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TuE readers of a new Periodical are fairly entitled to receive at the 
hands of its projectors, not only a statement of the grounds upon which 
it has been established, but also some exposition of its intended scope 
and objects. 

The word " some " is here designedly used, for it is not improbable 
that a work of this description, professing to keep pace with the ad- 
vancing intelligence of mankind, and even, should opportunities pre- 
sent themselves, to serve as a pioneer of progress, may in the course of 
time become so modified as materially to change its character. And 
as we are fortunately not trammelled by those conditions which in the 
comanercial world frequently place limits upon a project when it is 
first set on foot, we shall reserve to oiu'selves the right of introducing 
amendments, or of supplying deficiencies as our work jDroceeds, adopt- 
ing the old proverb that " Times change, and with them we shall change 
also." As this may appear a somewhat vague announcen^ent of our 
plans, we will shortly conduct om* readers to a standpoint from whence 
they may obtain a siu'vey of the field of oui* intended labours, and in 
the meantime we would invite them to follow us in a few reflections 
which have been the cause of our venturing, at this particular period, 
into the ranks of literature. 

How does it happen that from the earliest ages of the historic record. 
Art has been a favoured offspring of the human intellect, the spoiled 
child of man, whilst to Science he has been but a sorry stepfather ? 
In his rudest stages, he wooed her favour, painting his own skin if he 
could paint nought else, and in the palmy days of his early civilization 
he raised her upon a pedestal from which she never descended, although 
in the dark ages that followed, her figure was for the time obscured. 
Not so with Science. Her youthful steps have always been watched 
with jealousy and suspicion, and instead of guidance and support, every 
obstacle has been thrown in her path, her grandest revelations being 

VOL. I. B 

2 Introduction. [Jan. 

frequently held up to scorn and obloquy, and twisted and tortured 
until they were made to appear the teachings of the Evil One. 

We have but to place side by side the artist whose employment has 
been to copy the works of nature, and the student who has enunciated 
her laws ; or the modeller in stone, and the teacher of those truths 
which even stones reveal ; and what a contrast do they afford ! The 
labours of the one have been rewarded with a wreath of laurel, whilst 
a crown of thorns has ever fallen to the other's lot. 

How is this phenomenon to be explained? Can it be — and we 
make the inquiry with due appreciation of her elevating tendencies — 
can it be that the ways of Art are elastic and accommodating, and that 
without distinction of sect or creed, she has always been the servant 
of Theology, doing duty alike for Hebrew and Greek, Mahommedan 
and Christian, whilst Science has held aloof from all these denomina- 
tions and has walked only with the religion taught by nature ? Or is 
it that the truths of Science can only be understood and appreciated 
by the cultivated intellect, whilst the beauties of Art impress them- 
selves upon the unaided sense ? 

We refrain from pressing the inquiry further, lest it be imagined 
that we would seek to elevate our mistress at the expense of a sister, 
or that we are assuming a petulant tone and an attitude of hostility 
towards one with whom we desire to walk hand in hand, and to whom 
also our co-operation is daily becoming more indispensable. 

Leaving our readers, then, to work out the problem for themselves 
as regards the past, we proceed to inquire whether the existing state of 
things holds out a more hopeful prospect to Science and her votaries ; 
and here the replies are sufficiently plain and satisfactory. 

A certain amount of scientific knowledge is now absolutely neces- 
sary to men of all ranks, and forms an essential element in a liberal 
education. The influence of scientific discovery is becoming daily 
more powerful, and is making itself felt in almost every vocation of 
life. Science not only succours the wounded on the battle-field, but 
without her powerful aid, bravery is of no avail in the General, nor 
in the ranks. The loud and fluent tongue of the pleader may seek to 
persuade, but without the unobtrusive evidence of the man of science 
it fails to convince. The tiller of the soil may labour unremittingly 
with his hands, and waste the sweat of his brow, but his neighbour 
looks on, smiling, and lets the steam-engine perform his work more 
speedily and at a smaller cost. And so it is everywhere, — in the 
factory or mine, in the university or schoolroom, in the world of 
pleasure as in the world of pain. 

It is true that, for the moment, a few theologians and politicians 
are inclined to underrate her influence, and even in some instances to 

1864.] Introduction. 3 

close their ears to her teachings ; but these are exceptional cases, and 
those who " waste their philosophic pains " in thus endeavouring to 
stem the tide of progress, will one day find themselves drifting alone 
down the current with which they might have sailed in the company of 
their fellow-travellers on the way to Truth. 

Scientific knowledge is now eagerly sought, and its possessors are 
respected. Here and there a few impetuous workers or thinkers give 
utterance to tenets which shock the temperate and cautious, and lead 
the pious to believe that another golden calf is about to be set up for 
worship ; but these are the exceptions, and compared with Theology 
and Politics, Science has but few extremists. As, however, her 
devotees are rather men of thought and action than of wordy elo- 
quence, they are often less appreciated than the fruits of their labours, 
and thus it happens that the astute politician or the talented historian 
may edge his way on to the Treasury Bench, or arrive at the dignity 
of a Peerage, and the eloqiient Theologian may succeed in reaping 
a Bishopric, whereas the able man of science whose labours have 
changed the destiny of nations, or who has given a new direction or a 
fresh impulse to the course of civilization, must content himself ^ith 
a Knighthood, or declining that, must rest satisfied with the honour- 
able letters affixed to his name by his fellow-labourers, and leave it to 
posterity to raise an enduring monument to his memory. 

Still, as we have said. Science is beginning to exercise a potent 
influence in every circle of society, and not only does she reckon 
amongst her followers multitudes of the laboui'ing classes (so many, 
indeed, that it has been found necessary to organize a special depart- 
ment and machinery in the State to aid them in the pursuit of this 
species of knowledge), but even lords and statesmen who had pre- 
viously bestowed all theii- favours upon the nurseries of literatiu'e, are 
now beginning to cast tender glances upon Schools of Science, and 
other similar institutions. The discoveries of unwearying investiga- 
tors, too, and the explorations of bold adventurers on the earth or sea, 
or in the air, are no longer published in ponderous tomes and modest 
" brochures," but find a rapid utterance in special periodicals, and 
even in the flying sheets of the daily press, — those great organs of 
public opinion without which no man can live the life of the nine- 
teenth century. 

Thus much by way of preface to the consideration of the present 
state of Scientific knowledge ; but if, from a theme so noble and in- 
spiring, we have been able to derive so little eloquence, what words 
shall we find to plead our own cause ? As we approach the subject, 
we feel as does the candidate for public suffrage, who comes before 
the constituency primed v.ith eloquent appeals and telling periods, 


4 Introduction. [Jan. 

but who, when he sees the crowd of curious upturned faces, concealing 
tongues ready to applaud, but equally prompt to hiss, finds that his 
labelled sentences are gone, and with them his courage to seek fresh 

Let us, then, be brief. 

We have been told by men in every walk of life, that the time is 
come when Science may claim for herself a special organ ; that not 
alone scientific readers, but those of every class, desire to approach the 
source from whence this species of knowledge is derived, — to learn in 
which direction the current flows, and how it is likely to affect their 
material interests or questions bearing upon their eternal happiness. 

To supply such a want is a truly ambitious aim, and one which, 
we do not hesitate to confess, we should never have proposed to our- 
selves had we not been first assured of the co-operation of those whose 
powers alone are equal to its accomplishment. 

With men illustrious in Science, ready to avail themselves of these 
pages as a medium of communication with the public, and to many of 
whom we acknowledge ourselves already indebted, both for friendly 
counsel and for active co-operation, we now set out, full of hope and 
confidence; and before giving place to those whose words will have 
much weight, and whose teachings cannot fail to exercise a beneficial 
influence, we invite our readers to advance a few paces with us, to an 
eminence from which we may be enabled to point out to them some of 
the more prominent farmsteads on the surrounding fields of Science, 
where the labourers are to-day busy sowing or reaping, enriching old, 
or winning new pastures. 

This figurative remark naturally leads us to the consideration of 
one or two of the more prominent features in connection with the 
Science and practice of Agriculture as they are to-day presented to 
our notice ; and, perhaps, no subject is more deserving of attention 
at our hands than the Drainage and Cultivation of land. 

It is, probably, unknown to the large majority of our readers, that 
a legislative enactment was passed, a few years since, called the 
" Land Drainage Act," the object of which was to enable proprietors 
of arable and pasture land situated in valleys or level districts more 
effectually to drain such land by the acquisition of a convenient access 
to what are termed the arterial drains (the smaller streams and rivers) ; 
in fact, to give them what, in the railway world, would be called 
" running powers " for a drain through a neighbour's estate. 

When they are informed that by improved drainage the rental of 
some kinds of land may be raised from 5s. or 6s. to 40s., or even 50s. 
an acre, whilst the poorer soils are capable of being enhanced four- 

1864.] Introduction. 5 

fold, our readers will perceive this movement to be one of great 
practical importance. To do our English landowners and farmers 
justice, it would appear that they have always been willing to grant 
this accommodation to a neighbour, but, owing to the laws of entail 
and other conditions of society, this has been but a fleeting privilege, 
and should the obliging neighbour die, and be followed in the posses- 
sion of his estate by one less accommodating, the outlet might at any 
moment be blocked up or otherwise intercepted, and then the owoier 
of the drained land would have no power to cause it to be cleared or 

Several previous attempts had been made to remedy this evil by 
legislative enactments, all of which proved futile ; but under the new 
Act (which appears to have objectionable as well as advantageous 
features) a local Board may now be formed, having power to assess a 
rural district precisely as in the case of a " commission of sewers." 
The method by which it is intended to improve the drainage of land 
is by doing away with those mill-dams which interfere with the free 
current of an arterial drain, as well as through the utiKzation of others 
by which the flow is facilitated ; by collecting and storing up surplus 
water, and preserving it for seasons of di'ought ; and pumping stag- 
nant water by mechanical power from low to high levels, and thence 
directing it into arterial drains. To attain these objects, it is requisite 
to secui'e the hearty co-operation of whole agricultural districts, and 
owners of land should not look to their own immediate interests 
alone, but should consider the welfare of their neighbours and 

The promoters of such movements as these will find us ever ready 
to advocate their cause and give publicity to their reasonable sug- 

But good drainage alone is not a sufficient preparation of the soil 
for the reception of the parent seed ; deep and constant fuiTOwing are 
also requisite, and for this purpose steam is rapidly and advan- 
tageously superseding horse-power. The work is accomplished more 
efficiently and speedily, and there are descriptions of soil, and seasons 
when it would be absolutely ruinous to allow horses to tread the land 
whilst dragging the plough, whereas no obstacle whatever is opposed 
to steam traction. Indeed, the substitution of the latter for the former 
has, no doubt, frequently gained a season to the farmer, as his improved 
harvesting implements have saved him a valuable crop. 

It is hardly needful to add, that with improved drainage and cul- 
tivation of the soil, the farmer secm-es more valuable produce. Light, 

* Mr. J. Bailey Denton has been most active in bringing about improved 
drainage, and in procuring enactments for the purpose. 

6 Introduction. [Jan. 

scanty grain gives place to the full rich ear, and succulent grasses and 
clovers supplant the poorer kinds ; in fact, the " conditions of exist- 
ence" are altered, and the weed no longer finds a genial bed. The 
soil prepared, we next come to the seed ; and here, too, the agricul- 
turist has enlisted science in his cause. Two attempts are being 
made to increase the produce of cereals : one by the use of what is 
termed " pedigree seed ; " that is, a seed derived from repeated selec- 
tions of the finest ears — the original parent being an ear of great size 
■ — by artificial selection, in fact ; the other by artificial fructification. 
Our limited space will not permit us to dwell upon either of these 
systems, which will probably be treated in detail hereafter by abler 
pens than ours ; and we must refer to the farmer's last trouble — 
save and except the conversion of his harvest into gold, in which 
process he stands in need of other speculations than those of scien- 
tific men — we mean the saving of his produce, or, we might almost 
say, the conquest of the elements. 

The improvements which are daily taking place, to enable him to 
expedite and cheapen his harvest operations, deserve, and will receive 
a special jjlace with us. The reaping and mowing machines which 
have been some time in use in America are now approaching per- 
fection in England, and the haymaking machine has already rescued 
many a crop that would otherwise have been sacrificed. A little 
more speed ; a few more applications of scientific principles ; and the 
farmer may defy or wield the weather as he already manipulates and 
utiKzes the soil. 

But whilst the agriculturist turns with disfavoui' from the time- 
honoured running stream, and, pronouncing water-wheels a nuisance, 
calls in the aid of the steam-engine to every portion of his rapidly- 
progressing work, a leading mechanician steps forward, and warns us 
of the necessity of economizing coal and of utilizing water-power, lest 
the supply of the former should become exhausted. In his opening 
address, the President of the British Association startled the world, 
and more especially the geological world, with the announcement, 
that should the consumption of coal increase at its present rate, two 
centuries only will be the duration of the supply from the North 
Country coal-field ; and that, if no greater economy be exercised than 
at present, a hundred years will suffice to bring about this result. 

Whatever may be the value of this speculation, its propounder has 
been led by the consideration of the subject to practical conclusions, 
perhaps not novel ones, but of great importance to the community, in 
regard to the present mode of employing this precious fuel. He has 
shown that improved machinery, a better arrangement of the fire- 

1864. J Introduction. 7 

grate, and an easy method of firing, would not only economize its 
consumption to an almost incredible degi-ee, but that the inhabitants 
of cities would be spared the annoyance and inconvenience of a 
vitiated atmosphere. Even in our present iiroj)laces, he tells us, we 
consume five times as much coal as would be requisite in a properly 
constructed stove or improved open fireplaces. 

As regards the substitution of stoves for firesides, we suspect that 
our coimtrymen would rather dispense with coal altogether and return 
to the days of wood and turf, than allow such an innovation ; but, as 
we shall have occasion to show hereafter, striking improvements are 
being introduced into the construction of land and marine engines, 
which herald a constantly increasing economy in the consumption of 

It would appear, however, from the opinions expressed by ex- 
perienced practical geologists, that it is difficult at present to estimate 
even the exact area of our English coal-beds, and it is believed that 
the fields now worked will yield a sufiicient supply of fuel to last 
nearly a thousand years.* 

Leaving this subject, we have now to observe that the exploration 
of one new field has already produced results almost as startling, and 
certainly not less useful than the speculations of Sir William Arm- 
strong. In sinking a shaft at Middlesborough, for the purpose of ob- 
taining a sujiply of fresh water, Messrs. Bolckow and Vaughan, the 
enterprising pioneers of the coal and iron trade in that district, were 
so fortunate as to discover at a depth of twelve hundred and six feet, 
in the Trias, or New Eed Sandstone formation, a deposit of rock salt, 
which, in August last, had been penetrated to the depth of nearly 
one hundred feet, without its lowest limit having been reached ; and 
the brine, which was found to contain ninety-six per cent, of chloride 
of sodium, has been pronounced by an experienced chemist to be purer 
than that of Cheshire. 

It is almost imjpossible for persons unacquainted with the mineral 
and manufacturing districts of Northumberland to form any concep- 
tion of the importance of this discovery. 

Hitherto, the soda manufacture of the Tyne has been entirely 
dependent for its supply of salt (from which the various preparations 
of soda are manufactured) uj)on the brine-springs of Cheshire and 
Worcestershire, and from these two coimties at least one hundred 
thousand tons of salt have been conveyed annually, at a cost, in some 
cases, far exceeding the value at the works, of the mineral itself. 
Should the Cleveland salt-beds prove productive, the Newcastle soda 

* For further information on this topic, we refer our readers to an article in 
the present number, on the " Coal Eesources of Great Britain," by Mr. E. Hull. 

8 Introduction. [Jan. 

makers will, of course, be greatly benefited, and will compete more 
successfully than tbey do at present with the Lancashire manufac- 
turers for the supply of all the western markets. 

As to the fortunate ironmasters, they will not only have found an 
unexpected mine of wealth in the salt-beds, but in the evaporation of 
the brine, they will be enabled to utilize the waste heat from their 
puddling and blast furnaces, as well as from their coke-ovens ; thus 
adding profit to profit, and carrying out in an unexpected manner the 
economical principles recommended by the President of the British 

Closely allied to the question of Coal, is that of Petroleum — a 
natural j)roduct which is likely to exercise an important influence upon 
civilization. This hydro-carbon, some forms of which have long been 
known in India, has recently been found to exude from certain wells 
or springs in Pennsylvania and Canada. It is supposed to arise from 
the destructive distillation of a mineral bitumen beneath the sui-face, 
and on reaching the hand of man, it is subjected a second time to the 
distilling process, when it yields three distinct substances of consider- 
able value. The first is a spirit, which is employed as a cheap substi- 
tute for turpentine ; the second, a burning oil of great brilliancy, 
capable of being used in lamps of an almost nominal value, and itself 
procurable at an average price not exceeding half that of rape-oil;* and 
lastly, a kind of grease which is employed for lubricating coarse ma- 
chinery. The importation of this substance (chiefly in its distilled 
form) is increasing rapidly, and may be reckoned by millions of gal- 
lons, and ahnost the only thing requisite to enable it to rank amongst 
our leading commercial staples, is an inexpensive air-tight cask, in 
which it may be stored, so as to obviate the enormous leakage which 
often causes it to be a ruinous ventiu'e to importers and dealers. 

These are but two or three of the interesting results or applications 
of that geological knowledge, the development of which must neces- 
sarily occupy a prominent place in our pages ; and being of a prac- 
tical character, we have selected them for comment, in preference to 
those which bear upon the principles of the science itself, such as the 
Origin of Eocks, Earthquakes,f the Palseontological Evidences as to 
the Antiquity of the Human Eace, and many other subjects which are 
now engaging the attention of scientific men. 

Before quitting terra firma to follow the researches of Science into 
space, we must dh'ect our attention for a few moments to the work of 

* The wholesale price of the finest Petroleum Oil is now (November) one 
shilling and nineponce per gallon; of Eape or Colza Oil, three shillings and 
eightpeuce per gallon. 

t On this subject, an article will bo found in the present number, by Mr. Mallett. 

1864.] Introduction. 9 

Geographical Exploration, a subject of great interest in all literary, 
scientific, and political circles. 

A new era is dawning upon tlie profession of the traveller, and 
those attributes which found their embodiment in the fictitious but 
far-famed German Baron Munchausen, are fast giving place to 
scrupvdous care and accuracy in the description of places, and great 
modesty in the narrative of personal adventiu'es. 

This change is due in part to the general diffusion of know- 
ledge amongst the masses, which enables men more readily to detect 
error and exaggeration ; partly to the progress of the photographic art,* 
which is incapable of misrepresentation, and in a large measure to that 
wholesome competition amongst travellers themselves, which soon 
leads to the contradiction or verification of strange and novel dis- 
coveries. Amongst those who have earned for themselves a reputation 
for bravery and endui-ance, and who at the same time set an example of 
the virtue of modesty in the traveller, are the discoverers of the Soui-ce 
of the Nile, and the explorers of Central Australia. 

It would be impossible for us even to refer to the adventures of 
Speke and Grant on their journey from Zanzibar to Lake Nyanza, where 
the source of the Nile was discovered, and thence down the great 
river into civilized Africa. Their discoveries have been aptly com- 
pared by Mr. Crawfm'd to those of Columbus, and the practical 
benefits which are likely to follow them thi'ough the introduction or 
improved cultivation of useful products of the soil, and the civilization 
of barbarous peoples, will, in this case as in that of Bui-ke and Wills, 
recompense the world for the loss of many of its best sons in the ser- 
vice of exploration. 

But whilst we give a meed of praise to these adventurous tra- 
vellers, we consider it right also to inquire whether or not the 
governments of civilized Em'oj)e, and more esj)eciaUy our own legis- 
lators, are bearing their share of the buixlen, and extending a fair 
amoimt of support to those who risk their lives in the cause of 

This question will be answered best by a reference to what is 
passing in those regions of Western Equatorial Africa which have so 
long been the seat of the slave-trade and of human sacrifices. His 
Majesty the King of Dahomey must begin to have an elevated 
notion of his own importance, as traveller after traveller, and one re- 
presentative after another from the Com-ts of Eiu'ope, solicits his 
permission to visit him, and to remonstrate with him upon the errors 

* No traveller can plead the excuse that photography is difficult of application, 
after what was accomplished by Professor Piazzi Smyth, at an altitude of 10,700 ft. 
above the sea level, during the Teneriflfe expedition. 

10 Introduction. [Jan. 

of his 'ways ; and if these numerous visits have brought about no 
other improvement in the untutored mind of the sable despot, they 
have at least imparted to it dijjlomatic powers which would reflect 
credit upon any European autocrat. It is quite amusing to ob- 
serve how he " cuts his cloth according to his pattern," flattering 
one traveller and slighting another, as the force of circumstances 
may direct. 

Amidst the conflicting accounts received from Wilmot, Burton, 
Craft, and Gerard,* it is difficult to form a correct estimate of his cha- 
racter, but a comparison of the narratives of all these travellers, with 
that of Speke and Grant concerning the kings on the route taken by 
them, leaves but little doubt that, in common with that of most of 
these sable monarchs, his every-day rule is characterized by cruelty, 
superstition, avarice, and almost every conceivable form of licen- 
tiousness and oppression. 

Why, then, are oui* statesmen so delicate in theii* interference or 
non-interference in the internal affairs of Dahomey ? Oude was 
swallowed at a single mouthful, as an inconvenient neighbour in 
India ; and Japan and China were pierced to the very centre to com- 
pel their peoples to listen to the voice of Em-opean civilization 
and open their ports to western trade. Why are our French allies 
so characteristically polite towards the slave-dealing King of Daho- 
mey, whilst the rulers of Mexico are made to flee befoi'e their vic- 
torious arms, to avenge the injm-ed honour of France, and to compel 
redress for the private grievances of her subjects ? The reply is a 
simple one, and is furnished to us by our neighbours themselves — " Le 
jeu ne vaut pas la chandelle." 

Ministers may bestow a few hundreds of poimds upon such a cause, 
and may compensate for the small expenditm'e of funds by a lavish 
supply of letters of introduction; but is it worth while, they ask 
themselves, to make war for an idea — the suppression of the slave- 
trade — when the material result will be an improved supply of ivory 
or j)alm oil, or a small addition to our importation of cotton wool ? 

Were the supply of tea (or the demand for opium) likely to be 
affected, or if some great semi-civilized nation were to bo coerced into 
buying cotton-cloths, then no sacrifice of men or money would be con- 
sidered too great vmtil the desired end was attained ; but, in the mean- 
while, Zoological and Geographical Societies and private individuals 
are compelled to support enterprising adventurers in their efforts to 
reclaim the waste places of the earth, whilst statesmen hold aloof 
until the bold pioneer has broken a gap in the hedge, perhaps at the 

* From whom an interesting communication will be found in the present 

1864.] Introduction. 11 

cost of his life, and then tliey follow slowly and cautiously to plant 
tlie national standard. 

Some day it may be found politic for Governments to take the 
initiative in such matters, and meanwhile exploring expeditions fitted 
out by Societies, and the attempts of isolated travellers, such as those 
who have penetrated into Africa, Australia, and South America, will 
find a prominent and well-merited place in these pages, and we shall 
always be ready to afford them our best aid in their efforts to contri- 
bute to our geographical knowledge. 

As we pass upwards from earth to air, we still find courageous 
adventui'ers at work in the cause of Science. Here, too, they are 
steadily occupied in the task of tracing the operation of Nature's laws 
under what we consider abnormal conditions, and, by positive evi- 
dence, supplanting the calculations of exj)erimental meteorologists 
whose feet have never left the solid ground. 

On these subjects our great atmospheric explorer, Mr. Glaisher, has 
accumulated a fund of trustworthy information. He has shown that, 
with an increased altitude, we have not always proj)ortionally diminished 
temperature, but that the latter is sometimes abnormal to the extent 
of from one to twenty degrees, during the ascent ; that the most rapid 
decline takes place after leaving the earth, and that the rate of dimi- 
nution is less in proportion to the increased altitude. The laws of 
hygrometric variation, too, he has studied and defined more clearly ; 
and, not content with purely physical observations, he has contributed 
psychological facts of great interest. It would appear from his expe- 
rience that at great heights every sense becomes more active, and that 
impressions there formed are more firmly fixed upon the mind than 
those received below. No doubt the novelty of the situation has a 
great deal to do with this phenomenon, but altered physical condi- 
tions probably exercise a j)owerful influence upon the nervous system 
and the mind. 

For the benefit of those who brand men of science as infidels, and 
rail at the " intellectual pride " which, they say, causes them to sub- 
stitute their own knowledge for the truths of religion, we will quote a 
few sentences from a discom-se of Mr. Glaisher, on the religious influ- 
ence exercised upon him by his aerial flights, and we hope they may 
have the effect of removing the false impression as to a want of 
reverence in scientific men : — " I have experienced the sense of awe 
and sublimity myself, and have heard it on all sides from aeronauts, 
who have both written and said the same. For my own part, I am an 
overwrought, hard-working man, used to making observations and 
eliminating results, in no way given to be poetical, and devoted to the 

12 Introduction. [Jan. 

immediate interest of my pursuit, and yet this feeling has overcome 
me in all its power. I believe it to be the intellectual yearning after 
the knowledge of the Creator, and an involuntary faith acknowledging 
the immortality of the soul." 

In Meteorology there are many new features which might afford 
themes for passing thoughts. The students of Physical Science are 
directing their attention to the consideration of the nature of fogs 
upon our coast, and an eminent observer* has discovered that they 
are either confined to a very limited area, or reach from one to two 
hundred miles, whilst none have been observed intermediate between 
these in extent. Nothing definite is known as to their immediate 
cause. The observations of Admiral Fitzroy ui^on the course of wind- 
currents might further detain us, but we cannot tarry any longer in the 
atmosphere, and must pass, if but for an instant, beyond its Kmits 
into the infinite tmiverse, in order to direct attention to one or two 
features in Astronomical Science indicative of the character of our 
future inquiries. 

No subject has of late attracted more attention than the appli- 
cation of Photography and of Spectrum Analysis to the examination of 
the heavenly bodies. The labours of Mr. Warren de la Eue in the 
first-named subject are too well known to req[uire comment; and 
although the latter application of physical knowledge is yet in its 
infancy, it has already made us acquainted with some of the consti- 
tuent materials of the sun, moon, and a few of the fixed stars. 

But if the advances made in Chemistry and Physics have placed the 
heavenly bodies within the reach of experimental and analytical treat- 
ment, pure Inductive Science is not on that accoimt the less active in 
the heavens. Only recently it has been busy in our solar system, upon 
whose subordinate members new light is likely to be thi'own by a 
careful observation of the so-called "spots" upon the sun's sui-face. 
Here, too, the photographic art has been enlisted to perpetuate and 
confirm the results of astronomical observation. An able astronomer^ 
has arrived at the conclusion, that there is a connection between the 
"behaviour" of the sun's spots and the configuration and relative 
position of the planets, and has photogra]jhed those " sj)ots," for the 
purposes of comparison and inference. 

Such experiments as these, and all other matters relating to the 
progress of Astronomy, as well as to the improvement in the fabrica- 
tion of philosophical instruments already in use, or the introduction of 
new ones, will meet with a due share of our attention ; and it is only 
necessary to refer to the recent introduction of Time-balls, and Time- 
* Dr. Gladstone. t Mr. Stewart, of Kew. 

1864.] Introduction. V.i 

guns, and to their employment in such places as London, Edinburgh, 
Liverpool, Newcastle, &c., to show how practical is the value of this 
branch of Science, and how immediately it affects the comfort and 
safety of the community.* 

And having now descended once more to the earth's surface and 
directed our thoughts to man and his surroundings, it is necessary that 
we should devote a few pages to the consideration of those subjects 
which are more immediately connected with his interests, and which 
affect his own character and condition ; and with this view we shall 
cast a glance at the Natural History Sciences. 

One of the most interesting, and certainly the most practically 
usefid subjects to which we can direct attention, is the transport and 
acclimatization of plants and animals. 

We have but to refer to the transplantation of the Quinine-yielding 
Chinchona-tree from South America to India, and its successful culti- 
vation there ; to the introduction of British fruits into the Australian 
colonies ; and to the effort, hitherto but partially successful, to trans- 
port British salmon into those colonies for breeding purposes ; in order 
to show what a practical and important movement is here taking place, 
and how much the influence of pure Science is apt to be imderrated, 
until its material applications become manifest. 

The rapidly increasing demand for quinine was likely soon to have 
materially exceeded the supply from South America, but the success 
which has attended the acclimatization of the plant in India has re- 
moved all apprehension on that head ; and the benefits to be derived 
from the new industry are rendered more certain and immediate by the 
fact that the young tree yields even a larger supply of quinine than it 
does in the more advanced stages of its growth. 

The scheme of transporting salmon to Australia has not been so suc- 
cessful as the foregoing experiment, but as we feel sui-e that the labours 
of the enterprising acclimatizers will ultimately be crowned with 
success, and will yield a rich harvest to the inhabitants of the Austra- 
lian continent, and, we trust, to the initiators themselves, we shall 
devote a page to the narrative of their efforts, and hope that a little 
influential assistance may thereby be enlisted in their cause. 

We would fii-st observe, that there are few features in the history of 
acclimatization so satisfactory as the success which has attended the 
introduction of the natui-al products of Great Britain into Australia. 
Those who visited the Exhibition of 1862 cannot fail to recollect the 

* It is but jubt to mention, in connection with this topic, the names of Mr. 
Hnrtnup, of Liverpool, ana Professor P. Smyth, of Edinburgh, to whom the scien- 
tific world (and more especially the maritime community) is indebted for many 
improvements in these instruments and appliances. 

14 Introduction. [Jan . 

wax models of the acclimatized fruits of that continent. The full ears 
of wheat, the long silky locks of wool, and the long-stapled cotton 
(the latter introduced into Queensland from various quarters of the 
Old and New World), must be equally well remembered by all who 
visited the Colonial Courts. 

And now we come to the novel, and not less useful, salmon-breed- 
ing experiments. This enterprise was commenced as far back as 
1852, we believe, under the auspices of Sir George Grey, of whose 
efforts to improve the natural productions of the colonies placed under 
his charge it is hardly possible to speak in sufficiently laudatory 

The first experiment failed completely, notwithstanding that fifty 
thousand ova of salmon and trout were procured and employed in the 
attempt ; and that every precaution was taken to ensure their successful 
transport. The failure is attributed chiefly to the absence of a conti- 
nuous stream of water through the hatching apparatus. 

For eight years the matter was allowed to rest, no fresh action 
being taken, but in 1860 a second expedition was fitted out with the 
same object. Owing to the failure of the precautions which were taken 
to resist the high temperature of the tropics, and other causes, this 
attempt was equally unfortunate, and entailed upon a few private indi- 
viduals a loss of 650Z. The colonial governments now joined in the 
enterprise ; that of Tasmania, in conjunction with two other legisla- 
tures, voting an aggregate sum of 3,700/. for a third effort. Careful 
preliminary experiments were tried in England by scientific men, and 
vessels were then fitted out specially for the transport of the ova, an 
apparatus being provided for seciu'ing a constant flow of water, as well 
as for the maintenance of a suitable temperature. 

Again, however, the attempt was unsuccessful ; the failure in this 
instance being attributed chiefly to the disturbance of the water in 
whicli the young fry, hatched during the voyage, were contained, caused 
by the violent rocking of the ship. The yoimg fish were dashed 
against the sides of the apparatus and destroyed. It will not be long, 
however, before another effort is made to accomplish the desired end, 
and it is believed that the experience so dearly pm-chased, will render 
the next attempt successful. There will be no difficulty, it is thought, 
in eventually perpetuating the breed of salmon in the antipodes, more 
especially in Van Diemen's Land, where the rivers already contain a 
variety of trout ; but it is considered doubtfid whether this can be ex- 
tended to New Zealand, where the streams are rapid, and subject to 
violent floods. 

Having thus noticed some of the strictly practical applications of 
the science, we cannot pass away from the question of acclimatization 

1864.] Introduction. 15 

without referring to the interesting experiment which has been so 
successfully carried out by our neighbours across the Channel. 

The " Jarclin d'Acclimatation " may be considered an ornamental 
and an educational, as well as a practical undertaking ; and the 
admirable combination of art and nature, displaying as it docs, in 
the highest degree, the characteristic taste of the French people, is 
eminently deserving of commendation. We trust that the time is not 
far distant when the inhabitants and visitors in the metropolis will 
have an opportunity of participating in as great a pleasure as that 
which may now be enjoyed by visitors to the French capital. 

All questions regarding man's origin, or his relations to the lower 
animals, and concerning the connection or differences between the 
various races of mankind, will receive the earliest consideration of the 
writers in this Journal. They are par excellence topics of the day, 
and will probably long remain so ; and should any of our readers 
regard them as mere matters of speculation, interesting only to 
naturalists, or doubt their practical bearing upon society, we recommend 
them to read the report of the discussion which took place concerning 
the Negro, at the Newcastle Meeting of the British Association. 

At the close of a paper on " The Physical and Mental Character 
of the Negro," its author. Dr. Hunt, the President of the Anthropo- 
logical Society, summed up his views as follows : — 

" 1st. That there is as good reason for classifying the Negro as a 
distinct species from the Eiu'opean, as there is for making the ass a 
distinct species from the zebra. 2nd. That the Negro is inferior, 
intellectually, to the European. 3rd. That the analogies are far more 
numerous between the Negro and apes, than between the European 
and apes." 

" No man," he continued, " who thoroughly investigates with an 
imbiassed mind, can doubt that the Negro belongs to a distinct type of 
Man to the European. This word species, in the present state of 
science, is not satisfactory ; but we may safely say that there is in the 
Negro that assemblage of evidence which would ipso facto induce an 
unbiassed observer to make the European and Negro two distinct types 
of man. My second and third proposition must be equally patent to 
all who have examined the facts." 

And there appears to have been great unanimity in the opinions 
held by the officers of this nascent society, for, in the subsequent 
discussion, its secretary declared, in confirmation of the views of his 
chief, that wherever intellectual suj)eriority exists in a man of colour, 
he is always found to have an admixture of white blood in his veins. 
In the section in which these statements were made (the Geogra- 
phical and Ethnological), there were unfortunately but few physiolo- 

16 Introduction. [Jan. 

gists present; and the warmest defender of the poor Negro was a 
gentleman of colour, whose remarks had a moral rather than a 
scientific bearing. It is possible that there may since have been a fair 
discussion on the subject which has escaped oui- notice ; but be this as 
it may, there is no reason why the question should not be fully debated 
in these pages ; and it aj)j)ears to us that the discussion should be based 
not upon what is " not satisfactory " in the present state of science, 
but upon its acknowledged truths. 

For ourselves, we do not hesitate to say that we completely differ 
from much that is contained in the foregoing doctrines, and that they 
appear to us to be at variance with the opinions and evidence of the 
most advanced physiologists. If the term " species " be unsatisfactory, 
we apprehend that its definition has not been rendered clearer by 
those who state that there is as good reason for placing the black and 
white man in distinct species, as there is for classifying the ass and 
zebra in the same manner, ignoring the question of hybridity ; but, on 
the other hand, the admission that an intercrossing of the white and 
black races has a tendency to develope the intellectual faculties of the 
latter, and elevate the Negro to the level of the white man, seems to 
us to be pretty strong evidence that both belong to the same species, 
and partake of the same nature. 

One of the local journals (which by the way reported the pro- 
ceedings of the Association in a manner that has called forth the 
admiration of the scientific world*) did not hesitate to hint broadly, 
that the gentlemen who thus sought to degrade the Negro race, were 
the tools of the Southern Confederacy, and had been enlisted as the 
champions of slavery in England. 

With regard to man's relations to the lower animals, and his nature 
and condition prior to the historic era, the opinions of some physiolo- 
gists are becoming more and more divergent from the views hitherto 
entertained by the community ; and stepping past the most extreme 
palsBontologists of our day in this respect, a new and apparently careful 
thinker does not hesitate to present himself to the scientific world, 
and declare that he believes the fossil human remains which were 
found about six years since in the Neanderthal, near Elberfield, to 
have constituted the framework of a being endowed with no psychical 
powers beyond those which would enable it to provide its food and 
shelter, and possessing neither intellectual nor religious attributes. f 

From the consideration of the highest born creature to that of the 
" Monad," is but a step in the rmity of animal life, and the question 

* The ' Newcastle Chronicle.' 

t See the Report of Professor King"s paper read before the British A ssociation , 
and his article, in the present number, ou tlie Neanderthal Man. 

1864.] Introduction. 17 

of tlie origin of man now stands side by side with that of the lowest 
living types of existence. An eminent physiologist of our day has 
hinted that it may be possible, before half a centiiry has elapsed, for a 
man to take inorganic substances such as carbonic acid, ammonia, 
water and salines, "and be able to build them up into protein matter," 
and that that protein matter should " begin to live in an organic form." * 
On the other hand a French geologist of note has in a most solemn 
manner protested against the presumption of the man who seeks in his 
laboratory to compete with the Creator ! ■\ Both these writers are 
disbelievers in the theory of " spontaneous generation," and it is in the 
treatment of this question that they have expressed such opposite views. 
Whilst we must admit that at present we have grave doubts of Man 
being able to accomplish such a feat as is here described within the 
prescribed jjeriod, if at all, we confess that we regard without the 
slightest religious apprehension, any experiments that may be under- 
taken with this object. The stronghold of life appears to be as safe as 
it ever has been, and most assiu*edly, all that man can learn or effect, 
he is not only justified, but is bound by the gift of an intelligence 
second only to the Divine Intelligence, to attempt ; and if, through his 
chemical, physical, and microscopical attainments, he should one day 
become a maker (a Creator he never can become) of living forms, it 
will only serve as an additional evidence of his vast destiny ; and of 
the boimdless powers and infinite wisdom of Him who can thus afford 
to reveal His secret places in nature to the inquiring gaze of Man. But 
at present the evidence which we possess on the subject, although of a 
negative character, is rather adverse to the doctrine of " heterogenesis"J 
in any form. A few words will sufi&ce to explain the actual state of 
the inquiry. 

At present there are three modes by which it is either known or 
suspected that living beings may be produced. 

First, by " Spontaneous generation." That is to say, by the spon- 
taneous combination of decaying organic matters, under certain condi- 
tions, and according to an imknown law, to form anew living, moving 
beings of the lowest known types. 

Secondly (an allied form of heterogenesis), by the hand of man. 
That is to say, tkroughthe artificial application of physical or chemical 
forces and agencies to inorganic substances in the laboratory. 

Thirdly, thi'ough the operation of the parental law only. In this 
case the ordinance must have ceased to exist, under which the lower 

* Professor Huxley, ' Lectures to Working Men.' 

t M. Boucher de Perthes, " Avons-nous Pore et Mere ? " (This is not said in 
reference to any particular observer.) 

X " Heterogenesis '■ is a term employed to express the creation or birth of 
living beings in an abnormal manner. 

VOL. I. C 

18 Introduction. [Jan. 

forms of matter were originally combined to form a living being, and 
tbe sexual law substituted ; one or two pre-existing germs, either active 
or in a state of rest, being needful for the production of a new being. 

But, lastly, it is possible that all the foregoing laws may be in ope- 
ration, inasmuch as no one of them necessarily interferes with another. 

The evidence in favour of the doctrine of spontaneous gene- 
ration, is found in the appearance of certain obscm'e moving types, 
of infinitely small proportions, in decaying substances, notwithstanding 
every effort on the part of man to exclude the germs of life in any 
form. That in favour of the artificial production, by man, of the 
lowest living types, is of a still more dubious character. It consists 
in the fact that out of inorganic substances he has been able to make 
a few organic compounds, such as urea, butyric acid, &c. ; but our 
readers will see clearly that to make an inanimate complex substance 
from other inanimate simple substances, though we may call the 
former " organic " (in consequence of their usual origin), and the lat- 
ter " inorganic," is a process widely different from that of making a 
living, moving, sentient being. Still the latter is not impossibfe, and 
if man do succeed in making such a being, and it be endowed with 
animation by the Giver of Life, he will but have added to his resj)onsi- 
bilities, as he every day multiplies them, by the acquisition of fresh 

But having thus granted a fail- hearing to the advocates of the 
" spontaneous generation " theory, and to those who propound the 
second doctrine, we feel bound to state that the evidence against 
both multiplies day by day. It is foimd, first, in the constantly 
accumulating proofs in favour of the parental law. One after another, 
types which were supposed to have been spontaneously generated, from 
insects down to infusoria, are found to exist as germs or ova, either in 
the water, in other living beings, in decaying bodies or animal sub- 
stances, or, as it has been recently shown by French and English 
observers, to an enormous extent in the atmos2)here which we breathe. 
It has been proved, too, that the tenacity of life which these germs 
possess is very great ; enabling them to defy the hand of time or the 
destructive power of chemical and physical agencies, and these facts, 
coupled with the abnormal conditions under which such germs ai'e able 
to exist after the resuscitation of life, will probably, for some time, 
defy the attempts of even the most careful and conscientious experi- 
mentalists to define satisfactorily imder what circmnstances the lowest 
known types first spring into existence. 

But we must now take oui* departm-e from the field of natm'al his- 
tory, and return once more to the consideration of those topics which 

1864.] Introduction. 19 

more immediately affect the progress of civilization ; and in order to 
enable us to do so, we shall be compelled for the present to pass over 
many questions of interest in chemical and physical science.* 

Amongst these are the discoveries of new metals, such as thallium, 
indium, &c., by spectnmi analysis ; researches in organic and inorganic 
chemistry by eminent English and foreign experimentalists, and the 
important and interesting experiments upon the nature of heat, by our 
own physicist, Professor Tyndall, as well as all those medical and 
chirurgical discoveries which have added to the duration of human 
life or alleviated physical pain ; and we shall now refer cursorily to 
a few featiu'es in the progress of Mechanical Science. 

It must often appear marvellous to the uninitiated, that the hand 
of man is able to accomplish works in civil or military engineering, 
in comparison with which the laboiu's of Vidcan appear puerile and 
insignificant. But there is one instrument alone, which, since the 
introduction of steam, has afforded almost unlimited facilities for the 
employment and fabrication of the coarser metals ; we refer to the 
steam hammer. When this tool was first introduced, about twenty or 
twenty-five years since, the weight of the hammer was about five 
hundredweight, whilst that of the instruments now employed in the 
forging of gims, large shafts, and similar descriptions of work, in some 
cases attains to forty tons. And it is even stated that there is now 
one in com'se of construction at Sheffield, intended for the forsing of 
armour-plates, of nearly one hundred tons. The rapid development 
of this almost superhuman power, then, is alone able to account for 
the tremendous results obtained from modern implements of warfare, 
and for the obstinacy with which these are resisted by modern armour. 
But it is not only in its gigantic features that mechanical science 
is making such rapid strides. The various woods which served the 
pui'poses of our forefathers are, indeed, still largely employed, but 
they are no longer fashioned by the hand of man. Steam and 
machinery now perform every kind of work with gTeater acciu'acy 
and economy than did formerly muscle and bone, and we have our 
mechanism for sawing, planing, grooving, tongueing, carving, and 
indeed for every similar operation. 

And through the observations and experiments of men, eminent 
in physical science, we may calculate uj)on a greatly increased effi- 
ciency of the motive power and its application to almost every kind of 
manufacturing industry. 

Steam, to which in the eyes of most of our readsrs nothing 

* A full resume of the progress of these branches of science will, however, be 
found in our ' Chronicles.' 


20 Introduction. [Jan. 

can well be added, is itself susceptible, popularly speaking, of a 
further development, and what is known amongst engineers as super- 
heating, is now daily acquiring a greater amount of favour. The pro- 
cess and its eifect are simple and easily understood. 

In its passage from the boiler to the cylinder, where its work has 
to be performed, the steam loses a certain amount of heat ; in other 
words, a portion of it becomes condensed into water ; and in addition 
to this, a certain proportion of partially vaporized water passes from 
the body of that liquid in the boiler along with the current of steam 
into the cylinder. The steam thus deteriorated is, according to the 
more recent plan, " superheated " in its passage, the result being an 
improvement in its quality : for owing to its more perfect vaporization 
and its increased temperature on its arrival in the cylinder, it possesses 
more elasticity, and necessarily a greater impelling power. The super- 
heating process is performed by allowing the steam to pass through an 
apparatus of tubes, around which the flame or heated gases and 
atmospheric air circulate in their passage from the boiler to the chim- 
ney, thus converting the water-charged steam into elastic vapom', or 
what is technically called di-y steam ; and utilizing an amount of heat 
which would otherwise have been wasted. 

Another equally simple, useful, and interesting improvement in 
engineering science, is " siu'face condensing." The ultimate effect is 
the same as that of the foregoing process, namely, an acquisition of 
power without any additional expenditui-e of fuel, No doubt our 
readers will have frequently observed a jet of steam passing into the 
sea from the hulls of steam-vessels. This is the partially condensed 
steam, after it has done its work in the cylinder ; and in order to suj)ply 
its place, a fresh stream of cold sea-water is admitted into the boiler. 
The object of sui-face-condensing is to save the steam by converting it 
into warm water and returning it to the boiler. The apparatus 
somewhat resembles the last-named ; but cold water for condensing 
takes the place of steam for superheating. Instead of the cold sea- 
water passing into the condenser, there to be mixed with the steam and 
pumped off again along with it, the steam alone passes through tubes 
in the condenser, and around these, there flows a cm-rent of cold sea- 
water, which is subsequently pumped out, without having come in 
direct contact with the steam. The latter is retui-ned into the boiler, 
and thus, instead of cold water charged with saline matter, that vessel 
is supplied with distilled water at a temperature of 100° to 120°. The 
foregoing observations apply to the condensation of waste steam from the 
ordinary low-pressure engine, but a still further improvement has been 
added, inasmuch as the steam usually ejected into the atmosphere from 
the high-pressure engine is now conducted into the vacuum in the 

1864.] Introduction. 21 

cylinder of a low-pressure engine, working in conjunction witli the 
former, and thence through the surface-condensing apparatus back into 
the boiler in the form of heated distilled water, thus practically work- 
ing two distinct engines.* 

These are but two of the improvements which have been introduced 
into a single branch of mechanical science, and if our space allowed it, 
we might touch upon many others in its various sections. We could 
speak of the advances in railway travelling, especially over short 
distances, and uudergi-ound, instancing the Metropolitan Railway, with 
its convenient carriages, excellent system of lighting and signalling, 
and consequently the comparative safety with which the trains pass to 
and fro. We might refer to the introduction of coal-cutting machinery,"!" 
which will, we trust, one of these days, put an end to the destruction 
of human beings imder the most terrible circumstances that can be 
conceived ; to the improvements in machinery for the utilization of 
hitherto waste products, and new substances, and which along with 
others already named, could not in their tui-n be accomplished but for 
the employment of improved forms of iron, such as the cheaper steels 
and semi-steels, homogeneous metal, malleable cast-iron, &c. ; but our 
readers must be content with these passing remarks on the progress 
of Mechanical Science, and pass on with us to the last subject 
which demands om* notice, and without which our work would be 
far from complete. 

We now refer, not to any special branch of science or human 
industry, but to the progress of scientific education, and that chiefly in 
our own country. 

Whether this be effected by means of Philosophical Institutions for 
the middle and higher classes ; in the University Lectm'e Hall for 
students, or through the machinery of the Science and Art Department 
of the State ; it is entitled to, and will receive, our earnest consideration ; 
and as far as the nature of oiir work admits, a warm sujjport will be 
accorded to Science instructors of every rank and station ; indeed it 
will be our earnest desire, however limited may be our influence, to 
promote the weKare of all scientific men, from the most illustrious 
observer, to the hiunblest labourer in the fields of Science. 

And now, conscious that in this extended but hasty smwey, we must 
have said much that is open to doubt and criticism, and left unsaid 

* Of the two steamers 'Hibernian' and 'Bohemian,' both of which are about 
the same tonnage, plying between Liverpool and Canada, the former is fitted 
with a snrface-conden'ser, but not the latter. The former consumes 44 tons of 
coals per day, and makes 12^ knots per hour ; the latter requires 55 tons per 
day, and steams only 11 knots per hour. 

t Concerning which, some valuable information will be found in the present 
number of our Journal. 

22 Introduction. [Jan. 

many things wMch readier pens or abler minds would have treated 
with accuracy and clearness, we have a few parting words to add to 
our readers, and more especially to a large class to whom we look for 
considerable support, and who may do much to facilitate oui* labours ; 
we mean ministers of religion. 

It would avail us little, if, after intimating, as we have done in the 
preceding pages, that the social, and even the political bearings of 
Science will not be overlooked, we were to remain silent on the great 
question of Theology. To do this, would be simply to arouse suspi- 
cion, and lead to misconstructions which a frank exposition of our 
views may obviate : and we have less hesitation in approaching so de- 
licate a question, from the conviction that however adverse may be the 
views of individuals, or even, here and there, of some body of narrow- 
minded theologians, a vast majority of oiu- religious teachers look with 
anxiety, and without apprehension, upon each new revelation of the 
laws of nature, and v/atch with interest its bearings upon theological 
inquiiy. Scientific knowledge will never lower man's religious nature, 
nor render it any less devotional, unless it be employed for worldly 
purposes, or perverted to private ends by the promptings of passion. 
Sound Science must make some enemies, for, as we have already said, 
it drives superstition before it, as chaff is driven before the wind, and 
it may answer this or that prophet of our day to sneer at its propounders 
as self-righteous, or to hold them up to scorn as infidels ; but every 
sincere and devoted preacher of the Truth, knows it to be not only to 
his interest, but that it is indispensable that he should be acquainted 
with other branches of knowledge than those immediately connected 
with his vocation, and that he should at least march abreast with, if 
not precede, the foremost rank of lay intelligence. That many such 
inquiring men will be amongst our readers, as they may already be 
found amongst our contributors, we have no doubt whatever, and the 
question arises, how shall we deal with such subjects as are supposed 
to have a more or less direct bearing upon Theology ? 

There need be no hesitation in furnishing the reply. 

It would ill serve the ends of truth in any form, if we were to in- 
terfere with the free discussion of scientific topics on the ground that 
the views enunciated might give offence to the believers in some par- 
ticular theological doctrine. Such a com'se would defeat rather than 
promote the ends of true religion, and it may even be necessary that 
we should now and then be tolerant of the expressions of what may 
appear erroneous or extreme views, for the purpose of ultimately elimi- 
nating the truth. Whilst, however, we have too much faith in the good 
taste and right feeling of our collaborateiu's to suppose that freedom 
of discussion would ever be employed as a cloak for irreverence, we 

1864.] Introduction. 23 

are boiuicl to state that it will not bo with our cognizance or sanction, 
if any exjircssion in the slightest degree savouring of this quality finds 
its way into oiu' Jom-nal ; and we add this, not to curry favour with 
those to whom these remarks are more jjarticularly addressed, but in 
order that persons who are anxious to consult these pages with a view 
to the acquisition of sound science for the purposes of religious teach- 
ing, may not be driven away, to make place for others of a less 
friendly disposition, whose aim will be to detect heresy, or to turn the 
revelations of nature into a means of upholding su2)erstition. 

The cause of science may be advocated on the ground that it tends 
to the comfort and material prosperity of the human race ; or because 
it serves to elevate man's intellect, and to enable him better to fulfil 
his brief mission on Earth ; but its highest title to a foremost place in 
the literature and teachings of the day is found, not in either of these 
advantages, but in the fact that by disciplining the minds of men it im- 
parts to them a piu'er and more elevated conception of the Creator, 
and prepares them for the comprehension of the highest truths, thus 
helping to fit them for a pm'ely spiritual existence. 

( 24 ) [Jan. 



By Edward Hull, B.A, F.G.S,, of the Geological Survey of 
Great Britain. 

Of all sciences, none, perhaps, is so generally regarded as devoid of 
practical application as Geology. The employment of Astronomy in 
Navigation is known to all ; the ninnberless uses of Chemistry in the 
Arts are self-evident ; Mineralogy is, of course, of value in detecting 
minerals ; Physics, in laying down the principles of the electric tele- 
graph, and Mechanics, in the construction of machinery. But 
Geology ! " what can be the use of Geology ? " asks the world. If you 
answer that it has served to thi'ow a flood of light on the past history 
of our globe, such a reply will not satisfy the utilitarian ; and the 
" practical " miner will say (though erroneously) that he can work his 
way in the earth in search of the minerals as well without, as with, 
a knowledge of Geology. To all such inquiries, as to the practical 
use of this science, let me proceed to give a final answer. Pre- 
mising that Geology is capable of application in the elucidation of a 
number of questions affecting our every-day life, which cannot be 
dwelt upon here, I may state that it is pre-eminently useful, and 
indispensable in enabling us to estimate the extent of those stores of 
mineral fuel which Providence has laid up in the strata of the earth 
for the service of man. 

The coal stored up in the bowels of the earth is limited in quantity, 
and, like the Sibylline Books, when once burnt, is irrecoverable ; every 
day sees this store diminished ; and just as the master of a house, at 
the approach of winter, wishes to ascertain the quantity of fuel in his 
cellar, so must it be a subject of moment to us as a nation — depending 
as we do so largely on the supply of coal for om- manufactiu-ing, 
commercial, and even political, pre-eminence, — to ascertain as far as 
possible, to what extent we may reckon on the continuance of this great 
source of motive power. Without the aid of the science of Geology, 
such an inquiry could only have ended in disappointment ; with it we 
have all the materials necessary for the solution of the problem, as far 
at least as regards the actual quantity of coal itself. 

The strata, or " measures," containing the beds of coal, belong, for 
the most part, to the great Carboniferous System of Eocks. They 
occur generally under two modes of arrangement ; either as " basins " 

1864.] Hull on the Coal Resources of Great Britain. 

or " fields : " and on the tliresliold of our inquiry it may bo well to 
give a short sketch of each of these systems. 

Fig. 1. — Section of (he Forest of Dean CoaJr Basin. 

1. Coal-Measures. 

2. Millstone Grit. 

3. Mountain Limestone. 

Coal-hasin. — The section of a coal-basin is represented in the 
above woodcut. The term is used when the beds dip from every part 
of the circumference towards the centre. When the basin is elongated 
in one direction to a considerable degree, it is called a " trough ; " 
but as it is rare for any coal-bearing tract to be even approximately 
symmetrical, the term "basin" serves to denote all such tracts, 
whether the outline be cii'cular or oval. To this form belongs the 
largest coal-tract in Britain — the South Wales Coal-field (No. 23 in 
Map), as also that of the Forest of Dean (24), and several others. 

Fig. 2. — Section of the Yorkshire Coal-Field. 

1. Mignesian Limestone, 

2. Permian Sandstone. 

3. Coal-Measures. 
i. JMiLlslone Grit. 

5. Limestone Shale. 

6. Mountaia Limestone. 

Goal-field. — In the case of a coal-field, the strata dip (with more 
or less regularity) in one direction. Such an arrangement has many 
modifications ; either the strata dip under those of a more recent 
formation, as in the case of the Yorkshire Coal-field (Fig. 2), or they 
are cut oif along one side by a fault, as in the Anglesea coal-field. 
This is the more general form which a coal-tract assumes, and is 
often much varied by rolls in the strata, or by dislocations. 

Coal-group. — Where the strata of several coal-fields dip towards 
each other, and under those of a newer formation, such as the New 
Eed Sandstone, it may generally be inferred that they are connected 
underneath, and that if the newer formation were penetrated, the coal- 
measm'es could be reached beneath. When several of these coal- 
fields are thus physically connected, they give rise to what may be called 
" a group of coal-fields," or simply a " coal-group." Under the same 
title we also place a number of distinct hasins or fields, which were ori- 
ginally connected, but have since been dissevered by denudation, as 
those of the central valley of Scotland. In this manner the British 
coal-areas natiu-ally arrange themselves into foui' groups, which, on 
the map, have been marked as the Northern, Western, Eastern, and 
Southern coal-groups. These great divisions refer more immediately 
to the present arrangement of the tracts than to that which they 
assumed at the time of their formation. Nevertheless there is reason 
to believe that out of the fom" only two were originally continuous 
with one another, namely, the eastern and western groups. From this 

26 Original Articles. [Jan. 

great sheet of coal-bearing strata whicii once stretched right across 
our island from sea to sea, and even farther, the northern and the 
southern coal-groups were both separated, the latter by a barrier of 
land, the former by difference of age ; for we now know that coal was 
in process of formation in Scotland while the Carboniferous limestone 
was accumulating in the sea-bed over the English area. The follow- 
ing are the subdivisions or fields of the several groups. 

Northern Coal-group of Scotland.* 
Comprehending— 1, the Coal-fields of Ayrshire; 2, Clyde basin; 
3, Lesmahago basin ; 4, Clackmannan ; 5, Fifeshire ; 6, The Lothians. 

Eastern Group (England). 

8, Great Northern Coal-field of Northumberland and Durham; 
9, Derbyshire, Yorkshire, and Notts (only one coal-field). 

Western Group (England and Wales). 

10, Lancashire ; 11, Biu-nley basin ; 12, Flintshire ; 13, Denbigh- 
shire; 14, Poynton ; 15, North Staffordshire; 16, Cheadle ; 17, 
Shrewsbury ; 18, Colebrook Dale ; 19, South Staffordshire ; 20, War- 
wickshire ; 21, Leicestershire ; 22, Forest of Wyre. 

Southern Group (England and Wales). 

23, Forest of Dean basin ; 24, Somersetshire ; 25, South Wales 
basin. Besides the above enumerated, there are several small detached 
fields, such as those of the Border, on the north side of the Solway 
Firth, Whitehaven, and Anglesea. 

The two great coal-fields of the Eastern group are, in all proba- 
bility, connected by a tract of coal-measures underlying the Triassic 
and Permian formations along the east of Yorkshire, as indicated by 
the shading on the map. The nmnerous fields of the Western group 
are, without doubt, physically connected underneath the New Eed 
Sandstone of Cheshire and Staffordshire ; and, as already stated, those 
of the Southern group were, in their original state, joined together. 

Having thus cleared the way by a survey of the general structiu-e 
and arrangement of the coal-groups, we are now prepared to enter upon 
an examination of the resom'ces of the more important of the fields 
and basins. 

Northern Coal-group. 

Having already enumerated the members of this group, we must 
content ourselves with treating them as a whole, because, with the 
exception of two or three distinct fields, such as that of the Lothians, 
Fife, and Lesmahago, the coal-bearing rocks of Scotland are all physi- 
cally connected, and the structure of each is too complicated to 
allow of treating them in detail within the space at my disposal. 

The coal-formation of Scotland belongs, for the most, to the 

* Tlic nuuibcrti refer to those on the Map. 

18G4.] Hull on the Coal Resources of Great Britain. 27 

lower Carboniferous series, and is tliereforo of greater antiquity than 
that of England. It occupies the broad valley stretching from the 
Firth of Forth to the Firth of Clyde, and is bounded on the north by 
the frontiers of the Highlands, and on the south, by the hilly and 
wild tract which gives birth to the sources of the Tweed. The coal- 
seams are often interrupted by the intrusion of igneous rocks, and in 
some places, the older Carboniferous and Devonian formations rise to 
the surface, and terminate the continuity of the beds. There is docu- 
mentary evidence to show that coal was worked in Scotland from at 
least the fourteenth centiiry,* and the Celtic name for the mineral is still 
preserved in that of a little tarn, called Lough Glo. The total area of 
workable coal equals 1,720 square miles, and the total available supply 
of coal to a depth of 4,000 feet, amounts to 25,300 millions of tons.f 
The quantity raised in 1861, was 11,081,000 tons from 424 col- 
lieries.| In this is included the double coal-trough of the Lothians 
—the resom'ces of which were calculated with much labour by Mr. 
Milne-Hulme and Mr. S. Nicol, several years ago. It will be seen 
from the above estimates, that there is coal enough to last at the present 
rate of consiunption for about 2,000 years. 

Eastern Coal-geoup. 

The Ch-eat Northern Coal-field. — The resources of this district have 
been more fully illustrated than those of any other coal-field in England. 
No less than six distinct estimates having been made, and they all come 
to very nearly the same conclusion regarding the available quantity 
of coal at the time specified by each. 

The coal-field extends from the mouth of the Coquet, on the 
north, to that of the Tyne on the south, a distance of fifty miles. The 
strata dip generally eastward, and are ultimately concealed beneath 
the table-land of the Magnesian Limestone, which is now penetrated 
by shafts in search of the subordinate coal-beds. The actiial coal- 
field has an area of 460 square miles, but to this we must add the area 
overspread by the Magnesian Limestone, and other formations of more 
recent age — that is, 225 square miles — making in all 685 miles, and 
containing about 7,200 millions of tons of available coal. This coal- 
field has from the infancy of mining been one of the greatest pro- 
ducers ; and from its store the Metropolis of the Empire has prin- 
cipally been supplied. The consumption is still steadily increasing, 

* Mixei Sylvii Opera, p. 443. 

•{• ' Coal-fields of Great Britain,' 2ncl edit, p. 179. I must here apologize to 
the reader for quoting myself, which I do for the simple reason that there is 
no other authority extant for the resources of all the British Coal-fields, though 
there are for a few special ones wliich shall he stated. The calculations contained 
in my work were made with much care, and have been used by Sir W. Armstrong, 
President of the British Association. I may here state, in order to avoid the 
appearance of dogmatism, that in dealing with so large a question as the number 
of tons of coal in any of our coal-fields, tlie figures do not pretend to be more than 
close approximations to the reality, but it would be a useless repetition to place 
before each group of figures such words as "about," "approximately," "nearly," 
&c., wliich the reader is requested mentally to introduce for himself. 

t Hunt's 'Mineral Statistics of Great Britain ' for 1861. 

28 Original Articles. [Jan. 

and in 1861 reached 19,144,965 tons. Supposing the amount to reach 
20 millions, the supply would last 360 years. The calculation of 
Mr. T. Y. Hall, in 1854, was 365 years. 

Coal-field of Yorkshire, Derbyshire, and Notts. — This is the largest 
coal-field in England, and extends from Bradford and Leeds on the 
north, nearly to Derby and Nottingham on the south, a length of sixty 
miles. Towards the northern outcrop, the strata, which had pre- 
viously maintained a meridional direction throughout a distance of 
about fifty miles, suddenly bend roimd at right-angles, and trending 
eastward, are ultimately lost beneath the Magnesian Limestone which 
passes over their edges, and rests on the Millstone Grit. The same 
beds again re-appear in the northern coal-field, and there is good reason 
for believing, with Professor Phillips, that these two districts are phy- 
sically connected beneath the more recent formations, as indicated on 
the map by the faint shading. 

The general dip of the coal-strata is eastward ; but there are 
several rolls or troughs running north and south through the centre 
of the field. The coal, which is of very fine quality, is known as 
" splint," from its splintery fractm'es. 

In estimating the resources, a considerable addition must be made 
to the area of the actual coal-field, for the available coal-ground con- 
cealed beneath the Magnesian Limestone and Trias on the east, amoimts 
to probably one-half as much again. The exact distance to which the 
coal-measures extend in this direction is, of course, at present a matter 
of conjectm'e, and will probably never be known, as the overlying strata 
increase in thickness the further we proceed eastwards ; but the distance 
is certainly considerable. The Permian beds have ali-eady been 
pierced in several places by collieries, one of the most remarkable being 
that recently sunk on the property of the Duke of Newcastle at Shire- 
oaks, in which the Permian beds were found to be 66 yards in thickness. 
Taking the area of the coal-field at 760 square miles, and that of the 
available groimd occupied by the Magnesian Limestone at 400, there will 
thus be 1,160 square miles with coal, an area larger than the coal-basin 
of South Wales, and only less than that of Scotland. The available 
quantity of coal will not fall short of 16,800 millions of tons. The 
quantity raised in 1861 was 14,490,919 tons, so that at this rate of 
consumption there is sufficient to last for upwards of a thousand years. 
There were in 1861 about 577 collieries, of which only five passed 
through the Magnesian Limestone in 1859.* 

The Western Coal-group. 

The Western Coal-Group is bounded on the north by the Lanca- 
shire coal-field, on the east by those of North Staff'ordshire, Leicester- 
shire, and Warwickshire ; on the south by those of South Staifordshire 
and Shropshire, and on the west by those of Denbigh and Flintshire. 
The strata of these respective coal-fields have a general dip towards 
the centre of this great basin, which is occupied by Triassic and Per- 

* As I am informed by Mr. C. Morton, Her Majesty's Inspector. There may 
have been a few mure since tliat time. 

1864.] Hull on the Coal Resources of Great Britain. 29 

mian beds, and there can scarcely be a question that the coal-formation 
extends imdcrneath over the whole area (as represented in the map), 
though often at very great depths. The following diagram (Fig. 3) 
will give an idea of the manner in which the Carboniferous beds rise 
from beneath the newer formations at the eastern and western sides of 
the basin. 

Fig. 3. — Section of the Western Coal-group. 
North Wales Derbyshire 

Hills. Hills. 

Cheshire Plain. 

The mineral resources of this vast area, which is not less than 4,700 
square miles, are practically inexhaustible were it possible to work the 
coal over the whole of it, but such an idea is altogether visionary, as 
the overlying formations often attain a thickness of 5,000 feet, which 
would have to be passed through before reaching the first seam. I 
shall hereafter endeavoiu- to show that such a depth is probably 
beyond the reach of mining enterprise, at least with our present 
mechanical appliances. I therefore pass at once to the consideration 
of the available portion near the margin. 

South Lancashire. — Owing to the gTeat demand for coal arising from 
the extent of population and manufactures in this country, this coal- 
field is being heavily taxed. The area of the coal-bearing portion* is 
192 square miles. The field extends fi"om Eainford and Prescot on 
the west to Ashton-under-Lyne on the east, at which place it bends 
southward into Cheshire, and throws out a small arm as far as Poynton. 
The general dip of the strata is southward, and the seams descend 
under the Triassic rocks of Cheshire. Within a vertical limit of 4,000 
feet there is an available quantity of coal to the extent of 3,700 mil- 
lions of tons, and the quantity raised in 1861 was about 12 millions, at 
which rate of consmnption the coal would last for about 300 years. 

The Burnley Coal-basin. — This tract lies considerably to the north 
of the main field. It is in form a half-basin, bounded on the south- 
east side by a large fault. It has an area of 20 square miles, and a 
combined thickness of 40 feet of coal. The available quantity is about 
270 millions of tons, and the annual yield about one million- 

Flintshire and Denbighshire Coal-fields. — These two fields occupy 
the same general range of hills, rising above the Triassic plains of 
Cheshire and Salop. The former is rapidly approaching exhaustion, 
owing to the fact that the seams nowhere descend to any gi'eat depth, 
but are repeatedly brought to the siu'face by faults ; consequently 
they have been largely worked in the days of shallow pits. At 
Mostyn, coal is worked under the sea, and attempts have been made to 
reach the seam beneath the New Eed Sandstone. The area of the field 
is 35 square miles, and there remains for future supply little more than 
20 millions of tons, of which the present generation may see the end. 

* This is exchisive of the hilly district, in which there are occasional thin 
seams, kuowu as " mountain mines." 

30 Original Articles. [Jan. 

The Denbiglisliire field, on the other hand, has a somewhat larger 
area, and holds a very much greater quantity of coal. It occupies about 
47 square miles, and has an available store of 490 millions of tons. 
The seams dip eastward (see Fig. 3), under large tracts of Permian 
and Triassic beds, and were the minerals caj^able of being followed 
in the direction of the dip, the sujiply might be ahnost indefinitely 
extended. The quantity raised in 1861 from these two coal-fields, 
amounted to 1,870,250 tons. 

North Siaffordsliire Coal-field. — Considering its extent, this is one 
of the richest, and at the same time least developed, coal-fields in 
Britain. With an area of 75 square miles, a vertical thickness of 
5,000 feet of coal-bearing strata, containing 22 valuable seams, as 
well as several very rich beds of ironstone ; there are only a few mines 
of any great depth, and a considerable portion of the district may be 
considered virgin ground. At the same time mining operations are 
being rapidly extended, so that between the years 1857-61, the quan- 
tity of coal raised had doubled itself, and in the latter year it reached 
2,372,500 tons. 

The shape of this coal-field is nearly triangular, with its apex to 
the north. Towards the south and west the coal measures dip at 
moderate angles under Permian, and Triassic formations, which at no 
distant day will, in all probability, be invaded by collieries. The 
available supply of coal for future use is not less than 1,600 millions 
of tons, v/hich is capable of sustaining the present drain for nearly 
700 years. 

The Cheadle coal-field is. separated from that of North Stafford- 
shire by a ridge of Millstone Grit, and contains only a few of the 
lower seams. In an economic point of view it is unimportant. 

South Staffordshire Coal-field. — This coal-field is remarkable from 
the fact that it has been upheaved bodily through the Triassic rocks 
along two lines of dislocation which bound it on the east and west sides. 
Unlike that just described as in the freshness of youth, this may be con- 
sidered as having passed the meridian of its career, and as being on the 
verge of old age. Its extraordiBary richness has been the principal 
cause of its early decline, and the treasures easily acquired have been 
often recklessly squandered. No district in Britain has been more 
favoured by natm'e in the richness of its stores of coal and iron, but 
unfortunately for their ef&cient and economical working, they have 
been placed too near the surface, and consequently have been mined 
by means of a vast nmnber of small, ill-managed coal-pits, instead of on 
a well-regulated system of mining, such as is involved in the working 
of more extensive collieries. In some places the water from the old 
excavations has been allowed to accmnulate to such a degree that 
large areas are hopelessly drowned out, and in others much of the 
coal has been wasted. At the same time this mineral wealth has 
given rise to the concentration of an enormous amount of manufac- 
turing industry, and the spectacle of blast-furnaces, foundries, coal 
and iron-pits, and houses interlaced by a network of canals, railways, 
and roads, which the " black country " presents, is familiar to most of 
our readers. 

18G1. 1 Hull on the Coal Besources of Great Britain. 31 

Over the southern half of the field — that is, south of the Bentley 
fault — a coal-scam no less than 30 feet thick is, or was, spread. It is 
called the " Dudley 10-yard scam," and is the thickest in England, if 
not in Britain. North of the fault it is split up into nine separate 
seams, which collectively form 30 feet of coal.* The area of the coal- 
field is 98 sf[uare miles, and of the original quantity of 3,000 millions 
of tons of coal, not more than 960 millions remain. The production 
of coal has of late years rapidly increased, and in 1861 it reached 
7,253,750 tons from 580 collieries. Taking the futui-e production at 
eight millions of tons, the coal would last 120 years. 

Colebrook Dale Coal-field. — This district is even fm'ther advanced 
towards exhaustion than the one we have just considered. The coal 
has been worked here more than a thousand years, for it was found in 
the ruins of Uriconium,| and, with the rich seams of ironstone, has 
laid the foundation of several celebrated iron manufactories. Over 
the larger part of the field both minerals have been ali-eady worked 
out, and the only place where they yet remain entire is along the 
eastern edge. The miles of country covered by mounds of slag, and 
waste heaps of former mines, bear witness, even to the casual passer- 
by, that the earth has been despoiled of all her treasures. 

The area of the field is 28 squtu-e miles. The beds dip eastward, 
and may one day be followed imder the Permian and New Eed Sand- 
stone ; but there are certain irregularities in the stratification of this 
coal-field, that render it uncertain to what extent the beds of coal 
underlie the newer formations. Only one-third of the original quan- 
tity of workable coal remains, which we may place at 14 millions of 
tons. In 1861 the quantity raised was 829,750 tons, so that tw^enty 
years hence the coal will in all probability be exhausted. 

Leicestershire Coal-field — This is a small, but rich district, as it 
contains one seam 12 or 14 feet in thickness, and several others of 
value. On the Coleorton, or eastern side, there are several collieries 
which are situated on the Trias, and it was here, at Whitwick colliery, 
that George Stephenson, with that povver of observation so remarkable 
in him, first came to the conclusion that the coal-measures dipped 
imder the New Ked Sandstone, and then demonstrated the fact by 
sinking a shaft to the main coal.! 

The area of this field is upwards of 15 square miles, of which a 
part is concealed by newer formations, with an available supply of 
140 milKons of tons. The quantity raised in 1861 was 740,000 tons. 

Warimclcshire Coal-field. — The position of this coal-field is interest- 
ing from the fact that it forms the farthest prolongation of the Carbo- 
niferous strata towards the south-east of England. It occupies a long 
and narrow strip of coimtry, stretching from near Tam worth to Wyken, 
a distance of 15 miles. The strata dip to the south-west under large 
tracts of the Permian formation, where the coal lies at accessible 
depths, and will greatly prolong the resources of the district. The 

* Mr. J.B. Julves' 'Memoir on the North Staffordshire Coal-field,' 2ucl edition, 
t Or Wroxeter. Mr. T. Wright states that cinders were discovered under 
several of the lijqjocausts. 

X Smiles' ' Life of G Stephenson.' 

32 Original Articles. [Jan. 

area of tlie coal-field is 30 square miles, and the available supply 
about 400 millions of tons, to wbicb a very large addition must be 
made for the quantity underlying the Permian formation. In 1861 
the produce of this coal-iield was only 647,000 tons, which cannot be 
said to be in due proportion to the resources. 

The small and but slightly productive districts of Shrewsbury, the 
Forest of Wye, and the Clee BQUs, do not require special notice here, 
further than to intimate their existence. 

Southern Coal-grotjp. 

Forest of Dean Coal-basin. — In structui-e, this is a more perfect 
basin than any in Britain, as the strata everywhere dip from the cir- 
cumference towards the centre (Fig. 1). It is by no means opened up to 
the extent of its capabilities, and for the most part presents the aspect of 
rich forest scenery, with only an occasional coal-pit chimney at wide 
intervals rising in the midst of the trees. Its area is 34 square miles, 
and it contains about 560 millions of tons of available coal. The 
annual produce is about 1,000,000 tons, which in a few years will 
be considerably extended by the introduction of railways now in pro- 
cess of construction. 

Bristol and Somersetshire Coal-basin. — The greater portion of this 
basin is uncomformably overlaid by a newer formation of Trias, through 
which the coal-measures only appear at intervals ; yet its general form 
has been pretty well ascertained by means of collieries and borings. 
Including the parts occupied by Ked Marl and Lias, the area is not 
less than 150 square miles, with 51 seams of coal distributed through 
5,000 feet of strata. Of these seams, however, only 20 are of a thick- 
ness of 2 feet and upwards, and owing to some special j)hysical impe- 
diments (such as the presence of the " Pennant Grit "), very large 
deductions require to be made before arriving at the available supply. 
This quantity I do not place at a higher figm-e than 2,000,000,000 
tons. The produce for 1861 was 1,025,525 tons. 

South Wales Coal-basin. — The greatest of our coal-basins is the last 
but one to be described. It is truly an astonishing reservoir of mine- 
ral fuel, whether we regard it for its actual area, not less than 910 
square miles ; the enormous thickness of the strata stored with coal, 
reaching 10,000 feet ; the vertical accumulation of coal, stated by one 
authority to be from 70 to 100 feet in thickness ; * or lastly, from the 
symmetrical form of its outline, which is nearly that of a pear. It is, 
in fact, an elongated basin or trough in which the strata dip towards 
the central axis, that axis itself at the same time coinciding with a 
great upheaval of the strata in the form of a roll or anticlinal. The 
coal-field is divided into thi-ee districts : the west, yielding anthracite ; 
the centre, steam coal ; and the east, bituminous coal. The richer 
beds lie near the bottom, and these are often placed within reach of 
mining operations by the great depth of the valleys, which penetrate 
for miles into the central high-lands, laying bare the strata many hun- 
dred feet. 

* Mr. H. H, Vivian, 'Speech on the Coal Clause,' House of Commons, 1861. 


Hull on the Coal Resources of Great Britain. 


Tho quantity of available coal yet remaining is, according to my 
own calculations, 24,000,000,000 tons. This is one-half tho whole 
amount originally contained in the basin, a very large portion of which 
is at a dejjth below 4,000 and 5,000 feet. The produce of the 313 
collieries in 1861 was 6,690,771 tons, which is considerably lower than 
in previous years, probably from the falling off in the export trade 
owing to the American war, but even should the amount reach ten 
millions of tons, there is enough to last 2,400 years, or to sup^jly the 
whole consumption of Great Britain for about 300 years, — a fact which 
one might suppose ought to set the mind of the public at rest on tho 
subject of our coal-resources.* 

Cumberland Coal-field. — This being detached from any of the above 
groups, I have reserved for the last. It forms a small band stretching 
along the sea, from Whitehaven to Maryjjort, and has been worked from 
very ancient times, as we have documents showing that the seams had 
been followed under the sea as early as the beginning of the 18th cen- 
tury. The area of the coal-field is 25 square miles, and the quantity 
of coal remaining for use is about 90 millions of tons. 

The following summary of the above shall conclude this part of 
the subject. 

General Summary. \ 


Northern . 
Eastern . . 


square miles. 







Resources in 
millions of tons. 

Produce, 1861. 







83,544 I 85,817,324 

Number of 







The above figures being rendered into words, mean that there are 
in Great Britain, within a depth of 4,000 feet from the surface, 
83,544,000,000 of tons of coal available, and that this quantity divided 
by the quantity raised in 1861, say 86,000,000 of tons, would last for 
about 970 years. 

Having thus detennined approximately the resources of our coal- 
fields, and making no pretensions to prophecy, it might be wise, perhaps, 
to close this article without venturing one w^ord regarding the future. 
Nothing is more liable to error than prospective statistics ; the only 
person who is privileged to make use of them being the Chancellor 
of the Exchequer for the time being. At the same time, the falsifi- 

* The estimates of Mr. Vivian are much larger than my own ; but I think 
he has fallen into the error of multiplying the average thickness of coal into the 
full area ; whereas the range of some seams is very far short of that. 

t The produce and number of coUeries are from the ' Mineral Statistics of 
Great Britain,' for 1861, by R. Hunt, F.E.S., but differently arranged to suit the 
classification into groups here adopted. 

VOL. I. B 


Original Articles. 


cations to which the estimates of this great fimctionary are often sub- 
ject, may well be a warning to all would-be minor prophets not to 
venture on forbidden ground. We feel it, however, necessary to say a 
few words in vindication of what may appear the, somewhat arbitrary, 
limit of depth which we have adopted in the above calculations of our 
coal-resources. The reader will be justified in inquiring why we 
prefer 4,000 feet to 5,000 feet on the one hand, or 3,000 on the other, 
and he is therefore entitled to a reply, though it must be a brief one. 

Taking the latter figure first, we may state at once that this depth 
has already been attained, or very nearly so, in more than one colliery, 
both in our own country and on the Continent,* and no colliery mana- 
ger will maintain that the limit has been here reached. 

With regard to 5,000 feet as a limit of depth the ease is otherwise ; 
for we have reason to conclude that supposing this depth to have been 
attained, the temperature, not to speak of other obstacles, would be 
found so high as to forbid the employment of human labour. 

The increase of temperature as we penetrate from the surface, is a 
law which has been established on the evidence of a large number of 
observations in all parts of the world. In our own country very in- 
teresting and careful experiments have been made in several mines ; 
both in the metallic mines of Cornwall, and the coal mines of the North 
of England. f Having on a previous occasion given the experiments 
in detail, the results need only be stated here, and are summarized in 
the following table, together with the temperatures calculated to a depth 
of 4,000 feet. 

Table of Increase of Temperature for Depth. 

Depth in feet. 


Increase of 

Temperature due 

to Depth. 








due to Density 

of Air. 













In the above table " the temperature of no variation " adopted, is 
50*5° at a depth of 50 feet from the surface. 

From the foregoing tables it will be seen that even at a depth of 
4,000 feet, a temperature may be expected more than tropical, though 
less than it would be at 5,000 feet, and sufficient, we think, to place 

* One shaft in Belgium, we are assured, is 932 yards in depth. In Saxony, 
there is anotlier upwards of 800 yards ; and in the Dukinfield Colliery, the black 
mine has been followed to the depth of 940 yards from the snrface. 

t Experiments made at Eose Bridge Colliery, Wigan, and Dukinfield Colliery, 
Ashton-under-Lyne, and detailed at length in the ' Coal-fields of Great Britain,' 
pp. 223-232. The latter were first published by Mr. W. Hopkins, F.K.S., in the 
' Philosophical Transactions,' vol. cxlvii. 

1864.] Jlvi.1, on the Coal Resources of Great Britain. 35 

the limit of depth within tiio last-mcutioned figure. The means by 
which the temperature even at 4,000 may be reduced so as to admit 
of healthful labour is ventilation, and the question remains, to what 
extent can this be accomjjlished. A series of interesting experiments 
undertaken at my request by Mr. Bryham, at Rose Bridge Colliery, 
Wigan, enables us to arrive at the following general conclusion : — that 
in a mine of ordinary extent, the temperature can be lowered by 
20*^ or 30^, according to the distance from the shaft, and the season 
of the year. The cool air of winter reduces the heat of the mine more 
than that of summer time, so that even with a depth of 4,000 feet it 
may be often imj)ossible to excavate the coal except dui'ing the colder 
months of the year. 

Space will not admit of our doing more than to glance at the past 
history and futm'e prospects of coal-mining. It may be said that up 
to the end of the last century, the art had only smouldered. It was 
when the invention of the steam-engine revolutionized the industry of 
this country, that mining burst forth with an energy previously im- 
approached. Probably not more than ten millions of tons of coal 
were raised at the commencement of this century ; yet in 1830 the 
quantity raised was thirty millions, and in 1851 not less than fifty-four 
millions.* From 1854 downwards, we have the retm'nsof the Mining 
Record Ofiice,f which show a general tendency to expansion, though 
with fluctuations ; the maximum having been reached in 1861, when 
the enormous quantity of eighty-six millions of tons was brought to 
the surface. 

Notwithstanding these facts, however, it woidd be rash to assume 
that the experience of the past is to be a criterion of the future. We 
neither wish for, nor expeot, an increase during the remainder of this 
century at all proportionate to that of the earlier half, and this view is 
borne out by some of the later retm-ns. Some of om" coal-fields, as 
has been shown, have passed their meridian, and, having expended 
their strength, are verging on decay. Others have attained their 
maximum, or nearly so ; this indeed is the case with the majority. The 
younger coal-fields will have much of their strength absorbed in com- 
pensating for the falling-off of the older ; so that in a few years the 
whole of our coal-producing districts will reach a stage of activity 
beyond which they cannot advance, but around which they may 
oscillate. Entertaining these views, I am inclined to place the pos- 
sible maximum of production at one hundred millions of tons a year ; 
and yet it has been shown that even with this enormous "output," 
there is enough coal to last for eight centuries. 

* On the authority of Mr. J. Dickinson, Her Majesty's Inspector of Coal 

t 'Mineral Statistics,' 1854-61. 


( 36 ) [Jan. 


I. The Deep-Sea Bed of the Atlantic and its Inhabitants. 
By Dr. G. C. Wallich, F.L.S. 

The sounding-machine lias already conducted us to the confines of an 
unexplored world. It has enabled us to penetrate the secret so long 
and so steadfastly concealed by natiu'e beneath the waters of the 
ocean, by placing within our grasp the still living forms Of creatures 
differing in no material respect from some of those inhabiting moderate 
depths, yet capable of sustaining existence imder the extraordinary 
conditions known to prevail amidst the more profound abysses of the 
sea-bed. In short, it has taught us that our preconceived views con- 
cerning the incompatibility of these conditions with the jDcrformance 
of functions which are essential to life, are erroneous and demand most 
careful revision. 

The fact, as thus stated, appears simple enough, and may, by many 
persons, be regarded as involving purely scientific issues. It will be 
our aim, however, to show that this is by no means the case ; and that, 
whilst the interest attaching to the discovery of animal life imder 
such circumstances is undoubtedly great, and likely to lead to valuable 
results in every department of Natural History, the practical bearing 
of this discovery on the question of Oceanic Telegraphy is of no less 
important a character. But in order to render ourselves intelligible, 
we must briefly direct attention to what was known on the subject 
prior to the time when it assumed its present aspect through the dis- 
covery of living star-fish procured from a depth of nearly a mile-and- 
a-half below the surface. 

Without stopping to notice the various conjectures regarding the 
nature of the deep-sea bed, which had previously been hazarded, it 
may suffice to mention that specimens of the material of which it is 
composed were, for the first time, systematically obtained about ten 
years ago. These consisted, for the most part, of an extremely fine 
mud, with a large proportion of microscopic shells belonging to one 
of the simplest forms of animal life with which we are acquainted. 
Some of the shells retained a considerable portion of the gelatinous 
substance of which the bodies of this class of organisms is com- 
posed. But at this point the evidence failed. For whilst the fact 
of these organisms having been raised from vast depths was too 
clearly established to admit of the slightest doubt, it is manifest that 
they might have been drifted from shallow water by oceanic currents, 
or have lived near the surface of the sea, and gradually subsided to the 
bottom after death. Accordingly, the mere presence of the gelatinous 
substance of which their bodies are formed, when taken in connection 
with the well-known preservative power of sea-water highly charged 
with saline matter, affords no proof whatever of the creatures having 
lived in the localities from which they had been conveyed by the 
sounding-machine. But although the determination of the question 
as to whether animal life can be sustained at such depths was reserved 

1864.] Wallich on the Atlantic Deep-sea Bed and its Inhabitants. 37 

for ft later period, these earlier soundings were not barren of highly 
important results ; for they enabled Professor Ehronberg, on compa- 
rison of the material obtained from the bottom with that entering 
into the formation of chalk, to announce the extraordinary fact, that 
this rock is built up, atom by atom, of shells similar to those met 
with in such profusion along the bed of the ocean ; and further, 
that it must have been deposited under conditions similar to those 
now prevailing ; thereby furnishing the clearest proof that the great 
forces which were in operation at the sea-bed countless ages ago, are 
in operation still ; and will, in all probability, continue to be so 
through all time. 

We now arrive at the period when the survey of the sea-bed 
received a fresh and powerful impulse from the project of establishing 
communication between Europe and America by means of a Telegra- 
phic Cable. With a view to ascertain the general contour and com- 
position of the portion of the Atlantic it was proposed to traverse, an 
expedition was sent by the Government of the United States, to sound 
from shore to shore. But unfortunately, the information elicited in 
the course of this survey was so vitiated by iuacciu-acies as to have in- 
duced the eminent officer, then in charge of the Hydrographic depart- 
ment at Washington, to pronounce it untrustworthy. A second 
expedition was accordingly equipped, under the auspices of the British 
Government. Of the accui'acy of the depths recorded on this occasion 
there could be no doubt. But the intervals between the positions at 
which soundings were taken were so great, and the means of obtaining 
specimens of the bottom so imperfect, that, looking at the matter as 
we now do after the event, it seems impossible to regard the informa- 
tion elicited as in any degree adequate to meet the requirements of 
the enterprise for which the smwey was undertaken.* 

It is true these soundings, as far as they went, indicated no extreme 
alternations of level along the course traversed. But on the other 
hand, nothing could be more hazardous than to assume, because a cer- 
tain degree of uniformity as to dej^th manifests itself at the isolated 
spots on which soundings were taken, that a like degree of uniformity 
must prevail over the wide intervening spaces. Of the spaces them- 
selves we know literally nothing. Nevertheless on these imperfect 
premises was it maintained, and by many persons believed, that the 
entire central tract of the Atlantic, instead of being characterized by 
variations of level and occasional areas of naked and perhaps rugged 
rock, such as we might expect to encounter here and there in a region 
so extended, consists of a level plateau, the entire surface of which is 
covered by a soft stratum of mud, similar to that indicated by the 
earlier soundings. Now, it must be obvious to every one that, however 
steep a submerged declivity may be, unless the depth is ascertained at 
two or more consecutive points, the information elicited 'odll be the 
same as if the sovmding-machine had been di'opped on the most perfect 
level. And accordingly, for aught these soimdlngs have shown to the 

* To render this statement intelligible, it may be mentioned that along 1,300 
miles of the ]\Iid-Atlantic Telegraph route, only forty -one soundings were taken, 
the intervals varying between 32 and 71 geographical milf^?. 

88 Original Articles. [Jan. 

contrary, the bed of tlie Atlantic may present features the most oppo- 
site to those that have been ascribed to it. But let us not be misunder- 
stood. It is neither our intention to assert, nor do we believe, that 
insuperable alternations of level are likely to be encountered. We 
simply deprecate the hasty adoption of a view so unsubstantiated by 
proof, and so calculated, if erroneous, to interfere with the accomplish- 
ment of oae^ the most important enterprises of the day. 

It should be borne in mind, that the supposed plateau does not 
comprise a limited area, but one extending for upwards of a thousand 
miles across the basin of the Atlantic. Now, there is no parallel 
case to this in any portion of the present dry land. And, since 
there is no groimd for the belief that such a vast area could possibly 
have remained unaffected by the agencies which produce modifications 
in the earth's crust elsewhere ; it is — to say the least of it — extremely 
improbable that so signal an exception should occur only along that 
portion of the sea-bed which has been selected as the site of the Tele- 
graphic Cable. We say only, because, judging from soundings taken 
elsewhere, it is manifest that alternations of level are the rule rather 
than the exception, and that, in some cases, they are of an important 

But it is not necessary to have recourse to soundings, in order to 
prove the accm'acy of this opinion. The islands that rise so abruptly 
in many portions of the Atlantic, if reduced somewhat in elevation, 
might occur over and over again within the intervals at which the 
depths have been recorded, and yet be completely overlooked. Their 
existence is known simply because they are lofty enough to appear 
above water. It would be an act of rashness, therefore, to assume that 
formations similar in their character, but of smaller size, do not occur 
in positions where they still remain unrecognized. 

Of what then, it may be asked, does om- knowledge regarding the 
contour and composition of the sea-bed really consist ? The answer 
to this question is by no means unsatisfactory. Thus, it is certain 
that in no region of the ocean in which soundings have heretofore 
been attempted with adequate apparatus, is the depth so inordinate as 
to be beyond reach. It is equally certain that, as a general rule, the 
depths are moderate — that is to say, rarely exceeding 2,500 fathoms, 
or a trifle under three miles ; that, for the most part, the bottom is 
composed of a soft but tenacious mud, consisting either of an admix- 
ture of organic and inorganic debris, or of one of these constituents 
more or less uncombined with the other ; and lastly, and pre-eminently 
perhaps, that deep-seated currents, if they prevail at all, are exceed- 
ingly rare and too feeble to produce the slightest deleterious effect 
upon a submerged Telegraphic Cable. These, we venture to say, are 
no unsatisfactory results when weighed against the limited and imper- 
fect nature of the opportunities that have hitherto been afforded for 
the exploration of the sea-bed ; and so far from being of a dishearten- 
ing tendency, they offer conclusive evidence that the perfection of our 
knowledge with regard to the conditions prevailing along any given 
tract of the sea-bed, falls readily within our powers, and is merely a 
question of time and perseverance, 

1864. 1 Wallich on the Atlantic Deep-sea Bed and its Inhabitants. 3'j 

It would occupy too much space wore wc to cuter iuto the whole 
of the facts bearing on the muddy deposits, with whose presence, over 
a considerable area of the sea-bed, the sounding-machine has made 
us acquainted. But there is one point to wliich we must invite atten- 
tion, inasmuch as its importance can hardly be overestimated, and yet, 
strange to say, it has heretofore been almost entirely overlooked. 

In some of the deeper soundings, both on the North and Mid- 
Atlantic route, fragments of rocks have been brought up. How is 
the occurrence of these to be accounted for, and what does it betoken ? 
The question is an intricate one, and so far as our present information 
goes, does not seem to admit of a perfectly satisfactory solution. 
This much may be said, however ; that their presence on the imme- 
diate surface layer of the sea-bed, is only reconcilable with one or 
other of the following suppositions : — They must either have been 
recently dropped by some means from the superincumbent waters ; 
have been deposited by floating ice during past periods of the earth's 
history ; must occiu? in beds which were once exposed above the sur- 
face of the sea ; or be drifting about the bottom through the action of 

Now in no case hitherto recorded have these stones been of large 
size — jirobably not larger than a hazel nut — but they present un- 
doubted traces of attrition. Fish, as is well known, sometimes 
swallow small stones, and, as a matter of course, get rid of them 
in time ; but this would not meet the requirements of the first of the 
above suppositions, inasmuch as it is obviously improbable that so 
many fish with stones in their stomachs should be moving about the 
ocean, as would be necessary to account for the fact ; and it is still 
more improbable, if not absolutely impossible, that fish could have 
conveyed such substances from the distant shores, where they are 
alone obtainable. So that viewing this circumstance in conjunction 
with the fact, that no floating ice nowadays traverses the areas referred 
to, it is quite certain that the matter is inexplicable on the first sup- 

If deposited from floating ice during past periods of the Earth's 
history (according to the second supposition, which is by no means 
impossible), it follows as an inevitable consequence that the muddy 
deposits are local in chai-acter, and that certain areas of the sea-bed 
consist of bare rock ; or that they are swept away by currents as fast 
as they are j)roduced. We regard the first of these two views as most 
conformable A^ith the evidence ; for, although there is reason to be- 
lieve that deep-seated currents prevail with suflicient force, in some of 
the shallower tracts of the Atlantic, to move the fine particles of 
which these deposits are for the most part composed, there is no 
ground whatever for supposing that they are ever powerful enough to 
sweep along large objects, such as the stones of which we have been 
speaking. It will be seen, therefore, that we are fully justified in 
laying stress on the possibility that extensive areas of exposed rock 
may occur along the basin of the Atlantic, which have hitherto escaped 
detection. The third and fourth suppositions ai"e thus disposed of 

40 Original Articles. [Jan. 

But the facts just set forth, involve another very important con- 
sideration, which, as supporters of no particular creed, we deem it 
necessary to notice. In assuring ourselves of the absence of currents 
as a source of danger in Oceanic Telegraphy, we no doubt gain a 
material point. But to some extent the gain is counterbalanced, and 
in this wise. Assuming that the bed of the present ocean has been 
subject, at some antecedent period of the world's history, to the de- 
nuding action of atmospheric and terrestrial influences, and has thus 
been impressed with characters similar to those we see around us on 
dry land (and that it has been so, there is no valid reason to doubt), 
whatever asperities may have marked its sm'face when it was first sub- 
merged, must remain stamped upon it up to the present time. The 
denuding action of water in a state of motion is very great ; but that 
of water in a state of comparative quiescence, such as prevails along 
the sea-bed, must be extremely limited, if it operates at all. Atmo- 
spheric agencies which wear away the rugged features of one district 
on land and reproduce them on another, are powerless either for good 
or for evil at the sea-bed. And hence it is certain, that however 
much the muddy deposits may be constantly contributing towards the 
toning down of the minor inequalities, they can exercise very little 
effect as regards those more extensive alternations of level, the 
absence of which along the sea has been assumed, solely because the 
means heretofore adopted have been inadequate for their detection. 

But let us now turn to the living tenants of these deep abysses. 
It has already been stated, that although the evidence of the vitality 
of the minute shell-covered creatures, obtained in the course of the 
earlier soundings, was altogether inconclusive, more recent observa- 
tions have established the fact that the conditions prevailing at extreme 
depths are not incompatible with the maintenance of animal life. The 
observations in question were made at the close of 1860, during the 
survey of the North Atlantic route by H.M.S, ' Bulldog.' Into the 
details of these it would be out of place to enter at present ; but the 
proofs they involve, may be stated in a very few words. 

Thirteen living star-fishes, differing in no important particular 
from a species common on our own and most northern coasts, were 
brought up from a depth of 1,260 fathoms — or very nearly a mile and 
a half — at a point midway between the Southern extremity of Green- 
land and Rockall, and 250 miles distant from the nearest land. These 
star-fishes, however, cannot be said to have been captured by the 
sounding-machine, for they came up adhering by their spine-covered 
arms to the last 50 fathoms of the sounding-line, not as voluntary 
exiles from below, but owing to their having coiled themselves around 
a material from which they found it impossible afterwards to disen- 
gage themselves. Now, apart from all other evidence, the facts in 
connection with this particular sounding were sufficient to indicate 
that the star-fishes had been raised from the sea-bed itself, and had 
not grasped the line while floating in some stratum of water inter- 
mediate between it and the sm-face. But, by a singular piece of good 
fortune, the question as to their last resting-place admitted of definite 
determination on evidence that they bore along with them. To com- 

1864.] Wallich on the Atlantio Deep-sea Bed and its Inhabitants. 41 

prehend tlie value of this, it is necessary to mention that hy means 
of a separate observation taken upon the same spot, the bottom was 
foimd to consist almost entirely of the minute shell-covered organisms 
already referred to ; and, taking into consideration the fact that many 
of the shells were completely filled with the gelatinous substance of 
which their bodies are composed, and lastly, the fresh appearance of 
this substance ; the probability is very great that they, in common 
with the star-fishes, had lived and multiplied at the bottom. But the 
only circumstance which ought to be accepted as direct proof of their 
vitality, namely, motion after reaching the surface, was wanting ; as 
indeed it well might be, since the passage through the vertical mile 
and a half of water occupied nearly an hour, and the change of con- 
ditions to which the creatm'cs became subjected, during that period, 
must necessarily have been very great. Nevertheless the chain of 
circumstantial evidence was rendered complete ; for, on examining the 
stomachs of the star-fishes, they were found to contain the minute 
shelled creatures in abundance ; thus clearly establishing the fact of the 
star-fishes having attached themselves to the sounding-line whilst it 
rested on the bottom, and adding the strongest confirmation to the 
view that the minute creatures referred to were brought up from their 
natural habitation. 

But it was not to be expected that a fact so subversive of all pre- 
conceived notions regarding the conditions essential to the presence 
of animal life on the ocean would be received without the usual 
amount of salutary scepticism. And hence, on its being boldly an- 
nounced not only that highly-organized animals had been brought up 
from so vast a depth, but that they actually arrived at the surface in a 
living state, scientific men shi-ugged their shoulders, and demanded 
the production of the most complete proofs. These proofs we submit 
have been produced ; and they serve to show that instead of organic 
life being carried on in defiance of the conditions so erroneously held 
to be incompatible with it, the presence of some of these conditions is 
indispensable to its continuance. In order, however, to render 
■ intelligible the doubts that were expressed on the subject, and the 
precise bearing of the evidence brought forward with a view to dispel 
them, it is necessary to draw attention to the conditions on which the 
determination of the question depends. 

According to the generally accepted opinion regarding the Geo- 
graphical distribution and vertical limits of marine animal life, the 
presence of one set of conditions is essential, that of another incom- 
patible with it. Thus we are told that a certain amount of aeration of 
the water, especially with reference to the quantity of oxygen gas con- 
tained in a given volume, and the previous existence of vegetable life 
in some shape or other, are indispensable to the maintenance of 
animal life ; whereas the increase of pressure beyond a certain degree, 
and the total absence of light, determine the limit in depth beneath 
which, it was contended, no living being could exist. 

Now, although in the present state of our knowledge, it is difficult 
to conceive that any animal, no matter how low in the scale, can live 
in default of a supply of oxygen, we are by no means called upon to 

42 Original Articles. [Jan, 

believe that this gas is in reality absent in sea-water at gi*eat depths.* 
From observations conducted many years ago by an eminent French 
experimentalist, M. Biot, it would appear that the swimming bladder 
of fishes contains a larger quantity of nitrogen than oxygen when they 
happen to have been captured near the surface ; and a larger quantity 
of oxygen than nitrogen when brought up from a depth of a few hun- 
dred fathoms. The researches of other observers would also tend to 
confirm the view that the quantity of oxygen held in solution by sea- 
water increases rather than diminishes with the depth ; and on 
theoretical grounds, moreover, there is reason to believe that the 
presence of oxygen is inseparable from the pressm'e which prevails at 
great depths. 

In the case of creatures belonging to the higher order, as, for 
example, fish, the conditions that have been laid down are no doubt 
indispensable. They cannot suj)port life beyond a comparatively 
moderate depth ; and, as a general rule, it may be taken for granted 
that no living organism, demanding a sujjply of free air for its sus- 
tenance, or whose structure is of such a kind as to be inordinately 
affected by an increase of the pressure to which it is subject in shal- 
lower water, could, by any possibility, survive a single instant after 
descending lower than a few hundred fathoms. But there is a large 
class of creatures, inhabiting the ocean at ordinary depths, whose 
structure is so universally permeable by fluids that, assuming other 
conditions to be favourable and the transitions from a low to a high 
degree of pressure to be suflficiently gradual, it is immaterial whether 
the medium around them be pressed upon by one or by one hundred 
atmospheres. In the case of these creatures, as in that of a human 
being living under ordinary atmospheric pressure, it is only essential 
that the force should opei-ate uniformly both within and without the 
body. Hence, in so far as mere pressure is concerned, there is no 
reason why creatures of the class referred to (and star-fishes are 
amongst the number) should not be able to exist at all depths. 

With regard to the previous manifestation of vegetable life which 
is said to constitute a condition essential to the existence of animals, 
both terrestrial and marine, it is only desirable to point out that, were 
this really a law of natm-e, it would at once negative the assumption 
that animal life can be maintained at extreme depths ; for, if vegetable 
products are indispensable for the nutrition of the animal, and no 
vegetable structm-es are capable of living in default of a certain 
amount of light, inasmuch as no light can possibly penetrate to the 
profounder abysses of the ocean, animal existence must of coui'se be 
rendered impossible. 

But whilst recent explorations of the sea-bed have indubitably indi- 
cated that animals can live at those vast depths, they would also seem 
to show that vegetable life, in any form at least in which we have 
heretofore detected it, is not co-existent ; for whensoever vegetable 
structures have been foimd amongst the organic or inorganic matter of 

* M. Pasteur, the French chemist, in his recent experiments on Ferments, 
has sought to show that some of the so-called Infusoria are able to exist without 

erly Journal of Science ,J^*? 1. 



2". rii\ 1 J ."^/ViDjAUis , Sc . 

y Ig s . ]. to 6 . FORAMIITIFER/^ . PiQ s 7 lo 9 . POLYCYS TINA . 
:' Os . IG Srll.LASMIDffi . ^ic^s.lZtol?. SPOl^GE .SPICUI.ES . 

1864. J Wallioh on the Atlantic Deep-sea Bed and its Inhabitants. 43 

the deposits, the peculiar condition of their soft ])arts has invariably 
been such as to indicate their having lived in shallower zones, and 
only descended to the bottom on life becoming extinct. It is mani- 
fest, therefore, that the law referred to, however stringently it may 
apply to terrestrial life, admits of exceptions in the case of marine 
forms. How these exceptions are provided against remains yet to be 

But, it may be asked, what are these mysterious little atoms of 
which so much has been said, and which play so important a part, not 
only in the composition of the present sea-bed, but of vast tracts of 
existing dry land. For the benefit of those who have not directed their 
attention to the sitbject, we append the following brief particulars and 
the accompanying Illustrations. 

The animal, as already stated, is one of the lowest in the scale of 
creation. It consists of a minute particle of viscid matter, not imlike 
the fluid but yet granidar portions of honey both as to consistence 
and coloui-, and like honey devoid of organization. Nevertheless it 
possesses vital contractility, and the power of altering its shape to any 
extent. The little mass is not naked, however, but in virtue of another 
vital faculty inherent in it, is able to extract calcareous matter from 
the water in which it lives, and re-secrete it in the form of the ex- 
quisite shells known to natm-alists under the name of Foraminifera. 
In the deep-sea species to which we are particularly referring, the 
shells consist generally of a number of chambers ranged in more or 
less symmetrical order, and each communicating with the rest and 
with the outer world by one large aperture, and a number of minute 
pores studded over the entire surface. Through these, the little animal 
is continually projecting, and as continually retracting, delicate thread- 
like feelers, composed of the same substance as the rest of the body. 
By means of these feelers it performs the movements of which it is 
capable, and, in all probability, is enabled to provide itself with food. 
Hence it will be understood why it was stated, in a former portion of 
these observations, that in the absence of these movements it becomes 
almost impossible to determine whether the object before us is alive 
or dead. 

But although this wonderful little creature demands special notice, 
owing to the share it takes in the comj)osition of the deep-sea deposits, 
numberless other forms are to be met with, equally simple in their 
nature, but still more beautiful in their structure. And this leads us, 
in the last place, to inquire whether or not there is reason to aj^prehend 
danger from their attacks upon a submerged Telegraphic Cable. 

On this point we can speak with confidence. If there be any source 
through which the abrasion of a cable, either by contact ■ndth other 
substances, or the attacks of creatm-es able to bore into its coverings 
and thus destroy or impair its insulation, may be obviated, it is through 
the gradual incrustation that these humble shell-builders are sm-e to 
form around it. Accordingly it becomes of the utmost importance to 
select, as far as is practicable, those areas of the sea-bed which are 
covered by the foraminiferous deposits, and to avoid those which are 
bare. Minute Annelids unquestionably exist even at the gi-eatest depths. 

44 Original Articles. [Jan. 

and amongst these there are some capable of doing mischief. That 
they can penetrate gutta-percha solely by means of the boring organs 
with which they are provided, we altogether disbelieve. But, in most 
cases, there is ground for suspecting that their penetrative powers are 
materially aided by secretions capable of acting chemically on the sub- 
stances attacked. Of the nature of the secretion, or its possible eifect on 
caoutchouc or gutta-percha, we know nothing. But this is no reason for 
repudiating the possibility of an event, which if brought about only once, 
in the 2,000 miles of cable, would prove fatal to its working integrity. 
It only remains to be added, that we are no alarmists. We would 
neither conjure up, magnify, nor ignore danger. What we desire and 
believe to be indispensable, if telegraphic communication across the 
Atlantic is to be viewed in any other light than as a source of national 
chagrin, is that measures should be forthwith adopted to add to the 
scanty information we already possess regarding the sea-bed; under 
the firm conviction that whatever difficulties may present themselves, 
they require only to be understood to ensure their being surmounted. 

II. The Atlantic Cable and its Teachings. 
By William Ckookes, F. E. S. 

Theeb is scarcely a question of more importance at the present day, 
than that of telegraphic communication with India. When these pages 
are before the public the line which is to connect the two hemispheres 
will be en route to its destination ; and judging by the vast experience 
acciunulated during the construction and laying of the old Atlantic 
line, and the invaluable evidence wliich on its demise was elicited at 
the inquest, there is every reasonable hope that the new enterprise will 
be successful. 

A great amount of misconception prevails respecting the now 
defunct Atlantic cable, and pending the successful termination of the 
undertaking now in progress, we propose to disinter from the pon- 
derous official documents some portions of its history which are not 
generally known, and, with the aid of other material now before us, to 
examine what is the reasonable prospect of success or failiu'e in other 
similar undertakings. 

The problem to be solved is comprised in a very small compass. 
There is not much difficulty in making a cable perfect as to its 
electrical conditions, and should any flaw or faulty part happen to 
pass the first scrutiny, skilled electricians can at once detect it. The 
great difficulty which now weighs like an incubus upon every large 
undertaking of this kind, is to submerge the rope without injury. 
There is now an absolute certainty of making a cable of any length 
perfect, but we destroy it in attempting to get it to the bottom of the 
sea. If the insulated wire, in as good a state as when it leaves the 
contractor's works, could but be transferred uninjured to the ocean's 
bed, it would lie there as quietly as if it were at the bottom of a well, 
and would last for hundreds of years. 

1864.] Ceookes on the Ailantic Cable and its Teachings. 45 

Unfortunately, the first-laid submarine cables were attended with 
complete success ; these precedents were used as arguments against 
any further investigation, and hence the hasty enterprise of the Atlan- 
tic cable, involving an expenditure of three-quarters of a million, was 
rushed into in the most recldess manner, and with so utter a dis- 
regard of precautions, as to seem from the first actually to invite 

The perfection of a cable depends upon the perfection of each 
individual inch of it ; in this respect it is similar to a chain, which is 
valueless if a single link be faulty. The insulating covering of the 
conductor is composed of substances so delicate in texture, and laid on 
in such a manner as to render it extremely difficult to avoid faults. 
These are generally noticed as soon as they appear, and by taking the 
precaution to test the cable in definite lengths under water, they can 
be readily detected at any time, and their position ascertained. W hat 
is generally known as a fault, is a commimication between the 
conducting wire and the water ; this may be either very slight, in 
"which case, the insulation is more or less injured, or it may be 
sufficient for the whole of the electricity to leak through. A small 
fault, which would not be of serious consequence in a short line, 
cannot be tolerated when the cable is of considerable length, as the 
powerful cui-rents necessary to force a signal through, find out all the 
weak points, and eat them into fatal holes. There is another reason 
why faults or even weak places must not be admitted in submarine 
lines ; it is that they are so liable to injury through lightning. In 
the Channel Islands' telegraph, the lightning struck the cable in 
Jersey, and j)assing under the sea along the wire for sixteen miles in 
the direction of Guernsey, met with a weak place, where it burnt itself 
through into the water, destroying the insulation. 

The material of the outer covering of the cable, and the manner 
in which it is laid on, are matters of great importance. There must 
be no strain on the core, and the finished cable must have as little 
elasticity as possible. Many cables have been injured from a neglect 
of this precaution : an elastic rope will stretch foiu" or five per cent, 
during deposition, and will contract when the tension is removed and 
the temperature is lowered by the sui-rounding water. The copper 
wdre is however permanently stretched, and where the gutta-j)ercha 
contracts over it, the wire occasionally knuckles thi-ough and produces 
a serioiis leakage. The outer coat of mail is almost invariably of a 
spiral form, which perhaps is the only kind that could be adopted, 
having regard to the frequent ceilings and uncoilings which the rope 
has to go through, but such a form is very liable to kink whenever the 
rope is not kept in a state of tension. 

The copper of which the conducting wire is now invariably made, 
should be selected with the greatest care. When pure it is one of 
the best solid conductors known ; but very slight impiu'ities, such as 
are almost always met with in the commercial metal, are sufficient to 
greatly diminish its value. Taking the conducting power of pure 
copper as 100, Dr. Matthiessen found that of samples of American, 
Australian, Eussian, and Spanish copper to be respectively 92, 88, 

46 Original Articles. [Jan. 

59, and 14. Since these results have been made known, the wire is 
always contracted for of a certain specified conducting value per mile. 

Much has been said about the deterioration of gutta-percha when 
exposed to the air, and the great difficulty of avoiding flaws in laying 
it on the wire ; these evils are however greatly magnified. The rot- 
ting will not proceed under water, and even in air it may be prevented 
by a coat of Stockholm tar, whilst the small and unavoidable flaws are 
perfectly guarded against by applying several successive coatings to 
the wire. Other complaints brought against gutta-percha, are that 
it does not insulate very perfectly when warm, and also that it 
is liable to soften. These are reasons against unnecessary exposure 
of the cable to heat before its submergence, but are of no consequence 
when once it is laid. At the bottom of the ocean everything is in 
favom* of its permanence. The surrounding sheath of tar tightly held 
in iron wires, the low temperature of the water, the preservative pro- 
perties of the sea, the absence of light and air, and the enormous 
pressure to which it is subjected, are all elements tending to improve 
the lasting and insulating properties of gutta-percha. 

Many of the most important facts above referred to have been 
ascertained since the Atlantic Cable was manufactured, but they 
ought to have preceded instead of succeeded so important an imder- 
taking. This could have been done easily by an expenditure, 
trifling when compared with the amount at stake, and it would have 
supplied the Company with knowledge which has been pm'chased at 
three quarters of a million sterling. There was far too much haste in 
the preliminary stages of the imdertaking. It was looked upon 
merely as a commercial speculation, and in order to raise the requisite 
funds, promises to the shareholders were most rashly made. Whilst 
the Company was only formed in 1856, the line was undertaken to be 
laid in 1857, and in order to keep faith with the public, the prelimi- 
nary experiments and investigations, which ought to have occupied 
the highest available talent for some years, were hurried over in the 
most reckless manner, or were left to be completed by chance. In- 
deed, the most important piece of machinery in the whole affair, that 
for paying out the cable,— an apparatus which would have to run as 
smoothly as a cotton mill for every minute of the time occupied in 
that operation, the slightest hitch or irregularity snapping the cable, 
— was literally being put together for the first time as the ship was 
sailing to its destination, and was entrusted, untried, with its precious 
charge. The result may be anticipated. A stoppage in the machinery 
occiuTed, and 335 miles of cable were sacrificed at the shrine of 
official incompetence. 

Another great mistake was to have such a rope made of any but 
the very strongest materials. It was intended at first that the outer 
covering should be of steel wire, but this could not be adopted owing to 
the unfortunate promise made by the directors that it should be laid in 
1857. Had another year been permitted to elapse, and, instead of 
iron coating, had steel been employed, there is every probability that 
the cable would have been at work at the present day. Instead of 
a breaking strain of three tons it would have borne uninjured a pull 

1004. J l^ituoEia on the Atlantic Cauie una .1^ j.tacning8. 47 

of twenty tons, enough, if requisite, to have anchored the ' Agamem- 
non' in the middle of the Atlantic, and to have endured without 
damage any inuigiuaWe vagaries of the paying-out machinery. The 
ohjections that steel cahles do not coil as well as irtjn, and seem " all 
alive " from their springiness, are not of much weight, as the enormous 
surplus strength would enable them to bear a considerable amoimt of 
hard usage in stowing them away. 

In paying out a cable much depends upon its being properly coiled. 
This was certainly well done in the Atlantic line, and it is doubtless 
to this fact that the last successful jjaying is to be attributed. 
Dui'ing the whole process of paying out a kink never once occm-red ; 
in fact it uncoiled itself, for the men who were stationed in the hold 
to imdo the lashings, and be ready in case of accident, scarcely were 
required to touch it once. 

Few people can imagine the gi'cat mechanical difficulties to be 
overcome in laying a long cable. Owing to the difficulty of making 
the joinings properly at sea, the rope cannot be carried out in more 
than two portions, and there are very few ships capable of conveying 
the required load in the necessary manner. An electric cable is a 
difficult thing to coil, indeed no one, who inspects it in short lengths, 
would believe it capable of being coiled at all ; the cable must, there- 
fore, be laid in the hold, in as large a circle as possible, and the space 
occupied must be perfectly clear from cross-beams, or perpendicular 
supports for the deck. The cable must be placed so as to load the 
vessel evenly, and must be so paid out that she shall preserve an even 
keel, otherwise water ballast must be admitted to keep the vessel in 
trim. Moreover, with a long cable, the vessel employed should be 
a steamer of sufficient dimensions not only to contain it, but coals as 
well for the entire voyage, for, if stowed in a sailing vessel and towed 
by a steamer, the ship becomes in a heavy sea unmanageable, and in 
case of a hitch occurring, it is almost imj)ossible to check her progress 
in time to prevent accident. A cable long enough to span the 
Atlantic will weigh at least 6,000 tons, and when coals must be carried, 
and in addition a clear sjDace provided sufficient to enable this enormous 
length of cable to be coiled, it is evident that no existing vessel 
except the ' Great Eastern,' would be equal to the requirements of the 
case. The hands employed in liberating the cable coiled in the hold 
have a difficult task to perform even when the sea is calm and every- 
thing goes on smoothly. When at full speed the coils have to be 
carefully liberated, layer by layer, from the lashings and packings of 
wood, so as to set free only so much of the cable as is required, so 
as to avoid the possibility of its escaping from the giiides on receiving 
any check. The break is a part of the aj)paratus which requires the 
most delicate handling ; the strain which it puts on must be sufficient 
to prevent the cable from running out with too gi-eat a velocity in pro- 
portion to the speed of the vessel, whilst it must be sensitive to every 
pitch and roll, in order to prevent the cable from being snapped by a 
sudden strain. Many self-acting breaks have been proposed, but in 
practice nothing has been found so effectual for the regidation of tho 
strain as constant personal superintendence. The speed at which the 

48 Original Articles. [Jan. 

paying-out vessel travels should be as uniform as possible througliout 
the whole voyage, and as provision must be made for contrary winds 
and rough weather, a large amoimt of surplus power is indispensable. 
In fair weather it is not difficult to attend to all these precautions, 
nothing but proper care and attention being necessary ; but in stormy 
weather, when the vessel is tossing to such an extent that the men can 
scarcely stand while unlashing and freeing the cable, when the pitch- 
ing of the ship throws sudden and violent strains upon the break, and 
when the breaksman himself can scarcely keep his feet, and can see 
nothing in the darkness, the difficulty in managing the apparatus pro- 
perly is of no ordinary kind. 

An indicator is attached to the break, which is supposed to show 
the strain upon it, but, owing to its inertia, such an instrument is of 
very little value for obviating sudden jerks. For instance, on the 
occasion of the first snapping of the Atlantic Cable, the indicator 
showed a strain of only 35 cwt., although the cable was supj)osed to be 
able to resist a strain of 60 cwt. 

Dm-ing the paying out of the Atlantic Cable great doubts were en- 
tertained of its permanent success, owing to the serious faults which 
soon became apparent. The ' Niagara ' and ' Agamemnon ' having 
met and joined their respective halves of the cable in the middle of the 
Atlantic, started thence and proceeded, one to Newfoundland, the other 
to Valencia Bay, in Ireland, electrical signals being constantly passed 
from one ship to the other. At one point, when nearly 400 miles had 
been paid from each ship, the electrical signals became very weak, and 
the tests applied by the electrician on board the ' Agamemnon,' showed 
that there was defective insulation at a very remote part of the cable. 
The fault then seemed to get better, and in about an horn" the cable 
tested as usual. Three days afterwards, when about 560 miles had 
been paid out from each vessel, considerable irregularities were ob- 
served, the signals becoming weaker, imtil it was reported from the 
electrical cabin that they had ceased altogether. They shortly after- 
wards returned, and gradually improved for some hours, when they 
became as strong as ever. In fact, on the evening of this day 
(August 2), the signals from the ' Niagara ' were reported to be stronger 
than they had been previously. Other irregularities in transmission 
were afterwards observed, but the general working of the cable seemed 
good, and on referring to the memoranda taken by the electricians at 
the time, we find the signals spoken of as " good " in the morning of 
the 3rd of August, " first rate " about the middle of tlie day, and 
" perfect " in the evening. The next day we have reports of constant 
signals from one ship to the other, and the memorandum " all right," 
is repeated several times. On the 5th of August, at 2.10 a.m., the 
' Niagara ' signalled that she had paid out 1,000 miles of cable, and at 
8.50 A.M., the ' Agamemnon ' had paid out the same quantity. At that 
time, intelligible signals were passing through the 2,000 miles of cable, 
from one end to the other, and in a few hours each ship was safely at 

Thus, then, the possibility of connecting the two continents by an 
electric cable was proved and considering the unjustifiable haste and 

1861. j CuooKES 071 the Atlantic Cable and Its Teachiwjs. 49 

disregard of necessary precautions, more than this could not bo expected. 
Indeed, it was scarcely anticipated during tlic paying out, that any result 
whatever would be gained. Tlie many coilings uiid uucoilings which 
the rope had undergone, had undcnibtedly causod injury. The leakage 
at Keyhara was very great, and many bad 2>laeeK were cut out ; but as 
the cable was not once tested under water before its actual submergence, 
some imperfections necessarily escai)cd detection. 

It soon became evident that very serious faults existed in the cable ; 
its capability of conveying signals varied greatly, going and coming at 
uncertain intervals, and sometimes stopping altogether ; and when 
to this was superadded the tedious nature of the signalling, owing to 
induction, it is somewhat surjirisiug that any intelligible messages 
passed through its whole length. Indeed, had it not been for Professor 
Thompson, who, without fee or reward, threw himself heart and soid 
into the atiair, the cable most probably would not have si)oken at all. 

Even when the wire worked well, the sluggishness of the current 
was a serious obstacle to the reading of the signals. If the 2,000- 
mile wire had been suspended in air, the signals from one end to the 
other would have been practically instantaneous ; but sm-rounded as it 
was with iron and water, great retardation took j^lace from induction, 
thi'ee or more seconds being reqviired for the electric wave to pass along 
the whole distance. If the discharge at the one end were effected 
as rapidly and sharply as the charge at the other end, the time occupied 
in the transmission w'ould be of no consequence, but unfortunately the 
discharge is always slower than the charge, and consequently a series 
of sharp crisp dots signalled into the wire at Valencia, would be 
smeared into a continuous line when they came out at Newfoundland. 
On this account words coidd only be transmitted very slowly, the 
highest speed actually attained being 41 words in 15 minutes. 
At one time, indeed, two clerks conversed at the rate of 4 words a 
minute, but most of these words were abbreviated or guessed at before 
half spelt, so that for ordinary messages, the highest attainable speed 
may be put down at 25- words a minute. 

On the 10th of August, the fii'st words were sent from America to 
Ireland, but although the whole day was occupied in such messages 
as "Eepeat, please," "Please send slower for the present," "How 
do you receive?" "Please say if you can read this," "How are 
signals ?" " Please send something ;" and the second day was occupied 
in similar messages and requests to " Send alphabet," and " Send V 
slowly," Valencia, like a coy maiden, refused to respond to these 
entreaties. On the third day, Valencia showed signs of thawing, and 
condescended to obey the request contained in the following message 
sent from America : — " If this received, send battery cm'rent in one 
direction five minutes." The next day when America signalled — 
" Send word Atlantic," Valencia was able to reply, " Atlantic :" (this 
was the first word read in America.) We then find several words 
from Valencia in answer to American entreaties, but during the whole 
of this day, America was signalling to Valencia such messages as 
these : — " We receive cm-rents, but can't read you," " Can't read.' "You 
must send slower, as some of yom- dots do not show on most delicate 

VOL. I. E 

50 Original Articles. [Jan, 

detectors," " We get your currents, but so irregularly, that we cannot 
read them ; will you examine your key well ? " On the fifth day, 
Valencia thawed a little more, and actually asked America to " Send 
faster ;" but although several long messages were sent on that day 
from America, only isolated words were received in reply. On the 
seventh day, Valencia and America seem to have arrived at a better 
understanding -^ith each other, and Valencia asked, " Can you take a 
message ? " with the warning, " You must repeat each sentence in 
full." Upon receiving an affirmative reply, Valencia telegraphed : — 
" Directors of Atlantic Telegraph Company, Great Britain, to Directors 
in America : Em-ope and America are united by telegraph. ' Glory to 
God in the highest ; on earth peace, good-will towards men.' Repeat 
back faster. Queen's nest." After America had telegraphed back 
the above message, the Queen's message was sent. This consisted 
of ninety-nine words, and occupied altogether sixteen hours in its 
transmission ; many parts were rei^eated over and over again, and the 
whole message was signalled back to ensm'e accuracy. After this, 
owing to the greater delicacy in the reading instruments, and 
especially to Professor Thomj)sou's beautiful reflecting galvano- 
meter, several long messages were sent backwards and forwards ; 
America, however, always doing the greater part of the talking. On 
the tenth day, very good signals came, and Valencia asked for the 
messages to be sent faster. The telegram respecting the collision 
between the ' Arabia ' and ' Europe,' was sent on that day from America, 
and it was followed by the President's message to the Queen. 

Professor Thompson was at this time constantly engaged uj)on ex- 
periments, and the result of these was that the cable spoke much more 
intelligibly, complimentary messages being sent between the directors 
and many public men, and several long directions on the details of 
working the instruments. From this time the cable seemed to im- 
prove, and on the twenty-second day the memorable Government mes- 
sages were sent to America, countermanding the return of the 62nd 
and 39th Regiments, thereby saving to the British Government the 
sum of 50,000Z. 

To give our readers some idea of the difficulty experienced in 
forcing information through the wire, we copy verbatim the conversa- 
tion which took place in reference to these desi)atches at the two 
extremities of the wire. Valencia speaks to Newfoundland at 1.30 
p.m. on August 31 : — 

"Can you read? We have two Government messages. Will you take? 
Eeply direct." 

Newfoundland. — " Try, but send." 

Valencia. — "The Military Secretary to Commander-in-Chief, Horse 
Guards, London, to General Trollope, Halifax, Xova Scotia : — The Sixty- 
second Regiment is not to return to England." 

Neivfoundland. — " This received : — ' 'Jhe Military Secretary to Com- 
mander-in-Chief, Horse Guards, London.' " 

" ' Trollope,' understand, go on after ' Scotia.' " 

" Is it finished after ' England ? ' " 

] 864.] Crookes on the Atlantic Cable and its Teachings. 51 

Valencia. — " Yes. Now take another. Are you ready ? " 

Neivfoundland. — " Yes, send." 

Valencia. — • " The Military Secretary to Commander-in-Chief, Horse 
Guards, to General Officer Commanding, Montreal, Canada : — The Tiiirty- 
ninth Regiment is not to return to England." 

Newfoundland. — " I want you to re2)eat ' Canada.'" 

Valencia, — " Can't read. Try Daniel's." 

Neivfoundland. — "Repeat from ' Canada' to ' return.'" 

Valencia. — "Canada : — The Thirty-ninth Regiment is not to return." 

Ne wfoundland. — ' ' Understand ." 

The above occuiiicd eleven hours in transmission. 

On the 30th of August, Mr. Field telegraphed from America, as 
follows : — " Early in the morning of September 1, Please send me 
message that I can read at the celebration that day, and another on 
the 2nd that I can read at dinner that evening." Accordingly on the 
1st of September, Valencia telegi'aphed the following message to 
C. W. Field, New York : — " The Directors are on their way to 
Valencia, to make ari'angements for oj)ening wire to public. They 
convey through cable to you and yom- fellow-citizens their hearty 
congratulations and good wishes, and cordially sympathize in your 
joyous celebration of the great international work." 

Up to this time the condition of the line may be said to have 
imdergone slight improvement. Several long and important com- 
munications had been sent through it, and it was on the eve of being 
formally opened for commercial pm-poses, when, without any ascer- 
tained caiise, a collapse took place, and the Atlantic Telegraph 
suddenly became defmact ; its death being the more ignominious when 
we take into account the message, in the utterance of which it expired. 
From this date no other sentence could be forced thi-ough, and wdth 
the exception of isolated words and signals dmdng the month of 
September, all attempts to restore communication failed. As late 
indeed as October 20th, eight words of a sentence were spoken 
through the cable from Newfoundland to Valencia, but this was 
owing to the employment of recklessly energetic battery power, and 
may be looked upon as the spasmodic twitchings of a galvanized 
corpse, rather than healthy vitality. 

Let us now try to ascertain the causes of this gigantic failure, and 
see whether the experience so dearly gained renders a similar imder- 
taking likely to be reasonably successful. It must be confessed that 
from the first success was almost hopeless. Everything connected with 
the manufacture of the rope and its subsequent treatment was con- 
ducted in such a hurried and reckless manner, that few who knew all 
the circumstances were surprised at its failm-e. Before the cable was 
laid there was great neglect in the electrical department, and the 
manufactm-e was carried on throughout without proper supervision. 
At the whim of any dilettante experimentalist, the cable w^as cut 
through and through without hesitation, and the joints were fre- 
quently cobbled up most disgi'acefully. It has been estimated that 
there were upwards of 100 imnecessary cuts, and several imperfect 
joints have been exhibited, any one of which would be amply sufficient 


52 Original Articles. [Jan. 

to account for the sudden cessation and reappearance of the signalling ; 
indeed it has been stated on good authority that skilled servants of the 
Gutta Percha Company who were sent to the contractor's works for 
the express purpose of uniting the various sections of the cable in as 
perfect a manner as possible, were dismissed because they made the 
joints too slowly, and their places were supplied by other workmen. 
But even then, if skilled electricians had tested the cable properly 
under water, they ought to have found out the locality of the defects 
before it was too late to remedy them. When too late it was found 
that a very serious fault existed about 420 miles from the coast of 
Ireland. It may be reasonably assumed that this was one of the im- 
perfect joints — good enough to carry the current without betraying 
itself before the paying out, but — seriously weakened by the repeated 
ceilings and uncoilings that the cable had undergone. This was 
broken by the strain upon it during the paying out, was temporarily 
brought together again when lodged on the bed of the ocean, and 
finally succumbed under the burning discharges from the gigantic in- 
duction coils used during some part of the short e dstence of the line. 

Public attention is now being directed to the Persian Gulf cable, 
which will supply the one link wanting to connect this country vnth 
India. If the Atlantic disaster has done nothing else, it has proved 
the possibility of signalling through vast distances of submarine wire, 
whilst it has given to practical men such a fund of experience as to 
render a failure of the Indian line well-nigh impossible. Without 
going into the details of its construction we may briefly state that 
the copper wire possesses the highest practicable conducting value ; 
the remote chance of holes or faulty places ^n the four sm-roundiDg 
layers of gutta-percha has been removed by an intermediate layer of 
Chatterton's highly insulating compound ; the cable has been not only 
kept under water whilst at the manufacturer's works, but is carried in 
water-tanks on board ship to its destination, and its electrical con- 
dition is tested daily ; whilst the outer coating of tarred hemp acts as 
a protection to the iron armour, and prevents the twisting action 
occasioned by the rapid passage of the wire spirally throi;gh the water 
dui'ing the paying out ; for when the cable passes down like a screw 
through a nut, there is a great liability to kink. 

When the cable left this island it was as electrically perfect as we 
can reasonably hope to get such a line in the present state of our 
knowledge, and the subsequent operation of paying out has been 
reduced to such certainty, that there is no doubt whatever about 
the eventual success of the enterprise. In the submarine lines 
hitherto laid, all the failures have been due to definite causes which 
can be readily guarded against. Possibly other causes of failure still 
remain to be traced out and surmounted, but we cannot imagine any 
combination of untoward circumstance which could afiect the ultimate 
successful working of the Persian Gulf line. The greatest depth of 
water in which it will be laid is 60 fathoms, and should an accident 
happen during the paying out, causing the rope to snap, or should the 
electricians at either end discover leakage of insulation, or stoppage of the 
current, there will not be the least difficulty in fishing up and repair- 

18G4.] Mallet on EarthquaJces. 53 

ing the damaged portion. As an instance of the certainty with which 
the electrical tests now employed can point out the exact locality of a 
fault, we may meutitm that in one deep-sea line a defect was detected 
by the instrmnents to exist IDO miles out at sea. A ship repaired to 
the sjjot, undcrrau the cable, and found the calculation correct within a 
mile. This being mended, the electricians immediately said that their 
tests showed another fault about 112 miles farther. This also was 
found to be the case, Avith scarcely more error than in the former 
instance. The bed of the Gulf is admirably adapted for the safe pre- 
servation of a cable, being free from those great variations of depth and 
rocky eminences which eiiectcd the ruin of the Eed Sea cable. In that 
instance the line was laid too tensely, and was suspended consequently 
in festoons between the numerous rocks. It had ample strength to 
bear its o^ti weight in this position, and at fii'st experienced no harm. 
Gradually however, barnacles, seaweeds, &c., found it a convenient 
resting-place ; and in coiu'se of time they accmuulated on the rope to 
such an extent, as to cause it to break under the additional strain. 
In the new undertaking, the remote possibility of such an occurrence 
as this will be avoided by paying out abundance of slack wherever the 
soundings show much undulation of the sea bottom. 

The success which must attend the Persian Gulf cable, and the 
near approach to certainty of an equally good result in other sub- 
marine lines now in progress, ought to remove much of the financial 
difficulty in inaugurating another attempt to connect England with 
America. The first line proved the possibility of transmitting mes- 
sages across the whole width of the Atlantic. This alone was worth 
all the expenditure incurred ; and if the j)romoters of the new line 
make use only of the information which the death of the old cable 
elicited, the public will have no reason to regret the tkree quarters of 
a million sterling, now feeding the fishes in the cool depths of the 


By Robert Mallet, C.E., F.R.S. 

Over a large portion of England, people were startled from sleep, 
shaken by an invisible hand, in the night of the 5-6 October last 
(1863). A few, at once — and most persons after awhile — realized the 
the fact that they had experienced an Earthquake, and escaped un- 
harmed. Amongst the tens of thousands thus aroused, who compared 
notes at breakfast, as to their own reception of the mysterious visitant, 
how few had, or have at this moment, any notion of the narrow margin 
dm-ing that sudden and evanescent throb, which divided their own 
fates, between safety and one of the most terrible forms of death — 
that of being buried, bruised, broken, suflbcated, or perhaps burnt alive, 
beneath the overthrown ruin of their own hearth and home. Slight 
as was this shock compared with those of other lands, of the terrors 

54 Original Articles. [Jan. 

of whicli we delight to read — as of those of war or shipwreck — it well 
might startle those who felt it, if ignorance were not here bliss to 
nearly all of us. The pulse that careered over the face of England 
on that night, like the breeze that sweeps over, and waves a field of 
standing corn, was probably not greater in the velocity of its wave 
particle than is the velocity which imparts the shock one may feel by 
dropping on his heels from a stone-step six inches in height ; but had 
its wave velocity been only as great as that produced by dropping in 
like manner from the height of a chair, it would have laid in ruins 
numbers of our English towns, and would have given us a sharp 
experience, by the loss of life and property, of the mourning and woe 
that are so often the lot of Earthquake coimtries. 

Indeed, amongst the many natural gifts, referable to Geographical 
position and Geological structure with which Great Britain has been 
so lavishly endowed by Providence, none has been more important 
(though little recognized) in permitting our national development, 
than our immunity from frequent or severe Earthquakes. We may in 
this respect, but in a different sense from him of old, " thank God that 
we are not as other men are." A single shock, no greater in 
violence than those which occur almost monthly, within less than 
2,000 miles of us (in the Mediterranean Seismic Bands) — one, namely, 
the velocity of whose wave particle should be no more than 12 to 
15 feet per second (not so fast as we sometimes move in a car- 
riage), would not only split and prostrate minster, spire, and column, 
but would leave Manchester, Liverpool, or London, moimtainous 
heaps of brickdust, and rubbish. Terrible as are the consequences 
of such utter overthrows in the cities of other lands, oiu- arti- 
ficial conditions would add new horrors to the overturning of our own ; 
for besides the conflagration that almost always succeeds the down- 
fall, ignited by the buried household fires or lights, we should have 
superadded, the falling in of great sewers, with the overflow of 
their polluted streams amidst the ruins; the damming, more or 
less, or great tidal rivers like the Thames, by falling bridges ; burst 
ancf spouting water mains; gas escaping and exj)loding in all sorts 
of cavities amidst these over-ground "goafs," viaducts and iron 
bridges brought to the ground by their own inertia, tunnels col- 
lapsed — coal and salt pits and mines ruined — roof and floor in a 
moment brought together — complications of horrors such as can be 
even but inadequately imagined. Happily there is little chance of 
such a catastrophe. Enough has ali-eady been ascertained, as to the 
distribution in space over the earth's sm'face of Seismic or Earthquake 
energy, to admit of our affirming the extreme improbability of the 
occurrence of any great Earthquake in the British Islands ; but there 
is no physical reason why such an event might not occur to-morrow, 
and it is certain also that the Seismic Bands, i. e. the great ribbon-like 
spaces of maximum Earthquake energy, distributed over the surface 
of our earth, and which may be seen laid down upon the Seismic 
mercator of the world, in the British Association Earthquake Cata- 
logue,* are given to wander, and that we have perilously bad neigh- 

* 28th Keport, 1858. 

1864.] Mallet on Eariliqnalces. 55 

bours not so far away to the north and south of us, so that a time may 
arrive, when some remote posterity of our own may become partakers 
in, if not successors to, their inisi' )rtunes. But although our country 
is thus happily placed in one of the quieter havens of this heaving 
world (upon the surface of which not a day passes without an Earth- 
quake somewhere, nor any eight consecutive months without one great 
enough to prostrate buildings over thousands of square miles), and is 
so circumstanced as never to be very violently shaken, yet we are shaken 
much more frequently than people generallyimagine ; and now and then, 
as on the late occasion, the shock is sufficiently severe to be of a very 
awakening character. 

Since the 11th century, there are upon record as occurring in the 
British Islands, including the Hebrides, nearly 240 Earthquakes. 

Statistics have been tabulated which indicate the probability that 
up to the end of the 17th century not more than one-twelfth of the 
Earthquakes that occm-red in Great Britain were recorded at all, nor 
more than one-half, up to the end of the 18th centiu-y. And at the 
present moment, there is good ground to conclude that about two 
Earthquakes per week shake the soil of England, Scotland, or Ireland, 
^nthout counting minute and continually repeated vibratory jars, such, 
as those long remarked at Comrie in Scotland. Now and then, some 
of these British shocks are not quite to be despised ; for example, on 
the 13th of August, 1816, an Earthquake, that extended with violence 
over more than 100 square miles of Scotland, shook down part, and 
twisted upon its base the whole of the spire of the chm-ch of Aberdeen. 
On March 17th, 1843, an Earthquake, great enough to damage build- 
ings, occurred in the North of England, and reached from Northumber- 
land down to Flintshire, and from the Isle of Man to beyond Cheshire ; 
and no longer ago than on the 9th November, 1852, a shock which 
threw down strong walls at Shi'ewsbury, extended over the British 
Islands from Dumbarton nearly to Dartmoor, in Devon — and fi'om 
Enniskillen, in Ireland, to Gainsboro' in Lincolnshire. 

Nothing was so remarkable in the mass of letters from Correspon- 
dents as to the late Earthquake (of October) with which ' The Times ' 
and other Papers were for a few days afterwards filled, as the dense 
ignorance that prevails amongst all classes as to the nature of these 
j)henomena, and of the circumstances that it is desirable to observe with 
respect to them. 

One writer's letter contains literally but two facts, that " he felt 
something " which he thought must have been an Earthquake— and that 
" he got up, and immediately lighted a candle," — he might have added, 
that in this case he did not put it imder a bushel ! The pseudo-scientific 
" communications " chiefly record the exact state of Barometer and 
Thermometer at the moment of shock ; facts now known to be nearly 
as irrelevant as the price of Consols the day before. Nor is this ignor- 
ance confined to the more " ignoble vidgar," for a professed Meteoro- 
logist, for the benefit of the public at large, prints in 'The Times' a 
string of inquiries to which he demands answers, but which jjoint to 
nothing so clearly as the Avriter's ignorance of the subject that he 
meddled with, and which he seems to think is still, as in the venerable 

56 Original Articles. [Jan. 

days of Aristotle, a branch of Meteorology ; at tte same time we happen 
to know that that Journal declined to give publicity to a carefully drawn 
up series of inquiries prepared for it by a competent person. 

The fact is that Seismology — which has only become a science 
since 1846, and has since advanced with very rapid strides — has as yet 
not become diffused at all widely, even amongst the proper brotherhood 
of Science, and no attempt has been made to popularize it for the less 
informed reader. It occupies just now about the same relative position 
that Ice Theories did in 1837, when at the Liverpool Meeting of the 
British Association, the very first Paper that appeared in English on 
the Motion of Glaciers was read (on sufferance) in the Geological sec- 
tion ; the President observing that, " as the topmost and most recent 
of all deposits. Ice might certainly be conceived as having something 
to do with Geology ; " but no one then saw any importance, or great 
Cosmical relations, in the subject that since has engaged so many 
minds, and been shown to play so important a part in the terrestrial 
machine, and which, having jjassed into popular hands, is now being 
'■ nm away with " by some Geologists, who attribute to its past or 
present agency many gigantic tasks that, tested by only a little exact 
science, would prove to be impossible. No doubt something of a like 
fate is in store for Seismology. Those — the few — who will master 
the preliminary science absolutely necessary to understand and make 
use of it, will find in it the key to some of the greatest, and hitherto 
amongst the most obscure, problems of Physical Geology. Those who 
will be content with scraps of knowledge, or with being told results, like 
children, will be amused ; and, in proportion as they know more, will they 
be better amused, with Earthquake stories. But though they will then 
to some extent comprehend, they can never make for themselves real 
advances into the unknown. On the contrary (as with many Glacialists 
in relation to Geology), they may oftener, if they make the attempt, 
" darken counsel by words without knowledge ; " for the half knowledge 
of ingenious men is always " the Philosophy of the unconditioned." 
But although this is peculiarly the popular career of such parts of 
science as seize upon the imagination by the grandeiu- of the phenomena 
they discuss, and admit of a smattering of their reasonings being attained 
without great mental effort, — still it is well, here as everywhere, that 
those who actually scaled the rugged precipice of science, when they 
have reached a firm foothold upon a new or higher ledge, should turn 
round and announce to those that labour in the plain, the wider and 
nobler horizon of natiu'e they have commanded. 

It is good, therefore, that Science (worthily so called) should, as 
far as possible, utter her voice intelligibly to all. Let us humbly try 
to do this in part for the new-born Science of Seismology ; but we 
must begin at the beginning, albeit we may not in this pajier reach 
the end. And first, let us understand what we are speaking about. 
What is an Earthquake ? Our readers are confident that they can answer 
that inquiry. There are some who bave read, many who have talked 
of them, and some even who have felt their effects. But what are 
these effects ? and the cause — what is it ? Let us mention one or two 
things which an Earthquake is not. It is never " one of the means by 

1864.] Mallet on EarthqiiaJces. 67 

wliich permanent geologic elevations of the land are produced," though 
too often confounded with these in all sorts of geological " systems," 
and ex cathedra utterances. Nor is it " the reaction of the interior of 
a planet ui)on its exterior," for that, oracular as it sounded from the 
li|)8 of a Humholdt, is, in fact, to say nothing. 

What, then, is an Earthquake ? It is the transit of a wave or waves 
of elastic compression in any direction, from vertically upwards to horizon- 
tally in any azimuth, through the substance and surface of the Earth, 
from any centre of impidse, or from more than one ; and which may be 
attended loith sound and tidal waves, dependent upon the impidse, and 
upon circumstances of position as to sea and land. 

To understand the definition we must have a clear notion of what 
a wave is. We will return to that true threshold of Seismology, but 
first let us take a very brief glance at the history of our subject. This 
is twofold : that of the facts, or reputed facts, as feimd in innumerable 
Earthquake narratives, and that of hmnan opinion, from the dawn of 
knowledge downwards, as to these, in referring them to causes. 

The supposed first cradle of oui* race, or at least of that great 
branch of it from which we ourselves, and almost all our knowledge, 
have come, was situated in regions that during all history, as now, have 
been greatly distiu-bed by Earthquakes, which thus very early engaged 
the minds of the more observant of men. Nothmg, not even thunder 
and lightning, amongst natui-al phenomena can have so imj^ressed the 
imagination of early peoj^les, as did these suddenly felt shakings, by a 
terrible and unknown power inhabiting the unseen depths of the 
Earth, nor more imperatively stimulated to the discovery of some 
cause for them. 

The genius of the old nations of the East, that always " sought 
after a sign," or for a final cause, was and is satisfied with a myth. 
When Brahma turned sides, there was an Earthquake, or when the 
Tortoise, on which the world rests, stirred his flipj^ers, there was 
the like result ; and this sort travelled westwards, moiilding the earlier 
than Homeric Mythology of the days when Greece was young, and 
showing itself in the mysterious power of the Trident of Neptime, 
^sKTiyJio'vog syvoa-'tyaiog. But the Greeks "desired wisdom," and only 
missed it as to deciphering natm'e, because they started from arche- 
type creations of the mind, and not from inductive observation. 

There was plenty of such philosophizing on Earthquakes amongst 
them. There were three theories before the days of Aristotle : that 
of Anaximenes, the Milesian ; of Anaxagoras of Klasomene ; and of 
Demociitus of Abdera, in order of time. Aristotle himself wi'ote 
largely and learnedly in the books itsci Msrscv^oKoyiKcuv, and tts^i KotTjaou. 
He had remarked and classified, with his accustomed comprehensive- 
ness, the different sorts of shocks by their sensible effects, dividing all 
into, iTTixXiyrai, which strike the earth's surface at an acute angle ; fi^d- 
crrai, those that come right up (vertically), and sink down again, like 
a boiling spring or pot ; ^acraar/aj, those that leave hollows after their 
departui'e ; f.iixra.i, those W'hich break forth with eruption of wdnd, 
stones, mud, &c. Those which with one gi-eat push overturn everything 
are ujo-rag, and those, that with much shaking to and fro, and up and 

58 Original Articles. [Jan. 

down, replace the objects they have displaced, and are of the nature 
of tremors, are Tta.Xi^.ariai, 

The first, the second, and the two last, are clear, and almost exactly 
expressive of the sensible differences of Earthquake shocks ; but in 
the two between, Aristotle either classes Volcanic Eruptions with 
Earthquakes as all parts of one common train of events — or con- 
founds the shock with its consequences, i. e. the Earthquake with 
its secondary effects. Beyond the proof which this classification 
affords, that nearly two thousand five hundred years ago, Earthquakes 
were much the same as they are now, no man can learn anything 
from the disquisitions of Aristotle. 

Partly from the Greek being in these passages in many places 
corrupt, but far more from the fact that the Greeks had no distinct 
notions as to those forces of matter we call "molecular," nor yet 
any clear metaphysics, an abuse of words is found in their Physical 
writings which often renders them almost unintelligible : irvsvua is in 
some sort the cause of all earthquakes, says Aristotle ; but whether 
by the word, he meant simply the winds, or some intangible imponder- 
able force or agent present in the earth and above it, acting upon 
the winds, and acted on by them, though not the winds themselves, 
and giving rise to Earthquakes and Volcanoes, it is impossible to 
determine. The word Trvsti/xa was used to express pure spirit, and 
the wind, as well as condensable vapours, indifferently and alike, by 
the vulgar, and by the philosopher. Thus in John's Gospel, cap. iii. 
V. 8, this word occurs twice in the same verse, and is translated wind 
first, and spirit afterwards in our version. 

The views of the great and philosophic Seneca are far more 
distinct and important. What Humboldt wrote, was true at the time, 
and the ' Questiones Naturales ' contain the germ of almost everything 
that has been advanced in modern times as to Volcanic action in its 
larger sense. 

But we must hm-ry away from classic days, leaving Pliny without 
notice, and pass on and over the centuries of the so-called dark ages, 
and of the revival of knowledge, remarking only that in the fifteenth, 
sixteenth, and seventeenth centiuies, innumerable pamphlets and 
books were published, most of them recording with a grand gohe- 
mouclie credulity, all sorts of signs and wonders, and straightway 
founding a theory thereon. In the seventeenth century, these usually 
" improved the occasion " by pointing out that the particular Earth- 
quake was a special judgment on some unfriendly nation or obnoxious 
creed. The crudest and wildest hyjiotheses were set forth, and more 
or less accepted to accoxmt for the production of the shock. Thus it 
was due to solutio continui in the parts of the earth, to a sudden penning 
in of the subterraneous fires, to sulphureous and bituminous blasts, or, 
as Dr. Stukely was of opinion, to the play of lightning and thimder 
underground in manner like to that wherein they appear in our firma- 
ment. In nearly all these, Earthquakes and Eruptions are impartially 
jumbled. It is only within a very short time, that a few men in 
Europe have come to see, that while Vulcanicity is a word that may 
properly express the community as to causation that exists between 

1864.] Mallet on Earthquakes. 69 

Earthquakes and Volcanoes, yet that these must be treated and inves- 
tigated up to a certain point as distinct, and that Seismology shall 
express the system of doctrines of the former, and Vulcanology that 
of tlie latter. 

There are a few bright points of observant thought to be found 
amidst all this " old world " muddle, however. 

Fromondi, who wrote, in 1525, six books on Meteorology, and 
devotes the fourth to Earthquakes, refers to the explosion of the great 
Fire Ship, by which the beleagm'ed Autwerpers blew up the Duke of 
Parma's bridge over the Scheldt, of which Mottley has given so spirit- 
stirring an accomit in his ' History of the Eevolt of the Netherlands.' 
Fromondi remarks, that the blow of its explosion was fcdt almost all 
over Holland ; and he seizes upon the analogy between the effects and 
those of Earthquakes ; but he soon loses the train of thought that had 
thus so well broken cover. 

Maggio, of Bologna, in 1571, was the first who made any attempt 
to collect and classify into eleven, the signs or presages of Earth- 
quakes, not with much light, it miist be confessed, as he put Eclipses 
and Comets amongst " the eleven." 

Then, just about a century later, came Travagini, to whom belongs 
the credit of the first attempt to found a Physical Theory of Earth- 
quake movements, and whose disquisitions present a notable example 
of how a man may go coasting along very near to a great truth, and 
yet never touch it. 

He had experienced a horrible Earthquake in 1667 at Eagusa — 
seismically a very ugly region, being that where the great seismic band 
which stretching away westward from Varna and Constantinople along 
the Balkan, crosses the Adriatic,* and joins on to the great Italian 
band at Gargano and Melfi, and a place still subject to frequent and 
violent disturbance. 

That the shock was due to some kind of impulse or blow, and that 
the force was in some sort dispersive, is all of truth that can be said to 
have been seen clearly by Travagini, though he was close to a great 
deal more. 

Hooke, in 1690, delivered his ' Discourses of Earthquakes,' before 
the Eoyal Society. These Lectures, though called so, are, in fact, 
a diffuse sort of system of Physical Geology, and full of suggestive 
thoughts ; but Hooke throughout loses sight of what an Earthquake 
really is, and confounds all descriptions and soui'ces and degrees 
of elevatory forces and their effects, with the transient action and 
secondary effects of Earthquakes properly defined. These Lectures 
have been the mine from wliich nmnberless later Geological authors 
have more or less consciously drawn, and while they are a repertory 
of curious and often valuable thought and information, they have 
done great mischief in being one of the main causes of the same con- 
fusion of ideas between the effects of Land Elevation, and those of 
Earthquake, which is not even yet cleared out of Geological systematic 

In 1760, the Eev. John Mitchell, Fellow of Queen's, Cambridge, 
* See Map D, ' Report to Royal Society on Neapolitan Earthquakes of 1857.' 

60 Original Articles. [Jan. 

produced a most remarkable paper on Earthquakes to the Royal 
Society, printed in the ' Philosophical Transactions,' vol. li. — atten- 
tion being then powerfully directed to the subject by the recent 
terrible shock that had destroyed Lisbon. 

He shows a wonderfully clear conception, for his time, of the general 
configuration and structure of the superficial parts (or crust as it is 
the fashion to call it) of the Earth, and of the relations between Vol- 
canoes and Earthquakes. Both, he supposes, are due to vaj)our of 
high tension almost instantly generated by contact of water with in- 
candescent rock, deep in the earth. Misled, however, by his concep- 
tion of the universality of horizontally disposed strata, and of a 
nucleus of liquid lava universally beneath them, he goes at last hope- 
lessly wrong, by supposing that Earthquake-shock consists in a liquid 
wave of translation produced in the lava sea beneath, which forces, as 
it travels, the flexible covering of stratified material overhead to undu- 
late along with it, just as " a large carpet spread uj)on a floor, if it be 
raised at one edge, and suddenly brought down again — the air imder 
it by this means propelled, will pass along until it escapes at the oppo- 
site side, raising the cloth in a wave all the way it goes." This paper 
though vitiated throughout by this leading fallacy as to the nature of 
the Earthquake wave, was a most meritorious performance, and had 
important eflfects (though little specifically noticed), in moulding the 
thoughts of the earlier schools of Geology. 

Bertrand, Bouguer, Ulloa, Dolomieu, Grimaldi, Hamilton, and the 
Neapolitan Eoyal Commissioners, accumulated a mass of facts (and, 
let us add, of fictions) of Earthquakes, in the last and beginning of 
this century. 

Humboldt added to the facts in his Personal Narrative, &c. ; but 
nowhere, not even in ' Cosmos,' does he show that he had any clear 
notion of what is the nature of Earthquake motion — or how produced. 
In 1835, the Comte Bylandt de Palstercamp, in an extremely curious 
though wild and imaginative work, "La Theorie des Volcans," 
attempts to build up a sort of Cosmogony from considerations of the 
relations and reactions on om* planet, of light, heat, electricity, &c., 
&c. — from these come Volcanoes, and from the latter Earthquakes. 
Truth and quasi-truth are wildly and incoherently mixed in his book. 
Shocks or blows produced by and transmitted through cavities, lifted 
up and down by sudden filling or emptying of aeriform fluids, form 
Bylandt's shock, — and starting from the following extraordinary pro- 
positions, " les effets des tremblements de terre sent toujom-s contra- 
dictoires aux causes qui les produisent et diriges dans le sens inverse," 
— " I'efiet sera celui d'un pendule, c'est-a-dire contradictore entre les 
deux extremites," he arrives at the true conclusion, that bodies over- 
thrown at opposite sides of a seismic focus will all fall toivards it, but 
in opposite directions to the shock and to each other. We now know 
that this is only true if the bodies fall in the first semiphase of the 
wave. Had Bylandt followed this out, and curbed his tendency to 
mysticism, he would in all probability have been the creator of Seis- 
mology, — the true discoverer of Earthquake dynamics — as it was, he 
missed the prize. 

1864.] Mallet on Earthquahes. 61 

Between 1820 and 1841, Von Huff, Krics, Huffmann, and one or 
two otliers, bad laboriously colleetod and digested into order a large 
mass of faets, or reputed facts, of earthquakes, and to the first belongs 
the credit of having, in a masterly discussion,* shown what are the 
relations (so far as then knowii) between Meteorological and Earth- 
quake Phenomena— and pointed out, that all the supp(jsed meteoro- 
logical presages were devoid of reality, and that Earthquakes belong 
to Physics and Geology and not to Meteorology. 

But none of these men made the slightest advance towards a 
physical theory of Earthquake motions. The only true hint even, 
that was to be found before 1846, as to the true natui'e of the Earth- 
quake motion, is found in a paper on Volcanoes, by Gay Lussac, in 
the ' Ann. de Chim.,' vol. xxii. p. 429, who quotes from Dr. Young's 
Lectures, and concurs in liis opinion, that " Earthquakes were of the 
natm-e of vibrations in solids." Even Darwin — who of all men had had 
the finest opportunity of seeing the effects of Earthquake on the most 
extensive scale in South America — rendered no better accoimt of the 
then accepted Vorticose displacement of objects, than by asking, " Might 
it not be caused by a tendency in each stone to arrange itself in some 
particular position with respect to the lines of vibration, in a manner 
somewhat similar to pins on a sheet of paper when shaken ? " 

He, too, like Parish, had recorded the circumstances of the great 
sea- waves that roll in, after South American and other Earthquakes, but 
neither rendered any solution of the facts. Nor was an attempt made 
by anyone, as yet, to connect these sea-waves and the soimds heard in 
great Earthquakes with the other parts of the phemomena. 

A considerable advance had been made in a branch of science 
apparently remote enough from Earthquakes, which, however, greatly 
prepared the way for solving one part of their true history. The 
brothers Weber, in Germany, and Scott Eussell after them, in England, 
had experimentally developed the science of certain classes of liquid 
waves; and the latter had, in 1844, showTi the laws of propagation 
of one class of these, viz. waves of translation. 

In February, 1846, a paper was read to the Eoyal Irish Academy, 
and. then pubnshed in its Transactions, vol. xxi. part 1, ''On the 
Dynamics of Earthquakes," which (we quote the words of the Presi- 
dent, Dr. Chas. Graves, on presenting the Cunningham medal) fixed 
upon an immutable basis the real natm-e of Earthquake phenomena, 
and, for the first time, showed that the three great classes of phenomena 
— 1, Shocks ; 2, Sounds ; 3, Great Sea Waves — were all reducible to 
a common origin, and formed parts of a connected train, and were 
explicable upon admitted laws. This paper also, for the first time, 
explained the true nature of the movements that had been called 
"vorticose," and viewed as proofs of cii'cular movements, by showing 
that they were the result of rectilinear motions. 

It also pointed out the important uses that might be made of Earth- 
quakes, as instrmnents of cosmical research, enabling us not only to 
discover the dejith beneath the sm-face of the origin of these shocks, 
and hence of volcanic foci, but ultimately of ascertaining the natm-e, 
* Geschichte cler uatiirlicheu Verilnderungen der Erdoberflache. 

62 Original Articles. [Jan. 

as well as the temperature, of tlie formations within our eartb, to a depth 
far more profound than can be reached by any other mode of investi- 
gation, or directly ever reached at all, and that by its means, we may 
acquire some knowledge of the formations constituting the beds, or 
situated even far beneath the beds, of the great oceans. These are, in 
fact, the great aims of Seismology, for the investigation of Earthquakes 
is only a means to an end. 

This paper drew the attention of physicists and geologists, in a 
prominent manner, to the subject of Earthquakes, and was followed 
by several reports drawn up by desire of the British Association, and 
published in its volumes ; and also by the laborious task completed 
in 1858, of drawing up and discussing the ' British Association Earth- 
quake Catalogue.' For this large body of seismic statistics, embracing 
all historic time and the whole earth's surface, and numbering more 
than 6,000 Earthquakes, the groundwork had been laid by the immense 
and valued labours in the same direction of Von Hoif, and of M. Perrey 
of the Faculty of Sciences of Dijon, whose life has been devoted to 
this branch of the subject, and whose labours are still continued with 
the enthusiasm and success of his early youth. 

Since 1846, the experimental method has been brought to bear 
upon the subject ; and the observations made on natural shocks have 
been compared with those of Earthquakes artificially j)roduced. And 
now Seismology has taken an acknowledged place as an imi)ortant and 
productive branch of Cosmical Physics, and already some able men in 
diiferent quarters of Europe are pursuing its study. Amongst those 
who have most, and most recently, advanced our knowledge, are 
Haughton, Favre, Schmidt Jeittelles, Otto Wolger, and Kluge. But 
we have now brought the history of discovery in Seismology to such a 
point, that its further development will best merge into the remarks to 
follow, upon the doctrines and facts of the Science itself. 

Eecm-ring now to the definition already given of an Earthquake, 
we will clear our ideas as to what it means. The shock is produced 
by a wave of elastic compression passing through some portion of the 
substance of our earth. Elasticity is that property in matter which 
tends to the restoration of figure in solids, and of volume in liquids 
and gases, when altered by an extraneous force ; and every different 
substance has its own co- efficient (or measure) of elasticity of volume 
(cubic elasticity), and of elasticity of form (linear elasticity). 

In common parlance, it is often confounded with flexibility. Thus, 
when people praise the springs of an easy-going carriage by saying, 
" they are so elastic," they mean they are so flexible. Elasticity and 
flexibility are, in fact, opposites in some resi^ects. A perfectly elastic 
solid is one that, after forcible alteration of figure completely restores 
itself ; if perfectly flexible, it would not restore itself at all, and 
might be bent to any extent without disruption. No such bodies 
exist in natm-e. All terrestrial materials present variable combi- 
nations of elasticity and flexibility, neither being perfect. Thus, 
Glass, Ivory, Agate, and Hard Steel are highly elastic bodies, but very 
slightly flexible. They break, as we all Icnow, if but slightly bent, or 

18G4.] Mallkt on Earthqualces. 63 

when struck sharply a blow which bends them suddenly, but they 
almost perfectly resume their forms after being released from an inflect- 
ing force. 

On the other hand, India-rubber, Animal Jelly, and Whalebone, 
possess a wide range, both of flexibility and of elasticity. They recover 
their forms after great distortion, but not so perfectly as more rigid 
bodies. The elastic limit — that is, the extent to which their particles 
may be relatively displaced without fracture or other permanent alter- 
ation, is much greater in these latter, than in the former class of 

But we find also bodies which, like dough, or temperered potter's 
clay, are extremely flexible, and exhibit hardly any tendency to resume 
their forms when these have been forcibly altered. 

All these are solids, i. e. more or less rigid bodies, but liquids and 
gases are also elastic ; liquids do but very slightly — gases not at all — 
resist change of figui-e, but they powerfully resist change of volume ; 
and when this is altered by compression, it is restored by elasticity. 
Thus a cannon-shot that strikes the surface of the sea rises and rico- 
chets in virtue of its own elasticity and that of the water, from which 
it rebounds much farther than from a bed of solid clay or of sand ; 
but the range of the elasticity in volume, of liquids, is extremely small 
— so little, that if the weight of our atmosphere pressing upon the 
ocean were doubled, it would only squeeze about every million and 
forty-five cubic yards of water into a million. Gases, on the contrary, 
as we all know, are largely compressible, and perfectly restore them- 
selves to their original volume ; of this the aii"-gun afibrds an instance 
familiar to everyone. 

Solid bodies may be deformed hy flexure, as when a carriage-spring 
is bent ; by extension, as when we pull a cord or wire endwise ; or by 
compression, as when a load is laid on the summit of a column ; or any 
combination of these may occur- by the application of partial forces to 
their forms. But fm-ther, solids may be either homogeneous or 
heterogeneous, made up of different particles, or of particles having 
diflerent elasticities in different directions. Thus, certain crystals 
have different elastic co-efficients in three different axes ; and 
pseudo-crystalline bodies, such as the laminated slate of North 
Wales, or closely stratified rocks, have very different degi'ees of 
elasticity parallel to and transverse to the lamina, or to the strata, 

It is in virtue of this restorative force of elasticity, that when- 
ever a blow or pressure of any sort is suddenly appKed, or a previously 
applied, steady or slowly variable force, is suddenly increased upon 
or relaxed from, any material substance, then a pulse or wave of 
force, originated by such an impulse, is transmitted through the ma- 
terial acted on, in all directions from the origin or centre of impulse, 
or in such directions as the limits of the material permit. The 
transfer through the material, or the transit of such an elastic wave, 
is merely the continuous forward movement of the original change in 
the relative positions of the particles of part of the elastic mass pro- 
duced by the extraneous force or blow — a relative disnlacement and 

64 Original Articles. [Jan.. 

replacement of tliose particles within a determinate volume of the 
material, transferred through and affecting in succession, the whole 

The shaking of the ground by the rolling of carriages, beating 
their wheels upon the paving-stones in the streets of cities, and the still 
more perceptible rocking of the ground beneath our feet as we stand 
near a heavy railway train at speed, are examples of such waves 
in solids. 

The ordinary sounds we hear, are examples of like waves in air ; 
and the noise of the grating and rolling pebbles moved by the waves 
as they approach the shore on which we stand, is an instance of such 
waves, transmitted from the mutually struck pebbles to the water, and 
through the water to the air, by which it reaches our hearing organs. 
While the shock or jar felt in a boat floating at some distance from a 
blast exploded at the bottom of the sea, is a case of such an elastic 
wave, originated by the blow of the powder, and transmitted directly 
to and through the water and the boat, to our bodies. 

Now the velocity with which such a wave-form travels, varies in 
different materials, and if these be homogeneous, depends for any given 
substance, principally upon its sj)ecific degree of elasticity — technically 
called its elastic modulus, and upon its density, upon which its mass 
and inertia are dependent in a given volume. The rate at which the 
wave-form, i.e. the whole group of disjilacing and replacing particles 
in simultaneous movement, is transmitted in any particular substance, 
is called its transit period. 

This period is constant (always the same) for the same material, 
under the same conditions as to temperature, molecular state, &c., 
and for small originating impulses is irrespective of the amount or 
kind of the original impulse which produced the wave. Experiments 
conducted within a few years past at Holyhead, as to the time that 
the wave or shock, transmitted through the Quartz and Slate Rocks 
there, to traverse a measured mile of rock, from the moment of 
production by certain of the explosions of the great mines, employed 
in the adjacent Government Quarries, which vary from less than a ton 
up to six or seven tons of powder fired at once, appear to indicate that 
in elastic waves of this great magnitude and transmitted through hete- 
rogeneous material, i. e. laminated, contorted, and shattered rocks of 
various degrees of hardness, density, and elasticity ; the transit period 
is not independent of the amount of the original impulse, but that the 
larger this is — and the greater consequently the original magnitude of 
the wave — the less (in some ratio) is the time of the transit period ; 
in other words, the faster the wave travels. 

In air, the transfer of this elastic wave, which is identical with 
that of sound, has a velocity of about 1,140 feet per second. In water, 
the transit period is about 4,700 feet per second ; and in hard crys- 
tallized rocks, such as porphyry or granite, if they were perfectly 
solid and homogeneous, it would be from 5,000 to 10,000, while in iron 
and steel it reaches 11,000 or 12,000 feet per second. An enormous 
retardation of this transit velocity occurs however when the material 
through which the wave passes is heterogeneous, broken up and 

1864.] Mallet on Eartltquahcs. 65 

shattered. When first it was pointed out that an Earthquake shock 
was an elastic wave, it appeared, ujion physical grounds, that tho 
rate at which the shock having rcsachod one place on the earth's sur- 
face, wouhl pass on to another heyond, must be something nearly 
as great as that theoretically due to the elasticity and density of 
the rocks beneath, that is to say, often as much as 8,000 or 10,000 
feet per second. This was submitted to exj)erimcnt ; granite rock, 
highly elastic and dense, ought to transmit a shock wave nearly as 
fast as any rocky or other material forming part of our globe, and wet 
sand ought to transmit it almost at the extreme limit of slowness. 

More than a mile of wet uniform sand was measured carefully upon 
the shore of Killiney Bay, in Ireland, and several hundred feet in the 
granite of Dalkey Island adjacent. At one end of each of these 
ranges, respectively, small Earthquakes were made by exploding 
galvanically, casks of gunpowder buried in the sand, and blasts stmk 
in large cylindrical holes sprung in the granite, special means 
being devised for determining the time of transit, and accm'ata 
enough to measure time to less than the five-thousandth of a second ; 
the time-measuring apparatus being set in motion, and stopped by 
the same galvanic apparatus that fired the powder a mile or more 
away. An instrimient, called a Seismoscope, was also devised and 
employed, by which the arrival of the Avave of impulse transmitted 
from the powder exploded at the remote end, should be rendered 
visible to the eye, thi'ough the disturbance of a telescopic image, 
reflected in the liquid mirror of a small trough full of quicksilver, 
which was caused to imdidate and flicker by the momentary tremor 
of the ground beneath it. The sensibility of this instrument w^as 
so great that a horse trotting on the sand half-a-mile away was visibly 
seen to shake the groimd, and a stamp of the foot or tap of a hammer 
on a large stone several hundred feet away, produced visible dis- 
turbance. This instrument was also employed at Holyhead. 

The results of these experiments caused some sm-prise amongst 
physical philosophers, for in place of the enormous rates of transit 
that were expected, it was ascertained that the mean rates of wave pro- 
pagation were only as follows in the respective media, viz. : 

In the most solid Granite .... 1664'574 feet per second. 

In shattered-like Granite .... 1306"425 „ „ 

In contorted and stratified Rock (Quartz and 

Slate, 10S8-559 

In wet sand 824-915 

The retardation is due to the discontinuity of the rocks, the mass of 
every known rock being broken up by joints and fissiu'es, at each of 
which there is a loss of vis viva, and a loss of time in the transmis- 
sion of the wave. The accuracy of these results, at first received 
with some just reserve, has since been amply confirmed by observations 
and calculations of the actual transit periods of Natural Earthquake 
waves, occm-ring in the Rhine Provinces, Hungary, and Southern Italy, 
which are found closely to co-ordinate with those of experiment. 

It was ascertained that in the contorted heterogeneous and shat- 
tered rocks of Holyhead, no less ih&,n seven-eighths oi the total theoretic 

VOL. I. F 

66 Original Articles. [Jan. 

velocity of transit due to the elasticity of the rocks, which was also 
experimentally obtained, was extinguished thus by their want of con- 
tinuity, &c. 

Now, from these different rates of wave transit in diverse materials, 
it results that if an impulse be given at a single point, it may be per- 
ceptible several times in succession by a person so situated as to re- 
ceive it through different media. 

Let, for example, one stand near a line of railway, and a heavy blow 
be delivered upon the iron rail ; it will be heard first, through the iron 
rail ; almost directly afterwards a second sound will be heard through 
the air ; and almost at the same time the person will feel the pulse of 
the blow reach his feet through the ground. While, if another person 
had his head immersed in the water filling a side drain along the line, 
he would have heard the sound through the liquid at a moment dif- 
ferent from the arrival of any of the other waves. 

Such waves, only on a larger scale, constitute an Earthquake shock. 
An originating impulse (something of the nature of a blow, or hav- 
ing the effects of one) there must be for every shock, bat we are not here 
concerned with the source from which that impulse may be produced. 
It may be an explosive production or condensation of high-pressure 
steam in heated cavities, deep beneath the surface, or sudden increase 
or decrease of its tension, or sudden fracture or fall, or forcing up or 
down or against each other of great rocky masses, or if (in near pro- 
pinquity to active volcanoes), it may be any of their throbs or throes, 
or explosive ejections, or the recoil from these ; it matters not as 
respects the physical theory of Earthquake-motion, and the expla- 
nation this renders of Earthquake-iihenomena, what or which or 
v/hether any of these be the cause of the blow, so long as some sort of 
impulse be given, and the seat of this be more or less deep beneath 
the earth. 

Then in all directions outwards from this centre of impulse, there 
will be transmitted an elastic wave. The form of the wave, if origi- 
nated at one point, would be that of a sj^herical shell concentric with 
the centre of impulse, if the medium were quite homogeneous ; but 
in nature, the wave assumes ellipsoidal and various other more com- 
plex forms, and rapidly gets broken up into smaller and still more 
complex waves, by disj)ersion, by interference, refraction and reflec- 
tion, in consequence of the shattered and varying nature of all the 
superiicial formations through which it is transmitted. 

The wave starts from the origin with one normal and two trans- 
versal vibrations, i. e. every particle vibrates not only to and fro, 
in the radial direction from the centre, but also at right angles to this, 
in two directions at once. The former is the larger vibration and the 
more important to attend to, so that we may often, in investigating 
Earthquake-phenomena, altogether pass over the transversals. These 
vibrations constitute the proper motion of the wave as contradistin- 
guished from its motion in transit. 

A plumb line passing from above the sm-face of the earth and 
through the centre of imjiulse is called TJie Seismic Vertical. Tlie 
v/ave or shock passing outwards from this centre, reaches the earth's 

1864.] Mallet on Earthquakes. 67 

surface vertically, and soonest in this Vertical, wliicli ia the shortest 
distance between any point below and the surface, and here it only 
produces (neglecting transversals) a rapid movement up and down. 
The surface of the gTouud actually rises and sinks again to its pre- 
vious place, with great rapidity, and through a range that may be 
several inches or perhaps feet, dependent on how great and how near 
the blow is given below, and what is the intervening material. 

For all points around the Seismic Vertical, the wave emerges at 
slopes, called emergent angles, which become more and more nearly 
horizontal as the distance on the surface is greater. The spherical 
or quasi-spherical shell wave-form at any given distance outwards 
when cut by the earth's surface, intersects it as a closed curve, more 
or less circular, elliptic, or oval, and the crest, so to say, of this surface- 
wave, called a coseismal line, because all bodies situated in it are 
shaken at the same instant, travels along the surface of the earth with 
a real, though not large, and with a constantly diminishing undulation, 
like a roller at sea, constantly enlarging the curvilinear area within it ; 
and as it passes outward, objects in succession are disturbed or 
overthi'own, not hy the transit of the urive-form, hut by the loave itself, 
that is, by the movement of the particles in motion in the wave. 

There is a certain distance outward upon the earth's surface, all 
round the Seismic Vertical, at which it may be proved that the over- 
throwing power of the shock is a maximum, greater than anywhere, 
within or without it — within, because there the direction of normal 
movement in the wave is more nearly vertical, and hence less calcu- 
ated to upset objects standing on the ground — and without, because 
the fm-ther the shock has travelled away from the Seismic vertical, 
the more its power (to speak loosely) has decayed. This is the 
Meizoseismal circle or curve. The angle made with the Seismic vertical 
by a line drawn from any point in this curve at the surface do\\'n to 
the centre of impulse, is for the same conditions constant. 

If the impulse or blow has been accompanied by rending or frac- 
tm"e, or the striking or grinding together of hard or rocky masses, or 
by the rush of vapours or gases, then the wave of shock will be accom- 
panied by loaves of sound. But these latter may or may not travel just 
at the same rate, or by quite the same wave-paths to the ear of a 
person upon the siu-face, as does that of the shock which he feels. 
Hence there may be Earthquake shocks, with or mthout sounds, and 
the shock may be perceived before any soimd is heard, or the sounds 
may precede and herald the shock, as the a^^'fld " hramidos" generally 
do the Earthquakes of Mexico. 

But to hearers remote from the Seismic vertical, the sounds, if any, 
■will reach their ears not only through the earth, but through a longer 
or shorter intervening range of air, and hence at very diifarent times 
and with very different amounts of repercussion and reverberation, 
although originating in one sound only, as of a single rend, or grind, 
or explosion. 

A remarkable use has been made, for the first time, of the differences 
in the character of the soimds heard nearly simultaneously, and at 
about equal distances all round the Seismic vertical, in the Eeport 


68 Original Ariides. [Jan. 

addressed to tlie Royal Society of the examination made on the facts 
of the Neapolitan Earthquake of 1857, by employing them to deter- 
mine approximately from their varying character the form of the focal 
surface or cavity, or of the subterranean locus of the centre^ of effort, 
— and the method will no doubt hereafter, when more largely and 
completely applied, yield very important results. Sjjace forbids us, 
however, here to do more than mention it, and refer to the Report in 

These, then, are the waves produced by a single impulse, and con- 
stituting an Earthquake whose origin is inland. But should the origin 
be under the sea, then at the point passed through by the Seismic ver- 
tical and around it, the sea-bottom is, as on land, suddenly upheaved, 
and again dropped down ; or it may be, as by submarine volcano, 
actually broken up altogether, and steam, lava, and floods of lapilii, 
and so forth, may be then belched forth under water. In either case 
there is forced up a volume of water upon the sea's surface just 
above, or several of these in succession, and as each mass falls again 
it assumes the horizontal form of a circular liquid wave of trans- 
lation — and these are proj)agated outwards over the surface of the sea, 
like the circles or ring-shaped waves on a pond, when a pebble is 
dropj)ed into it. The altitude and breadth of these waves depend 
mainly upon the magnitude of the disturbance of the bottom, and on 
the depth of water above it ; the rate of their proj^'-i-g^tion outwards 
has nothing to do directly with elasticity, it is dependent simply 
upon the square root of the depth of the water traversed by the wave 
on its surfiice. If the ocean continued everywhere of the same depth, 
and the original impulse came from a single point, or circular clisc, 
then the horizontal plan of the crest of any one of these waves would 
always remain a circle ; but the depth varies — and as that part of 
the expanded circle which is over a deeper part moves on much faster 
than portions moving over shallow water, or approaching shores — so 
the circles soon get distorted into various other closed curves, and the 
original radial direction of translation out;vards gets changed to any 
extent — so that a wave might, without any reflection, even double back 
upon its original line of j^rogress. 

When the long flat swell of such waves, as they are originated on 
the deep sea, ajiproachcs the shores and reaches shoal water, their 
fronts become steeper and steeper, and they finally roll in xipon the 
shore, as the great sea waves of South American and other Earthqxiakes, 
so much dreaded wherever they have been once experienced. They 
are often so large that they only topple over as brealcers after they 
have rolled in unbroken masses far inland. 

Such was the wave that swept, in one unexpected deluge, thousands 
of people off the Quay at Messina, and which in some South American 
Earthquakes have inundated devoted cities like Valparaiso and Callao, 
with a frowning crest 80 feet in height. Not that the wave while 
it was far out at sea possessed anything like this altitude, — but just as 
the Atlantic tide wave, ^ when constricted in the Bay of Fuudy, or 
in our own Bristol Channel reaches 70 or 40 feet ; so does the Earth- 
quake sea-wave rise and get steep in the narrow and shallow waters. 

1864.] Mallet on Earthquakes. 69 

Tims, \vc see tliat in an Earthquake whose origin is beneath the 
sea, there may be a series of waves, all arriving in the following order, 
differently, and at different times, to an observer standing on the land. 

1st. The great Earthquake wave of shoek. 

2nd. Th.G forced sea- wave (of whieh we have as yet not sj)oken); it is 
the roll of water forced up by, and carried along with, the earth-wave, 
Vi'hich raises the sea-bottom, and with it tlie water u2)on its back as it 
were, and at its own rate of motion, after it has got into shallow water. 
This is but occasionally perceptible, and only in great Earthquakes. 

3rd. The sound-wave through the earth, which may or may not bo 

4th. The sound-wave through the sea. 

5th. The sound-wave through the air. 

All these except the second are elastic waves. 

6th, and lastly. Tlie great sea-ivave, or wave of translation, rolls in 
and completes the catastrophe, often hoxu'S after the shock has done its 
work of destruction ; or portions of it may roll in upon shores that 
have felt no shock at all. Thus in the great Earthquake at Japan, 
which a few years ago wrecked a Russian frigate in one of the harbours 
there, the great sea-wave produced in the deep seas, near those great 
Islands, hours afterwards, reached the opposite shores of the Pacific, 
at St. Diego and Francisco, and gave the first intelligence at those 
places of the disaster that had occurred at the further side of that great 

Space forbids us now to pm'sue the subject fm-ther. At some 
future opportunity we may be enabled to revert to it ; and to develope 
the relations between the movements of the elastic -wave particle and 
the wave's transit to which we have in the preceding pages almost 
confined our remarks. It remains also to be sho^vn by what methods 
the position and depth, and even the form and magnitude of the 
deep-seated fociis of an Earthquake, may be ascertained by deciphering, 
with the help of science, the terrible hand^vl'iting left by the destroyer 
upon the country it has overthrown. To these should be added some 
description of the secondary effects of Earthquakes, in moulding anew 
the features of the lands they pass over, and how those affect and 
modify the shocks that reach them. Something, too, might be said as 
to the distribution of Earthquakes in time and in space upon our 
Earth's sm'face ; what are the conditions originating within our planet ; 
the impulses on which their existence depends ; and, lastly, what is the 
function of Earthquakes, and what uses they fulfil as parts of the great 
cosmical machine. 

70 Original Articles. [JaB. 


By J. H. Gladstone, Esq., Ph.D., F.E.S. 

Anyone who, on a tolerably clear night, has crossed the channel be- 
tween Folkestone and Boulogne, and remained on deck, must have 
noticed on the French coast what appeared a brilliant star, now 
waxing, now waning. It was the light of the far-famed Pharos, on 
Cape Grisnez. But if he has made the passage within the last 
eighteen months, his gaze will have been attracted by a still brighter 
star on the British coast, of a bluish tint, steady and brilliant. 
This is the Magneto-electric Light at Dungeness, the brightest spark 
in the world, and one which imites a rare scientific with a practical 
interest, and may prove only the fii'st lighted of a multitude of similar 
beacons. I propose to say a few words on the history, production, 
and merits of this Light, 

History, — If we ask the parentage of the Magneto-electric Light, 
Mr. Frederick Hales Holmes is certainly its father, but, like other 
beings, it has had two grandfathers — the philosopher who first showed 
the conducting power of charcoal, and the brilliancy of the light 
between charcoal terminals of an interruj)ted galvanic current ; and 
Professor Faraday, who discovered that when a piece of soft iron, 
surrounded by a coil of metallic wire, was made to j)ass by the poles 
of a magnet, an electric current was j)roduced in the wire, which 
revealed its existence by effecting chemical decompositions, or by 
giving a spark. This spark, it is true, was barely visible as at first 
obtained, but it has been exalted into the present Magneto-electric 

It appears that in 1853 some large Magneto-electric machines were 
erected in Paris for producing gas by the decomposition of water, 
the object of the proprietor being to use this gas for the purposes of 
combustion ; but the scheme failed, the Company that was being 
formed came to nothing, and the machines were pronounced by leading 
scientific men to be only expensive toys. Mr. Holmes, however, who 
was one of the referees, proposed to turn them to account for electro- 
plating and gilding, and thought it jjossible that the Electric Light 
might be produced advantageously by their means. " My proposi- 
tions," he says, in his evidence before the Eoyal Commission on Lights, 
Buoys, and Beacons, " were entirely ridiculed, and the consequence 
was, that instead of saying that I thought I could do it, I promised 
to do it by a certain day. On that day, with one of Duboscq's regu- 
lators or lamps, I produced the Magneto-electric Light for the first time, 
but as the machines were ill-constructed for the purpose, and as I had 
considerable difficulty to make even a temporary adjustment to produce 
a fitting current, the Light could only be exhibited for a few minutes at 
a time — say ten or twenty minutes — when the adjustments were entirely 
displaced by the friction ; the rubbing surfaces were worn away. From 
this time I directed my attention more particularly to the reconstruc- 

18G4.] Gladstone on Lighthouse Illumination. 71 

tion of the niacliines entirely, from tlie very frame-work upwards, so 
as to i)ro(luce the ciUTCiit that I saw ueccssary for the Electric Light." 
During tliis time, it ai)pears that Mr. Holmes, not liking the treatment 
he received from the French Company, left I'aris, and left his im2)er- 
fect machine there, and it was this very machine which was subse- 
quently used by the French Government in their experiments, and these 
experiments were carried on by a man who had worked under Mr. 
Holmes. The inventor next aj)pears in Belgium, continuing his 
improvements with a new machine, and visited by Admiral (then Cap- 
tain) Fitzroy, who was commissioned by the Admiralty to go to 
Brussels, see the Light, and report on it. In February, 1857, Professor 
Holmes applied to the Trinity Board, and in the following month the 
Electric Light was exhibited, for several nights, at the experimental lan- 
tern* at Blackwall, before the Light Committee and Professor Faraday. 
In May, an agTeement was made for a trial at the South Foreland ; but it 
was not till the 8th December that this experiment at an actual light- 
house was commenced. The Elder Brethren made arrangements for 
getting observations by the crews of j^ilot-cutters, masters of light- 
vessels, and the keepers of neighboui'ing lighthouses, both on the 
British and French coasts. Some unforeseen difficulties seem to have 
arisen, due partly, no doubt, to the novelty of the whole arrangement, 
but i)artly also to the complicated oj)tical apparatus in the Lighthouse 
being suited to a large flame instead of a brilliant point of light, and 
being ill-adjusted to throw that light to the horizon. All this caused 
some interrui)tions in the experiment. M. Eeynaud, the Director- 
General of the French Lighthouses, inspected the Light on Ajjril 26, 
1859 ; it was visited by most of the Members of the Royal Commission 
of Lights, Buoys, and Beacons, including myself, three days afterwards, 
and on the same day Professor Faraday WTote a Report to the Trinity 
House. The opinions expressed were so far favom'able, that the Elder 
Brethren desired a fm'ther trial of six months, dui'ing which time the 
Light was to be entirely under their own control, Mr. Holmes not 
being allowed to interfere in any way. The Light was again kindled 
on August 22, and the experiment hajipened soon to be exposed to a 
severe test, as one of the Light-]veei)ers, who had been accustomed to 
the arrangement of the lamps in the lantern, was suddenly removed, 
and another took his place mthout any previous instruction. This 
man thought the light quite strong enough if he allowed the carbon 
points to touch, as the lamp then required no attendance whatever, and 
he could leave it in that way for hours together. On being remon- 
strated with, he said, "It is quite good enough." Notwithstanding 
such difficulties as these, the experiment was considered satisfactory, 
but it was discontinued at the South Foreland, for the cliffs there are 
marked by a double light, and the electric spark was so much brighter 
than the oil flames in the other house, that there was no small danger 
of its being seen alone in thick weather, and thus fatally misleading 
some imfortunate vessel. 

Then occurred a period of two years, consumed partly in coming 

* The room with glass sides, from which the light is exhibited at the top of a 
lighthouse, is called a " lantern." 

72 Original Articles. [Jan. 

to the decision that the Magno-electric Light was to be exhibited at 
Dungeness, and partly in fitting up tlie lighthouse there (which by the 
way had been cracked by lightning) for the reception of its new 

It was not deemed desirable to trust the illumination of that head- 
laud entirely to the Electric Light, hence the old apparatus was 
retained, and the oil-lamp has always been kept ready for use in case 
of necessity. A supplementary lantern was therefore constructed on 
the top of the ordinary one, and in this the electric lamp was fixed, and 
surrounded by a small combination of lenses and prisms made 
expressly for it by Messrs. Chance, of Birmingham. In the meantime 
Mr, Holmes had considerably improved his lamj) by borrowing an 
idea fi'om an arrangement devised by a M. Serrin. At length, in 
February, 1862, this lamp was lit at Dungeness, but it was extin- 
guished on account of the necessity of instructing fresh lighthouse 
keepers, who had to take charge of the aj)paratus, and it was not till 
the 6th of June that the brilliant star shone permanently on our 
Southern coast. 

In the meantime, the French have not been indifferent or idle. 
When the Royal Commission visited Paris, the Lighthouse authorities 
were found experimenting with a comj)aratively small machine, and 
had clearly not overcome the difficulty of maintaining the charcoal 
points at a projier distance. But they persevered, and last July there 
was published in the ' Monitem* Universel' a Report by M. Reynaud 
to the Minister of Commerce and Public Works, in which he expressed 
a most favom-able opinion of the Electric Light, and the Minister gave 
an order for two Electro-magnetic machines to be placed in the double 
Lighthouse of the Cap de la Heve, near Havre. Thus France is 
following England in the adoption of this improvement in coast lights, 
just as, years ago, Great Britain followed France in the use of the 
Dioj)tric system of illumination. 

It is j)ossible that some other nations may not be behind the 
French. The Dutch Government contemplate placing an Electric 
Light at Scheveningen, and a second one at Texel. The Lighthouse 
system in the empire of Brazil is excellent, and they have long had 
an eye on the Electric Light. Sweden is on the alert ; and inqrdries 
also have been made respecting its management and cost by the Impe- 
rial Academy of Vienna. 

Apparatus. — Many readers will be familiar with the apparatus 
both of Mr. Holmes and of M. Berlioz, from having examined them at 
the International Exhibition last year. It would be very difficult to 
describe them without drawings, but the following may give a 
sufficiently good general idea. In the apparatus at Dungeness, the 
power that produces the light is resident in 120 permanent magnets, 
of about 501bs. eacli, ranged on the jseriphery of two large wheels. 
This power is called into action by a steam-engine, with Cornish 
boilers, of about three-horse power, which causes a series of 160 soft 
iron cores smTomided by coils of wire to rotate past the magnets. 
The small streams of Electricity thus generated ai-e collected together 

18G4.] Glai;ston^ on Lighthouse Illuminations. 73 

into one stream, and by a special piece of apparatus callecl a Com- 
mutator the alternate positive and negative currents arc all brought 
into one direction. The whole power is then conveyed by a tliick 
wire from the engine-house to the lighthouse tower, and up into the 
centre of the illuminating apjjaratus. There it passes between two 
charcoal points, producing thus a most brilliant and continuous spark. 
The "Lami>," or ''Eegulator," is so contrived that by means of a 
balance arrangement and a magnet, round which the wire coils, the 
charcoal j)oints arc kept always at a proper distance apart. 

At sunset the machine is started, making about 100 revolutions 
per minute ; and the attendant has only to draw two bolts in the lamp 
when the power thus sj^un in the engine-room bursts into light of 
full intensity. It now requires little or no thought for three hom-s 
and a half, when the charcoal points being consumed the lamp must 
be changed, and this is done without extinguishing the light, for it is 
the kindling of the second lamp that puts out the first. There are 
always several lamps ready at Dungeness in case of accident, and 
everything is kept in duplicate. 

The French machine is composed of 56 magnets distributed in 
7 vertical equidistant planes, uj^on the angles of an octagonal prism. 
The maximum of intensity is obtained when the machine tui-ns 350 
or 400 times per minute, and the direction of the cui-rent is then 
reversed nearly 6,000 times per minute. There is no Conunutator 
emj)loyed, and the alternate currents are not brought into one. 

Merits and Demerits. — In favour of the Electric Apparatus, it 
may be stated wthout any fear of contradiction that the light is vastly 
more intense than that produced from the most powerful oil-lamp, or 
any practicable number of argaud burners. In truth that now shining 
at Dmigeness is the most brilliant light in existence. The following 
statement will illustrate this. Professor Faraday says of it, when at the 
South Foreland, " Dm'ing the daytime I comi^ared the intensity of the 
light with that of the sun, that is, it was jilaced before and by the side 
of the sun, and both looked at thi'ough dark glasses ; its light was as 
bright as that of the sun, but the sun was not at its brightest." No 
other light in existence would have stood that test. Again, he 
describes an exj)eriment at Dungeness : — " Arrangements were made 
on shore, by which observations could be made at sea about five miles 
off on the relative light of the Electric lamp, and the metallic reflectors 
■with their argand oil lamps — [the light formerly used] — for either 

could be shown alone, or both together The combined eftect 

was a glorious light up to the five miles ; then, if the Electric light 
was extinguished, there was a great falling off in the effect ; though, 
after a few moments' rest to the eye, it was seen that the oil-lamps 
and reflectors were in their good and proper state. On the other 
hand, when the Electric light was restored, the glory rose to its fii-st 
high condition. Then, whilst both were in action, the reflectors were 
shaded, and the Electric light left alone ; but the naked e3e could 
see no sensible diminution ; nor when the reflectors were returned into 
effectual use, could it see any sensible addition to the whole light 

74 Original Articles. [Jan, 

power, thougli the telescope showed that the alteration in the lantern 
had taken place at the right time." M. Kejnand estimates the usual 
intensity of the light at from 180 to 190 standard Carcel burners. 

This superiority of brightness is of practical service only in thick 
weather, for if the air be clear an ordinary fii-st-class light under the 
old system answers every purpose of the mariner, and in fog no light 
is of any avail ; but it scarcely requires demonstration that in certain 
intermediate states of the atmosphere, the brighter light will penetrate 
the haze, rain, or snow to a distance at which the other is perfectly 
invisible. There is nothing in the nature of the rays emitted to 
prevent its doing so, for when submitted to spectral analysis, the 
Electric light is found to contain every ray that the oil-flame does, and 
others beside. The returns of neighbouring lighthouse keepers, and 
of the masters of two of the lightships at the Goodwin Sands, during 
the experiment at the South Foreland, show this to be actually the 
case, and similar testimony is borne by the masters of passing vessels, 
the commanders of the Channel Steam Packets, and the pilots who 
frequent the neighbouring seas. 

The peculiar bluish colour of the light as seen from a distance is 
another advantage, by distinguishing it from ships' lights, or lamps on 
shore ; and practically this is a great object. Of com'se, it may be 
made red or green, or any other tint, by coloured glasses. Indeed it 
is peculiarly adapted for such a pui-pose. As the light can be 
interrupted and immediately rekindled with full intensity at pleasure, 
this light offers facilities for signaling which no other does. Each 
lighthouse might be made to repeat its own number all night long, if 
that were thought desirable. Another advantage is well stated in the 
words of Professor Faraday : — " In cases where the light is from lamp 
flames fed by oil, no increase of light at or near the focus or foci of 
the apparatus is possible beyond a certain degree, because of the size 
of the flames ; but in the Electric lamp, any amount of the light may 
be accumulated at the focus, and sent abroad at, of course, an 
increased expense. In consequence of the evolution of the light in so 
limited a focal space, it may be directed seaward, diverging either 
more or less, or in a vertical or horizontal direction at pleasure, vsdth 
the utmost facility. The enormous shadow under the light, produced 
by the oil-flame bm-ner, which absorbs and renders useless the 
descending rays to a very large extent, does not occm' in the Mag- 
neto-electric lamp ; all the light proceeding in that direction is 
turned to account. The optical part of the arrangement, whether 
dioptric or reflecting, might be very small in comparison with those 
in use :" and, indeed, it is so at Dungeness. As there is always an 
extra steam-engine and machinery on the premises, and ready for 
work, the power, and the consequent light between the charcoal 
points, might at any time be doubled, if the state of the atmosphere 
seemed to require it. 

It has ali'eady been remarked that in fog no light, however power- 
ful, is of much avail, and public attention is now being directed to the 
necessity of improving our fog signals. It has been well observed in 
M. Keynaud's Keport, " During foggy weather the supplementary steam- 

1864.] Gladstone on Lighthouse Illuminations. 75 

engine might bo employed in playing sonorous instrmnents, "which would 
carry souud to a much greater distance than the bells to which we have 
recourse at prescct." 

Against the advantages attending tlie use of this Electric light must 
be set the greater complexity of the instrmncnt, and the consequent 
greater chance of derangement, or rather the necessity of providing 
lighthouse keepers of a superior order, and an engineer to inspect the 
machinery and keep it in repair. This demand for su2)crior workmen 
is a difficulty we generally have to encounter in perfecting our engines 
either of peace or war. 

The relative expense of the Magneto-electric light and the Fresnel 
lamp is a consideration that must not be overlooked, though it should 
not be allowed too much weight when we are dealing with the safety 
of valuable cargoes and priceless hmnan lives. The original outlay 
in machinery for the Electric light is very large, but there must be set 
against this a considerable diminution in the cost of the apj)aratus used 
for directing the rays where they are wanted. The working expense 
consists of the coals bm-nt, the charcoal points used up, and the wear 
of the machinery, all of which j)erhaps scarcely exceeds the cost of oil 
imder the old system. The magnets are said rather to increase in 
strength than to diminish by use. The salary of an engineer is a more 
serious item, but the expense may be greatly reduced by appointing 
one engineer to several lighthouses, if the electric system become com- 
mon. Mr. Holmes estimates the working expenses of the electric ap- 
paratus as compared with the oil lamp, at about 400 against 290. The 
French estimate is, " Abstracting the expenses of the first establish- 
ment, it will be found that while the expenses of the annual mainten- 
ance of a lighthouse of the first order fed with colza oil rise to 9,421 
francs 75 centimes, those of the same lighthouse illuminated by elec- 
tricity would be 12,240 francs." Again, " The annual expense will be 
increased 29 per cent, in lighthouses of the first order, but it will have 
the effect of rendering the luminous intensity at least fivefold greater." 

It has been objected that the light is too bright, dazzling the mariner 
and misleading him as to its distance, but experience will soon remove 
this som'ce of error, and it is hard to understand how the light can pro- 
duce any dazzling effect, unless exhibited at the head of a pier close 
alongside of which the mariner must steer his way. But for harbour 
lights it is not required. Its proper place is on the prominent points of 
the coast which are used as landfalls by vessels, and unless objections 
present themselves in the future which are as yet unknown, we may 
confidently anticipate that each of these headlands will in time be 
marked by its brilliant Electric light. 

76 Original Articles. [Jan. 


Part I. The Belations of Light and Heat to the Vital Forces of Plants. 

By William B. Carpenter, M.D., F.R.S., F.L.S., F.G.S. 

In every period of the liistory of Physiology, attempts have been 
made to identify all the forces acting in the Living body with those 
ojterating in the Inorganic universe. Because muscular force, when 
brought to bear on the bones, moves them according to the mechanical 
laws of lever-action, and because the propulsive power of the heart 
drives the blood through the vessels according to the rules of hydrau- 
lics, it has been imagined that the movements of living bodies may be 
explained on Physical principles ; — the most important consideration 
of all, namely, the source of that contractile power which the living 
muscle possesses, but which the dead muscle (though having the same 
chemical composition) is utterly incapable of exerting, being alto- 
gether left out of view. So, again, because the digestive process, 
whereby food is reduced to a fit state for absorj)tion, as well as the 
formation of various products of the decomposition that is continually 
taking place in the living body, may be imitated in the laboratory of 
the Chemist ; it has been su2)posed that the approj^riation of the 
nutriment to the production of the living organized tissues of which 
the several parts of the body are composed, is to be regarded as a 
chemical action, — as if any combination of albumen and gelatine, fat 
and starch, salt and bone-earth, could make a living Man without the 
constructive agency inherent in the germ from which his bodily fabric 
is evolved. 

Another class of reasoners have cut the knot which they could not 
untie, by attributing all the actions of living bodies for which physics 
and chemistry cannot account, to a hypothetical " Vital Principle " ; 
a shadowy agency that does everything in its own way, but refuses to 
be made the subject of scientific examination ; like the " od-force " or 
the " sj)iritual power " to which the lovers of the marvellous are so fond 
of attributing the mysterious movements of turning and tilting 

A more scientific spirit, however, prevails among the best 
Physiologists of the jjresent day ; who, whilst fully recognizing the 
fact that many of the phenomena of living bodies can be accounted for 
by the agencies whose operation they trace in the world aroimd, sepa- 
rate into a distinct category — that of vital actions — such as ajjjiear to 
difier altogether in kind from the j)henomena of Physics and Che- 
mistry ; and seek to determine, from the study of the conditions under 
which these present themselves, the laivs of their occm-rence. 

In the prosecution of this inquiry, the Physiologist will find it 
greatly to his advantage to adopt the method of philosophizing which 
distinguishes the Physical Science of the present from that of the past 

* To be concluded in our ucxt Number. 

18G4.J Carpenter on Correlation of Physical and Vital Forces. 77 

generation ; that, namely, which, whilst fully accepting the logical 
definition of the cause of any phenomenon, as " the antecedent, or 
the concmTcuce of antecedents on whicli it is invariably and luicon- 
ditionally consequent " (Mill), draws a distinction between the dyna- 
mical and the material conditions ; the former supplying the power 
which does the work, whilst the latter affords the instrumental means 
through which that power operates. Thus, if we insjiect a Cotton- 
factory in fidl action, we find it to contain a vast number of machines, 
many of them but repetitions of one another, but many, too, present- 
ing the most marked diversities in construction, in operation, and in 
resultant products. We see, for example, that one is sujjplied with 
the raw material, which it cleans and dresses ; that another i-eceives the 
cotton thus prepared, and " cards" it so as to lay its fibres in such an 
arrangement as may admit of its being spun ; that another series, 
taking up the product supi)lied by the carding machine, twists and 
draws it out into threads of various degrees of fineness ; and that this 
thread, carried into a foui'th set of machines, is woven into a fabric 
which may be either plain, or variously figured, according to the con- 
struction of the loom. In every one of these dissimilar ojicrations, 
the force which is immediately concerned in bringing about the residt, 
is one and the same ; and the variety of its products is dependent 
solely on the diversity of the material instruments through which it 
operates. Yet these arrangements, however skilfully devised, are 
utterly valueless without the force which brings them into play,* All 
the elaborate mechanism, the triumj)h of human ingenuity in devising, 
and of skill in constructing, is as j)owerless as a corpse, without the vis 
viva which alone can animate it. The giant stroke of the steam-engine, 
or the majestic revolution of the water-wheel, gives the required im- 
pulse ; and the vast apparatus which was the moment previously in a 
state of death-like inactivity, is aroused to all the energy of its 
wondrous life, — every part of its complex organization taking upon 
itself its peculiar mode of activity, and evolving its own sj)ecial product, 
in virtue of the share it receives of the one general force distributed 
through the entire aggregate of machinery. 

But if we carry back our investigation a stage further, and inquire 
into the origin of the force supj)lied by the steam-engine or the 
water-wheel, we soon meet with a new and most significant fact. At 
our fii'st stage, it is ti'ue, we find only the same mechanical force 
acting through a different kind of instrumentality ; the strokes of the 
piston of the steam-engine being dependent upon the elastic force of 
the vapour of water, whilst the revolution of the water-wheel is main- 
tained by tlie do\vnward impetus of water en masse. But to what 
antecedent dynamical agency can we trace tliese forces? That agency, 
in each case, is Heat ; a force altogether dissimilar in its ordinary 
manifestations to the force which produces sensible motion, yet capable 
of being in turn converted into it and generated by it. For it is 
from the Heat aj^plied beneath the boiler of the steam-engine, that the 
non-elastic liquid contained in it derives all that potency as elastic 

* In going through a manufacturing town, I liave often been struck with the 
announceraents of "Power to Let." 

78 Original Articles. [Jan. 

vapour, whicli enables it to overcome tlie vast meclianical resistance 
that is set in opposition to it. And, in like manner, it is the heat of 
the solar rays which pumps up terrestrial waters in the shape of vapour, 
and thus supplies to Man a perennial source of new power in their 
descent by the force of gravity to the level from which they have been 

The power of the steam-engine, indeed, is itself derived more 
remotely from those same rays ; for the Heat applied to its boilers 
is but the expression of the chemical change involved in com- 
bustion ; that combustion is sustained either by the wood which is 
the product of the vegetative activity of the present day, or by the 
coal which represents the vegetative life of a remote geological epoch ; 
and that vegetative activity, whether present or past, represents an 
equivalent amount of Solar Light and Heat, used up in the decomposition 
of the carbonic acid of the atmosphere by the instrumentality of the 
growing plant.f Thus in either case we come, directly or indirectly, 
to Solar Radiation as the mainspring of our mechanical power ; the vis 
viva of our whole microcosm. Modern physical inquiry ventures even 
one step furthei", and seeks the source of the Light and Heat of the Sun 
itself. Are these, as formerly supposed, the result of combustion ; or 
are they, as surmised by Mayer and Thomson, the expression of the 
motive j)Ower continually generated in the fall of aerolites towards 
the Sun, and as continually annihilated by their impact on its surface ? 
Leaving the discussion of this question to Physical Philosophers, I 
proceed now to my own proper subject. 

It is now about twenty years since Dr. Mayer first broadly 
aiinounced, in all its generality, the great principle now known as that 
of Conservation of Force ; as a necessary deduction from two axioms 
or essential truths — ex nihilo nil fit, and nil fit ad nikilum — the validity 
of which no true philosopher would ever have theoretically questioned, 
but of which he was (in my judgment) the first to appreciate the full 
practical bearing. Thanks to the labours of Faraday, Grove, Joule, 
Thomson, and Tyndall, to say nothing of those of Helmholtz and 
other distinguished Continental savans, the great doctrine ex- 
pressed by the term " Conservation of Force " is now amongst the 
best established generalizations of Physical Science ; and every 
thoughtful Physiologist must desire to see the same course of inquiry 
thoroughly pursued in regard to the phenomena of living bodies. 
This ground was first broken by Dr. Mayer in his remarkable treatise, 
' Die Organische Bewegung in ihrem Zusammenhange mit dem 
Stofi'wechsel ' (' On Organic Movement in its relation to Material 
Changes,' Heilbronn, 1845); in which he distinctly set forth the 
principle that the source of all changes in the living Organism, 
animal as well as vegetable, lies in the forces acting upon it from 
without ; whilst the changes in its own composition brought about by 

* See on this subject the recent admirable address of Sir William Armstrong, 
at the Meeting of the British Association at Newcastle. 

t This was discerned by the genius of George Stephenson, before the general 
doctrine of the Correlation of Foi-ces had been given to the world by Mayer or 

1864.] CARrENTEn on Correlation of Physical and Vital Forcee. 79 

these agencies he considers to be the immediate source of the forces 
which arc generated by it. In treating of these forces, liowever, lie 
dwells chioliy on the production of Motion, Heat, Light, and Electri- 
city by living bodies ; touching more slightly ujjon the i)henoinona of 
Growth and l)evelo2)mcnt, which constitute, in the eye of the Physio- 
logist, the distinct province of vitality. In a Memoir of my own 
" On the Mutual Relations of the Vital and Physical Forces," pub- 
lished in ' The Philosophical Transactions for 1850,'* I aimed to show 
that the general doctrine of the " Correlation of the Physical Forces," 
propounded by Mr. Grove, was equally apijlicable to those Vital forces, 
which must be assumed as the moving powers in the production of 
purely Physiological phenomena ; these foi-ces being generated in 
living bodies by the transformation of the Light, Heat, and Chemical 
Action supplied by the world around, and being given back to it 
again, either during their life or after its cessation, chiefly in Motion 
and Heat, but also to a less degree in Light and Electricity. This 
Memoir attracted but little attention at the time, being regarded, I 
believe, as too speculative ; but I have since had abundant evidence 
that the minds of thoughtful Physiologists as well as Physicists are 
moving in the same direction ; and as the progress of science since 
the publication of my former Memoir would lead me to present some 
parts of my scheme of doctrine in a different form,| I venture again 
to bring it before the public in the form of a sketch (I claim for it no 
other title) of the aspect in which the appKcation of the principle of 
the " Conservation of Force " to Physiology now presents itself to 
my mind. 

If, in the first place, we inquire what it is that essentially distin- 
guishes Vital from every land of Physical activity, we find this 
distinction most characteristically expressed in the fact that a germ, 
endowed with Life developes itself into an Organism of a type 
resembling that of its parent ; that this organism is the subject of 
'incessant changes, which all tend in the first place to the evolution of 
its typical form, and subsequently to its maintenance in that form, 
notwithstanding the antagonism of Chemical and Physical agencies 
which are continually tending to produce its disintegration ; but that 
as its term of existence is prolonged, its conservative power declines 
so as to become less and less able to resist these disintegi'ating forces, 
to which it finally succumbs, leaving the organism to be resolved by 
their agency into the components from which its materials were ori- 
ginally drawn. The history of a living organism, then, is one of 
incessant change ; and the conditions of this change are to be foimd 

* At this date the labours of Dr. Mayer were not known either to myself or 
(so far as I am aware) to anyone else in this country, save the late Dr. Baly, who, 
a few months after the puhlication of my Memoir, placed in my hands tlie pamphlet 
'Die Orgauische Bewegung;' to which I took tlie earliest opportimity in my 
power of drawing public attention in ' The British and Foreign Medico-Chirurgical 
Review' for July, 1851, p. 'I'^l. 

t I have especially profited by a memoir on ' The Correlation of Pliytical, 
Chemical, and Vital Force, and the Conservation of Force in Vital Phenomena,' 
by Prof Le Conte (of South Carolina College), in Silliman's 'American Journal' 
for Nov. 1859, reprinted in 'The I'hilosophical Magazine' for 1860. 


Original Articles. 


partly in tlie organism itself, and partly in tlie external agencies to 
which it is subjected. That condition which is inherent in the 
organism, being derived hereditarily from its progenitors, may be 
conveniently termed its germinal capacity : its parallel in the Inorganic 
world being that fundamental difference in properties which consti- 
tutes the distinction between one substance, whether elementary or 
compound, and another ; in virtue of which each " behaves " in its 
own characteristic manner when subjected to new conditions. 

Thus, although there may be nothing in the aspect or sensible 
properties of the germ of a Polype to distinguish it from that of a 
Man, we iind that each developes itself, if the requisite conditions be 
supplied, into its typical form, and no other ; if the developmental 
conditions required by either be not supplied, we do not find a different 
type evolved, but no evolution at all takes place.* 

Now the difference between a being of high and a being of low 
organization essentially consists in this ; — that in the latter the con- 
stituent parts of the fabric evolved by the process of growth from the 
original germ are similar to each other in structure and endowments ; 
whilst in the former they are progressively differentiated with the 
advance of development, so that the fabric comes at last to consist of 
a number of organs or instruments more or less dissimilar in structure, 
composition, and endowments. 
Thus in the lowest forms of Vege- 
able life, the primordial germ 
multiplies itself by duplicative 
subdivision (ft, h, c, d) into an 
apparently unlimited number of 
cells, each of them similar to every 
other, and capable of maintaining 
its existence independently of ' 
them. And in that lowest Ehi- 
zopod tyi^e of Animal life, the 
knowledge of which is among 
the most remarkable fruits of 
modern biological research, " the 
Physiologist has a case in which 
those vital operations which he 
is elsewhere accustomed to see carried on by an elaborate apparatus, 
are 25erformed without any special instruments whatever ; a little 
particle of apparently homogeneous jelly changing itself into a greater 
variety of forms than the fabled Proteus, laying hold of its food with- 

* It is quite true tliat among certain of the lower tribes both of Plants ami 
Animals — ^especially the Fungi and Entozoa — similar germs ma}^ develope them- 
selves into very dissimilar forms, according to tlie conditions under which tliey 
are evolved ; but such diversities are only of tlie same kind as those which 
manifest themselves among individuals in the higher Plants and Animals, and 
only show that iu the types in (Question there is a less close conformity to one 
pattern. Neither in these groups, nor in that group of Foraminifera in which 
I have been led to regard the range of variation as peculiarly great, does any 
tendency ever sliow itself to the assumption of the characters of any group 
fundamentally dissimilar. 

18G1.] Caupenteii on Correlation of Physical and Vital Forces. 81 

out members, swallowing it without a mouth, digesting it without a 
stomacli, appr()i)i'iiiting its nutritious material without absorbent vessels 
or a eirculating system, moving from plaee to plaec with<jut muscles, 
feeling (if it has any power to do so) without nerves, propagating itself 
without genital apparatus, and not only this, but in many instances 
forming shelly coverings of a symmetry and complexity not surpassed 
by those of any testaceous animals,"* whilst the mere seiwiration 
of a fragment of this jelly is sufficient to originate a new and indepen- 
dent organism, so that any number of these beings niiiy be j^roduced 
by the successive detachment of such particles from a single Rhizopod, 
each of them retaining (so far as wo have at present the means of 
knowing) the characteristic endowments of tho stock from which it 
was an oflsct. 

When, on the other hand, we watch the evolution of any of the higher 
types of Organization, whether Vegetable or Animal, we observe that 
although in the first instance the primordial cell multij^lies itself by 
duplicative subdivision into an aggregation of cells which are appa- 
rently but repetitions of itself and of each other, this homogeneous 
extension has in each case a definite limit, speedily giving j^lace to a 
structural differentiation which becomes more and more decided with 
the progress of development ; imtil, in that most heterogeneous of all 
types — the Hiunan Organism — no two parts ai'e precisely identical, 
except those which correspond to each other on the opj)osite sides of 
the body. With this structiu-al differentiation is associated a corres- 
ponding differentiation of function ; for whilst in the Life of the most 
highly develoj)ed and complex organism we witness no act which is not 
foreshadowed, however vaguely, in that of the lowest and simplest, yet 
we observe in it that same " division of labour " which constitutes the 
essential characteristic of the highest grade of Civilization. For in 
what may be termed the elementary form of Human Society, in which 
every individual relies upon himself alone for the sujiply of all his 
wants, no greater result can be obtained by the aggTegate action of the 
entire community than its mere maintenance ; but as each individual 
selects a special mode of activity for himself, and aims at imj^rovement 
in that speciality, he finds himself attaining a higher and yet higher 
degree of aptitude for it ; and this specialization tends to increase as 
opportunities arise for new modes of activity, imtil that complex fabric 
is evolved which constitutes the most developed form of the Social 
State, wherein every individual finds the work — mental or bodily — for 
which he is best fitted, and in which he may reach the highest attain- 
able perfection ; while the mutual dependence of the whole (which is 
the necessary result of this specialization of parts) is such that every 
individual works for the benefit of all his fellows, as well as for his 
own. As it is only in such a state of society that the gTcatest triumpLs 
of human ability become possible, so it is only in the most differen- 
tiated types of Organization that Vital Activity can present its highest 
manifestations. In tho one case as in the other does the residt 
depend upon a process of gradual development, in which, under tho 

* See tho Autlior's 'Introduction to tho Study of tho Foraniinifera,' publislied 
by the Kay Society, 1862 : Preface, p. vii. 

VOL. I. G 

82 Original Articles. [Jan. 

influence of agencies whose nature constitutes a proper object of 
scientific inquiry, that most general form in which the fabric — whether 
Corporeal or Social — originates, evolves itself into that most special in 
which its development culminates. 

But notwithstanding the wonderful diversity of structure and 
of endowments which we meet with in the study of any complex Orga- 
nism, we encounter a harmonious unity or co-ordination in its entire 
aggregate of actions, which is yet more wonderful. It is this harmony 
or co-ordination, whose tendency is to the conservation of the organism, 
that the state of Health or Normal Life essentially consists. And the 
more profound our investigation of its conditions, the more definite 
becomes the conclusion to which we are led by the study of them, — 
that it is fundamentally based on the common origin of all these diver- 
sified parts in the same germ, the vital endowments of which, equally 
diffused throughout the whole fabric in those lowest forms of organiza- 
tion in which every part is but a repetition of every other, are differen- 
tiated in the highest amongst a variety of organs, acquiring in virtue 
of this differentiation a much greater intensity. 

Thus, then, we may take that mode of Vital Activity which mani- 
fests itself in the evolution of the germ into the comj)lete organism 
repeating the type of its parent, and the subsequent maintenance of 
that organism in its integrity, — in the one case, as in the other, at the 
expense of materials derived from external sources, — as the most uni- 
versal and most fundamental characteristic of Life ; and we have now 
to consider the nature and source of the Force or Power by which that 
evolution is brought about. The prevalent opinion has until lately 
been, that this power is inherent in the germ ; which has been supposed 
to derive from its parent not merely its material substance, but a nisus 
formativuSjBildungstrieb, or germ-force, in virtue of which it builds itself 
up into the likeness of its parent, and maintains itself in that likeness 
until the force is exhausted, at the same time imparting a fraction of 
it to each of its progeny. In this mode of viewing the subject, all the 
organizing force required to build up an Oak or a Palm, an Elephant 
or a Whale, must be concentrated in a minute particle, only discernible 
by microscopic aid ; and the aggregate of all the germ-forces apper- 
taining to the descendants, however numerous, of a common parentage, 
must have existed in their original progenitors. Thus, in the case of 
the successive viviparous broods of Aphides, a germ-force capable of 
organizing a mass of living structure, which would amount (it has 
been calculated)* in the tenth brood to the bulk of 500 millions of 
stout men, must have been shut up in the single individual, weighing 
perhaps the 1-lOOOth of a grain, from which the first brood was evolved. 
And in like manner, the germ-force which has organized the bodies 
of all the individual men that have lived from Adam to the present 
day, must have been concentrated in the body of their common ancestor. 
A moi'e complete reductio ad absurdnm can scarcely be brought against 
any hypothesis ; and we may consider it proved that, in some way or 

* See Prof. Huxley on the "Agamic Roproduction of Aphis," in 'Linn. Trans.,' 
vol. xxii. p. 215. 

18G4.] Carpenter on Correlation of Physical and Vital Forces. 83 

other, frcsli organizing force is constantly being supplied /rom without 
during the whole period of the exercise of its activity. 

Wlieu we look carefully into the question, however, we find that 
what the germ really supplies is not the force, but the directive agency ; 
thus rather resembling the control exercised by the superintendent 
builder who is charged with the working out the design of the architect, 
than the bodily force of the workmen who labour under his guidance 
in the construction of the fabric. The actual constructive force, as 
we learn from an extensive survey of the phenomena of life, is supplied 
by Heat ; the influence of which upon the rate of growth and devclop- 
inent, both animal and vegetable, is so marked as to have universally 
attracted the attention of Physiologists : who, however, have for the 
most part only recognized in it a vital stimulus that calls forth the 
latent power of the germ, instead of looking upon it as itself fm-nishing 
the power that does the work. It has been from the narrow limitation 
of the area over which physiological research has been commonly 
prosecuted, that the intimacy of this relationship between Heat and 
the Organizing force has not sooner become apparent. Whilst the 
vital phenomena of Warm-blooded Animals, which possess within 
themselves the means of maintaining a constant temperature, were 
made the sole, or at any rate the chief, objects of study, it was not 
likely that the inquirer would recognize the full influence of external 
heat in accelerating, or of cold in retarding, their functional activity. 
It is only when the siu-vey is extended to Cold-blooded Animals, and 
to Plants, that the immediate and direct relation between Heat and Vital 
Activity, as manifested in the rate of growth and development, or of 
other changes peculiar to the living body, is unmistakably manifested. 
To some of those phenomena which aftbrd the best illustrations of the 
mode in which Heat acts upon the living organism, attention will now 
be directed. 

Commencing with the Vegetable kingdom, we find that the ope- 
ration of Heat as the " motive power," or dynamical agency, to which 
the phenomena of growth and development are to be referred, is pecu- 
liarly well seen in the process of Germination.^ The seed consists 
of an embryo which has ah-eady advanced to a certain stage of 
development, and of a store of nutriment laid up as the material for 
its fm'ther evolution ; and in the fact that this evolution is carried on 
at the expense of organic compounds already prej)ared by extrinsic 
agency, until (the store of these being exhausted) the young plant 
is sufficiently far advanced in its development to be able to elaborate 
them for itself, the condition of the germinating embryo resembles 
that of an Animal. Now the seed may remain (under favoiu'able 
circumstances) in a state of absolute inaction during an unlimited 
period. If secluded from the free access of air and moistm-e, and kept 
at a low temperatm-e, it is removed from all influences that woidd on 
the one hand occasion its disintegration, or on the other woidd call it 
into active life. But when again exposed to air and moistm-e, and 
subjected to a higher tem]3eratm'e, it either germinates or decays, 
according as the embryo it contains has or has not preserved its vital 
endowments — a question wdiich only experiment can resolve. The 


84 Original Articles. [Jan. 

process of germination is by no means a simple one. Tlie nutriment 
stored up in tlie seed is in great part in the condition of insoluble 
starcb ; and this must be brought into a soluble form before it can be 
appropriated by the embryo. The metamorphosis is effected by the 
agency of a ferment termed diastase ; which is laid up in the imme- 
diate neighbom'hood of the embryo, and which, when brought to act 
on starch, converts it in the first instance into soluble dextrine, and 
then (if its action be continued) into sugar. The dextrine and sugar, 
combined with the albuminous and oily compounds also stored up in 
the seed, form the " protoplasm " which is the substance immediately 
supplied to the young plant as the material of its tissues ; and the 
conversion of this protoj)lasm into various forms of organized tissue, 
which become more and more difierentiatod as development advances, 
is obviously referable to the vital activity of the germ. Now it can 
be very easily shown experimentally that the rate of groidli in the 
germinating embryo is so closely related (within certain limits) to the 
amoimt of Heat supplied, as to place its dependence on that agency 
beyond reasonable question ; so that we seem fully entitled to say that 
Heat, acting through the germ, suj)plies the constructive force or power 
by which the Vegetable fabric is built up.* But there appears to be 
another source of that power in the seed itself. In the conversion of 
the insoluble starch of the seed into sugar, and probably also in a 
further metamorphosis of a part of that sugar, a large quantity of cai'bon 
is eliminated from the seed by combining with the oxygen of the air 
so as to form carbonic acid ; this combination is necessarily attended 
with a disengagement of heat, which becomes very sensible when (as in 
malting) a large number of germinating seeds are aggregated together ; 
and it cannot but be regarded as probable that the heat thus evolved 
within the seed concurs with that derived from without, in supplying 
to the germ the force that promotes its evolution. 

The condition of the Plant which has attained a more advanced 
stage of its development differs from that of the germinating embryo 
essentially in this particular, that the organic compounds which it re- 
quires as the materials of the extension of the fabric are formed by 
itself, instead of being supplied to it from without. The tissues of 
the coloui-ed sm*faces of the leaves and stems, when acted on by light, 
have the peculiar power of generating — at the expense of carbonic acid, 
water, and ammonia — various ternary and quaternary organic com- 
pounds, such as chlorophyll, starch, oil, and albumen ; and of the 
compounds thus generated, some are appropriated by the constructive 
force of the Plant (derived from the heat with which it is supplied) to 
the formation of new tissues ; whilst others are stored up in the cavities 
of those tissues, where they ultimately serve either for the evolution 

* The effect of Heat is doubtless manifested very differently by different seeds ; 
such variations being partly specific, partly individual. But these are no greater 
than we see in the inorganic world ; the increment of temperature and the 
augmentation of bulk exhibited by different substances when subjected to the 
same absolute measure of heat, being as diverse as the substances themselves. 
The whole process of " malting," it may be remarked, is based on the regularity 
with which the seeds of a particular species may be at any time forced to a definite 
rate of germination by a definite increment of temperature. 

18G1.] Caepenter on Cvrrdation of Plujsical and Vital Forcea. 85 

of parts subsequently (Icvcloi^ccl, or for the nutrition of animals which 
employ them as food. Of the source of those peculiar affinities by 
which the components of the starch, albumen, &c., are brought toge- 
ther, we have no right to speak confidently ; but looking to tlie fact 
that these compoimds are not produced in any case by the direct union 
of their elements, and that a decomposition of binary compounds 
seems to be a necessary antecedent of their formation, it is scarcely 
improbable that, as suggested by Prof. Lc Conto (op, cit.), that source 
is to be found in the chemical forces set free in the jireliminary 
act of decomposition, in which the elements woiild be liberated in 
that " nascent condition " which is well known to be one of peculiar 
energy. _ 

The influence of Light, then, upon the Vegetable organism appears 
to be essentially exerted in bringing about what may be considered a 
higher mode of chemical combination between oxygen, hydrogen, and 
carbon, wth the addition of nitrogen in certain cases ; and there is no 
evidence that it extends beyond this. That the aj^propriation of the 
materials thus prepared, and their conversion into organized tissue in 
the operations of growth and development, are dei)endent on the agency 
of Heat, is just as evident in the stage of maturity as in that of ger- 
mination. And there is reason to believe, further, that an additional 
soiu'ce of organizing force is to be found in the retrograde metamor- 
phosis of organic compounds that goes on during the whole life of the 
plant ; of which metamorphosis the expression is furnished by the 
production of carbonic acid. This is peculiarly remarkable in the case 
of the Fungi, which, being incapable of forming new compounds under 
the influence of light, are entirely supported by the organic matters 
they absorb, and which in this resj^ect correspond on the one hand 
with the germinating embryo, and on the other mth Animals. Such 
a decomposition of a portion of the absorbed material is the only con- 
ceivable source of the large quantity of carbonic acid they are con- 
stantly giving out ; and it would not seem unlikely that the force 
sujjplied by this retrograde metamorphosis of the superfluoiis com- 
ponents of their food, which fall do^vn (so to speak) from the elevated 
plane of " proximate principles " to the lower level of comparatively 
simple binary compounds, supplies a force which raises another portion 
to the rank of living tissue ; thus accoimting in some degree for the 
very rapid growth for which this tribe of Plants is so remarkable. 
This exhalation of carbonic acid, however, is not peculiar to Fungi 
and germinating embryos ; for it takes place dm-ing the whole life of 
Flowering Plants, both by day and by night, in simshine and in shade, 
and fi'om their green as well as from their dark sui'faces ; and it 
is not improbable that, as in the case of the Fungi, its soui-ce lies 
partly in the organic matters absorbed ; recent investigations* having 
rendered it probable that Plants really take up and assimilate soluble 
humus, which, being a more highly carbonized substance than starch, 
dextrine, or cellulose, can only be converted into compounds of the 
latter kind by parting with some of its carbon. But it may also take 

* See the Memoir of M. Risler, " Oa the Absorption of Humus," in the ' Biblio- 
thequo Uuiverselle,' N. S. 185S, torn. i. p. 305. 

8S Original Articles. [Jan. 

place at the expense of compounds previously generated by the plant 
itself, and stored uj) in its tissues ; of which we seem to have an ex- 
ample in the unusual production of carbonic acid which takes place at 
the period of flowering, es23ecially in such plants as have a fleshy disk 
or receptacle containing a large quantity of starch ; and thus, it may 
be surmised, an extra suj)ply of force is provided for the maturation of 
those generative j)roducts, whose prejiaration seems to be the highest 
expression of the vital power of the Vegetable organism. 

The entire aggregate of organic compounds contained in the vege- 
table tissues, then, may be considered as the expression not merely of 
a certain amount of the material elements, oxygen, hydrogen, carbon, 
and nitrogen derived (directly or indirectly) from the water, carbonic 
acid, and ammonia of the atmosphere, but also of a certain amount of 
force which has been exerted, in raising these fi-om the lower plane of 
simple binary compounds to the higher level of complex " proximate 
principles ;" whilst the portion of these actually ;;converted into or- 
ganized tissue may be considered as the expression of a further measure 
of force, which, acting under the directive agency of the germ, has 
served to build up the fabric in its characteristic type. This con- 
structive action goes on dm-ing the whole Life of the Plant, which 
essentially manifests itself either in the extension of the original 
fabric (to which in many instances there seems no determinate limit), 
or in the production of the germs of new and indejjendent organisms. 
— It is interesting to remark that the development of the more per- 
manent parts involves the successional decay and renewal of j)arts 
whose existence is temporary. The "fall of the leaf" is the effect, 
not the cause, of the cessation of that peculiar functional activity of 
its tissues, which consists in the elaboration of the nutritive material 
required for the production of wood. And it would seem as if the 
duration of their existence stands in an inverse ratio to the energy of 
their action ; the leaves of " evergreens," which are not cast off until 
the appearance of a new succession, efifecting their functional changes 
at a much less rapid rate than do those of " deciduous " trees, whose 
term of life is far more brief. 

Thus the final cause or purpose of the whole Vital Activity of the 
Plant, so far as the individual is concerned, is to produce an indefinite 
extension of the dense, woody, almost inert, but permanent portions 
of the fabric, by the successional development, decay, and renewal of 
the soft, active, and transitory cellular parenchyma ; and, according 
to the principles already stated, the descent of a portion of the mate- 
rials of the latter to the condition of binary compoimds, which is 
manifested in the largely increased exhalation of carbonic ad'id that 
takes place from the leaves in the later part of the season, comes to 
the aid of external Heat in supplying the force by which another i)or- 
tion of those materials is raised to the condition of organized tissue. 
— The vital activity of the Plant, however, is further manifested in 
the provision made for the propagation of its race by the production of 
the germs of new individuals ; and here, again, we observe that whilst 
a higher temperature is usually required for the development of the 
flower, and the maturation of the seed, than that wliich suffices to sus- 

18G1.] Carpenter on Correlation of Physical and Vital Forces. 87 

tain the ordinary processes of vegetation, a special provision appears 
to bo made iu some instances for the evolution of force in the sexual 
apjjaratus itself, by the retrograde metamorphosis of a portion of tho 
organic comiioimds prcjiarcd by tlie jircvious nutritive operations. This 
seems the nearest ai)proach presented in the Vegetable organism, to 
what we shall iind to be an ordinary mode of activity in the Animal, 
That the performance of the generative act involves an extraordinary 
expenditure of vital force, appears fi'om this remarkable fact, that blos- 
soms which wither and die as soon as the ovules have been fertilized, 
may be kept fresh for a long i^oriod if fertilization be prevented. 

The decay which is continually going on during the life of a Plant 
restores to the Inorganic world, in the form of carbonic acid, water, 
and ammonia, a i^art of the materials drawn from it in the act of vege- 
tation ; and a reservation being made of those Vegetable products which 
are consmued as food by Animals, or which are preserved (like timber, 
flax, cotton, &c.) in a state of permanence, the various forms of decom- 
position which take place after death complete that restoration. But 
in returning, however slowly, to the condition of water, carbonic acid, 
ammonia, &c., the constituents of Plants give forth an amount of Heat 
equivalent to that which they would generate by the process of ordi- 
nary combustion ; and thus they restore to the inorganic world not 
only the materials but the forces, at the expense of which the Vegetable 
fabric was constructed. It is for the most j)art only in the humblest 
Plants, and in a particular phase of their lives, that such a restoration 
takes place in the form of motion ; this motion being, like grovt'th and 
development, an expression of the vital activity of the " zoospores " 
of Algae, and being obviously intended for their dispersion. 

Hence we seem justified in affirming that the Correlation' between 
Heat and the Organizing force of Plants is not less intimate than that 
which exists between Heat and Motion. The special attribute of the 
Vegetable germ is its power of utilizing after its own particular 
fashion the Heat which it receives, and of applying it as a constructive 
power to the building-up of its fabric after its characteristic type. 

88 Original Articles. [Jan. 


By Professor Williabi King, Queen's University in Ireland, and 
Queen's College, Galway. 

As it is my intention to confine myself to tlie consideration of the 
Neanderthal fossil with reference to its place in Nature, I must neces- 
sarily be brief in my remarks on the circumstances under which it 
occui-red, and on its geological age. 

The fossil was found in 1857, embedded in mud in a cave or fissm-e 
intersecting the southern rocky side of the ravine or deep narrow 
valley, called the Neanderthal, situated near Hochdal between Diissel- 
dorf and Elberfeld. A small stream or rivulet, known as the Diissel, 
flows along a narrow channel about sixty feet below the lowest part of 
the fissure, and on one side of the valley. 

It has long been known that human bones, belonging to an extinct 
race, and occm-ring in stalagmite along with the remains of the mam- 
moth and other fossil animals, have been foimd in the limestone 
fissures or caverns of the lofty precipices which overhang the river 
Mouse, in Belgium, about seventy English miles south-west of the 

Lyell's late work, ' The Antiquity of Man,' contains a very lucid 
description of the Mouse caverns, and of the one under consideration. 
In both cases it is evident that we have examples of ancient swallow- 
holes, into which have been washed bones, mud, and gravel, when 
their openings existed in the bed of large and powerful rivers. It was 
doubtless by the incessant abrading action of such ancient streams, 
continued for countless ages, that the Neanderthal, and much of the 
broad valley of the Meuse, became scooi^ed out. 

Few Geologists will dispute that the Meuse caverns are of the same 
age as the flint-implement gravels of the Somme, and that both belong 
to the latest division of the glacial or (as I have lately termed it) 
Clydian period.* If we accept the physical conditions of the Meuse 
caverns as demonstrative of their having been filled up in that remote 
age, we cannot but recognize in the corresponding conditions of the 
Neanderthal fissure evidences which claim for it an equally high 
antiquity, notwithstanding certain differences seemingly supporting 
the opposite conclusion. 

The want of stalagmite and the doubtful absence of remains of extinct 
animals in the Neanderthal fissure may be readily explained ; and as 
to the physical differences, the Diissel is certainly not to be compared 
with the Meuse for size and abrading power, but it must be admitted 
that a mere rivulet may take quite as much time to scoop out a " ravine " 
as a river to excavate a considerable portion of a broad valley. 

Having finished my preliminary remarks, I shall next proceed to 
notice the fossil itself. 

According to Dr. Fuhlrott, of Elberfeld, the skeleton was found 

* Soo • Synoptical Table of the Aquooiui Eock-Sy stems,' 5th edition. 

18G4.] Kino on the Beputed Fossil Man of the Neanderthal, 89 

by somo workmen wliilo quarrying tlio rock wlicro tlio cavo occurs ; 
but, knowing nothing of tho importance of the discovery, and being 
very careless about it, tbcy sccui'cd chiefly only the larger bones. 
Fortimatcly these fell into tho hands of Fuhlrott, and they woro 
shortly afterwards described by Professor Schaaffhausen, of Bonn. 
The principal parts of the skeleton which have been preserved are tho 
cranium ; both thigh bones, perfect ; a perfect right humerus ; a per- 
fect radius ; the upper third of a right ulna corresponding to tho 
humerus and radius ; a left humerus, of which the upjier third is 
wanting ; a left ulna ; a left ilium, almost perfect ; a fragment of tho 
right scapida ; the anterior extremities of a rib of the right side ; tho 
same part of a rib of the left side ; the hinder part of a rib of tho 
right side ; and two short hinder portions, and one middle portion of 
some other ribs. 

The skeleton, or rather, as miich as is preserved of it, is charac- 
terized by vmusual thickness, and a great development of all tho 
elevations and depressions for the attachment of the muscles. Tho 
ribs, which have a singularly roimded shape, and an abrupt curvature, 
more closely resemble the corresponding bones of a carnivorous 
animal, than those of man.* 

Although a difficulty may be felt in resting a satisfactory argument 
upon merely the great size of its osseous fi-amework, and the pecu- 
liar form of its ribs, it cannot but be admitted that these characters 
aftorded some groimds for the belief, at fii'st entertained, that the 
Neanderthal fossil had not belonged to a hmnan being. Whether a 
more close examination of other parts of the fossil will confirm this 
hypothesis, it is the object of the present paper to determine. 

The skull is deficient in its basal and facial portions, but retains 
all the parts lying above a line connecting the glabella — or space 
between the eye-brows — and the centre of the posterior part of the 
skull immediately above the hollow of the neck, to which the name 
occipital or posterior tubercle is given. f Fortunately the parts 
alluded to, which are of uncommon thickness, enable one to determine 
some highly important points in craniology. 

The frontal — or bone of the forehead^ — possesses the upper border 
and roof-plate of the eye-sockets, the inter-orbital space, the orifices 
of the frontal sinuses, and both outer orbital processes : the upper 
part of the alisphenoid belonging to the right side appears also to be 
present. The occipital — or j)osterior bone — retains, in addition to the 
tubercle, the superior transverse ridges. The parietals — or upper 
side-bones — possess the impression of the temporal squamosal. The 
temporals — or lower side-bones — are broken off, though it would appear 
from Huxley's figm'e,§ that the mammillary portion of the left one is 
still preserved. The lambdoidal suture — or joining of the pai-ietals 

* See Busk's translation of Scbaaifliausen's paper in the 'Natural History 
Review,' 1S61, pp. 158-162. 

t Tlie line A A, in Fig. 1, Plate I., passes from the glabella to the occipital 

X The explanation of the individual parts of the skull is prefixed to Plates I. 
and II. 

§ See ' Man's Place iu Nature,' Fig. 25 A, facing page 138. 

90 Original Articles. [Jan. 

and the occipital — including the adclitamentum, is well marked ; the 
sagittal suture — or joining of the parietals in the medio-longitudinal 
line of the skull — is obscure ; while the coronal suture — or joining of 
the frontal and parietals in front of, and at right angles to the last- 
named suture — is but faintly marked at the crown and obliterated at 
the sides. The bounding line of the temporal muscles (situated on 
each side of the skull in front of, and above the ear) is tolerably well 

In general terms, the Neanderthal skull is of an elongated oval 
form, with a basal outline bearing much resemblance to that of the 
Negro cranium represented by Martin.* It is of large size, being 
about an inch longer than ordinary British skulls ; in width, however, 
it does not much exceed them. The forehead, uncommonly low and 
retreating, terminates in front by enormously projecting brow or super- 
ciliary ridges, which, besides being very thick, slightly rounded on 
their anterior aspect, and rather strongly arched above the eye-sockets, 
extend iminterruptedly across from one side to the other. The outer 
orbital processes — or horns of the brow-ridges — are also unduly 
developed; being thick and projecting. On the whole, there is a 
remarkable absence of those contours and proportions which prevail 
in the forehead of our species ; and few can refuse to admit that the 
deficiency more closely approximates the Neanderthal fossil to the 
anthropoid apes than to Homo sapiens. 

The greatest width of the skull is towards its posterior part, and on 
a level not much higher than the mammillary region — a character 
which is essentially pithecoid or simial. In human skulls, the greatest 
width is considerably higher — usually on a line connecting the centres 
of ossification of the parietals : f on the contrary, the Neanderthal 
cranium, like that of the Chimpanzee, is without any particular pro- 
minency where those centres may be assumed to be situated. 

In addition to possessing a low retreating forehead, the fossil skull 
is remarkably flattened at the vertex, which, according to Huxley, rises 
about 3-4 inches only above what is called the glabello-occipital 
plane :J in Man, the corresponding part is generally about an inch 
higher. From the vertex there is a slightly cm-ving fall both towards 
the front and the back, ending in the former direction at the origin of 
the brow-ridges, and in the latter, at the occipital tubercle. The curving 
is more rounded and regular on the anterior half— particularly at the 
upper portion of the brow, which, in consequence, is somewhat pro- 
minent — than on the posterior half : on the latter, there is a slight 
depression just above the apex of the lambdoidal suture. The pos- 
terior fall of the Neanderthal skull, as a peculiarity, was first pointed 
out by Huxley, who remarks that " the occipital region slopes obliquely 
upward and forward, so that the lambdoidal sutm-e is situated weU 
upon the upper surface of the cranium : " in other words, when the 
glabello-occipital plane is made horizontal, the apex of the lambdoidal 
suture is decidedly in front of the posterior tubercle. In ordinary 

* ' Natural History of Man and Monkeva,' Fie-. 182, p. 120. 

t Plate II. Fig. 5,h. 

X Bee Plate I. Fig. 1, A A. 

1864.] 'Kma on the Itepded Fossil Man of the Neanderthal. 91 

skulls, it is ■well known, the backward slope terminates near tlie apex 
of the lambcloiclal sutiire, below which the occipital bone stands more 
or less vertical to the glabello-occipital plane. The Neanderthal 
craniiun, in its posterior featui-es, is approached by some savage races ; 
also occasionally by a few inhabitants of the British Isles. Moreover, 
judging from the few data at oiu* command, the approximation appa- 
rently characterized the ancient " Borreby people," and the extinct 
race of the Mouse, supposing the latter to be represented by a nearly 
perfect skull which Schmerling obtained fi'om the Engis cave near 
Liege ;* but in no human tribe extinct, or existing, do we find both 
the vertex and the occiput so depressed and ape-like. Well might 
Huxley have felt a " ditficulty in believing that a human brain could 
have its posterior lobes so flattened and diminished as must have been 
the case in the Neanderthal man." 

Much"of the hinder half of the skull partakes of the slight round- 
ness just noticed ; but anterior to its greatest width, in the areas which 
were embraced by the temporal muscles, the sides are perpendicular, 
and their " fore and aft " outKne is straight and remarkably long. 

In these general characters, the Neanderthal skull is at once 
observed to be singularly different from all others which admittedly 
belong to the human species ; and they ■undoubtedly invest it ■with a 
close resemblance to that of the young Chimpanzee, represented by 
Busk in his translation of Shaaifhausen's memoir.f 

Another differential feature characterizes the fossil in question. 
In himaan skulls, even those belonging to the most degraded races, if 
the forehead be intersected at right angles to the glabello-occipital 
plane, on a line connecting the two outer orbital processes at their 
infero-anterior point, the intersection ■will cut off the frontal bone in 
its entire ■width, and to a considerable extent rising towards the coronal 
suture ; | whereas in the Neanderthal skull, the same intersection will 
cut off only the inferior and little more than the median portion of the 
fi'ontal.§ This is quite a simial characteristic, and rarely, if ever, 
occui's in man. II 

* Tliis is the only speciality in wliich the Engis and Neanderthal skulls agree. 

t See ' Natural History Review,' 1861, Plate IV. Fig. 6. 

X See Plate II. Fig. 5, B B. § See Plate I. Fig. 1, B B. 

II I have examined and made myself acquainted with skulls belonging to the 
principal races or varieties of man, in all of which the forward position oi the 
forehead, relatively to the outer orbital processes, is the general rule. The Engis 
skull exhibits it, and the same appears to be the case with the Borreby one, 
judging from the figure in Lyell's 'Geological Antiquity of Man,' p. 86. It 
may be doubted that the Plymouth skull, represented by Busk (' Nat. Hist. Eev.' 
1861, PI. V. fig. 6), is an exception. I possess a very remarkable skull, probably 
about 500 years or more old, taken last simimer out of the beautiful ruins of 
Corcomroo Abbey, situated among the Burren mountains, in county Clare, which 
ofiers a close approximation to the fossil in the depressed form of the forehead : 
indeed, although not altogether so abnormal in this respect as the Neanderthal 
skull, it has in appearance a better development, in consequence of the median 
part of its frontal being a little more rounded. There is no reason to believe that 
it belonged to an idiot, as it happens that most of the skulls lying about the ruins 
have a low frontal region. It is singular that the inhabitants of Burren a few 
hundred years ago should have been characterized by a remarkably depressed fore- 
head, while those now living have a weU-developed cranial physiognomy. 

92 Original Articles. [Jan. 

The last peculiarity is concomitant with another equally strik- 
ing. Viewing the Neanderthal forehead with reference to the situation 
of that portion of the brain which it enclosed, we may plainly per- 
ceive that the frontal lobes of the cerebrum have been situated behind 
the outer orbital processes. As far as I have ascertained, we cannot 
say this of man ; for, apparently, in all existing races, whose skull has 
not been modified by artificial pressm-e, the corresponding parts of the 
brain actually extend in frorit of the orbital processes.* 

Notwithstanding the strong simial tendencies displayed by its 
general features, most of the writers who have described tliis skull 
do not appear to think otherwise than that it belonged to an indi- 
vidual of our species. There seems to be no doubt, whatever, 
on the part of the Honorary Secretary of the Anthropological 
Society, Mr. Carter Blake, that the Neanderthal fossil is specifically 
identical with Man. He considers it to be the remains of some poor 
idiot or hermit, who died in the cave where the bones were found, f 
His reasons, however, are obviously unsatisfactory. " In reply to the 
suggestion," observes Huxley, " that the skull is that of an idiot, it may 
be urged that the onus p-dbandi lies with those who adopt the hypothesis. 
Idiotcy is compatible with very various forms and capacities of the 
cranium, but I know of none which present the least resemblance to the 
Neanderthal skull. "| Blake admits that its frontal peculiarities give 
the cranium an " apparent ape-like character ; " but if such peculiar- 
ities be the result of mal-development producing idiotcy, one would be 
equally justified in believing that the form of the skuU of the gorilla, 
or chimpanzee, is also produced by disease of the brain. Schaaff- 
hausen, seemingly, would have no hesitation in repudiating the idea 
that the frontal specialities of the fossil are the result of individual 
pathological deformity.§ 

In case it should be suggested that this remarkable cranium has 
received its form from artificial pressure, I may observe that no one 
who has described it seems to entertain such an opinion ; indeed its 
symmetry, also noticed by SchaafPhausen, is quite opposed to the 
supposition that the skull has undergone any process of artificial modi- 

Huxley, while admitting that it is the most ape-like and most 
brutal of all human skulls yet discovered, states that it is " closely 
apj)roached " by some Aiistralian forms, and "even more closely affined 
to the skulls of certain ancient people, who inhabited Denmark during 
the Stone period." |1 I have no intention to deny that there are gene- 

* The Corcomroo skull, noticed in the previous footnote, although closely 
approximated to the Neanderthal one in its low forehead, and this alone, is strictly 
human in the forward extension of the frontal lobes of the brain relatively to the 
outer orbital processes. 

t See ' Geologist,' vol. V. p. 207. 

X See Lyell's ' Geological Antiquity of Man,' p. 85. 

§ The writer of an article on Lyell's ' Geological Antiquity of Man,' in the last 
number of the ' Quarterly Eeview,' summarily disposes of tlie Neanderthal skull 
with tlie gratuitous assertion, that it is quite removed from the pithecoid type, and 
possibly belonged to an idiot. 

II ' Man's Place in Nature,' p. 157. 

1864.] KiNQ on the Beputcd Fossil Man of the Neanderthal. 93 

ral features of resemblance between tlio Australian, Neanderthal, and 
ancient Danish crania ; but it appears to mc, judging from the figures 
(31 and 32) in the deeply pliilosopliical work, 'Man's Place in Na- 
ture,' that a closer resemblance is assumed than really exists. No ono 
would have any hesitation in admitting that the Borreby skull, repre- 
sented under one of the figures cited, is strictly human, — nay, from 
what I have seen myself, I have no hesitation in saying that precisely 
the same cranial conformation is often repeated in the present day ; 
but it has yet to be shown that any skulls hitherto found are moro 
than approximately similar to the one under consideration. 

The proposition at present contended for is apparently invalidated 
by the fact that, among certain species of animals — notably those under 
domestication — skulls very dissimilar from each other may be found. 
It is, therefore, to be apprehended that,'however clearly the Neanderthal 
fossil may be shown to be inadmissible into the human species, an attempt 
will be made to set aside the consequent conclusion by an apjjeal to 
the fact alluded to. But this I contend is not a case in point, as will 
be evident after a moment's reflection on the various breeds of the Dog 
— the best kno^vu of our domesticated species. These breeds, so re- 
markably differentiated by cranial peculiarities, are artificial, whereas 
the varieties of mankind are natural. The dissimilar skulls met with 
in the former are merely striking illustrations of organic or structm-al 
modifiability, produced by what Darwin calls Natural Selection, but 
nothing more. 

Again, some weight seems to be due to the consideration that the 
human species (in which I include all the existing races of man) is 
characterized by a great variety of skulls. We have abundant ex- 
amples affording characters which closely link together the most dis- 
similar forms, so that it is impossible to di-aw a line of demarcation 
between the extremes of dolichocephaly and brachycephaly,* or between 
the lofty forehead of Indo-Em*opeans and the depressed one of the 
Australian, Nay, the most degraded race we are acquainted with — 
the Mincopies of the Andaman Islands — may be strictly regarded as 
closely affined by cranial conformation to the highest intellectual races. 
It might, therefore, be urged that the Neanderthal skull is simj)ly 
an aberrant form, but which is, nevertheless, inseparably linked on to 
the Indo-European type. If sufficient has not yet been adduced to 
dispel this idea, the following additional evidences, referring to the 
particular parts of the bones composing the fossil cranimn, will, it is 
thought, be deemed fully adequate for the purpose. 

Commencing with the Frontal. — Fuhlrott and Huxley have satis- 
factorily sho\\Ti that this bone is fm'nished with large frontal sinuses ; 
and apjiarently they regard these as the cause of the excessive pro- 
minency of the superciliary ridges. It may be reasonably doubted, 
however, that this is the case. Frontal sinuses, it is well known, do 
not always coexist with prominent brow-ridges, as, for example, in the 
Australian and the Chimpanzee : on the other hand, the former may 
exist without being associated with any more than an ordinary de- 

* Professor Ketzius distinguished long skulls, and short or round skulls, re- 
spectively by the names dolichocephalic and hrachycephalic. 

94 Original Articles. [Jan. 

velopment of the latter. I have seen frontal sinuses extending to 
nearly the origin of the outer orbital processes, and almost large 
enough, even at their termination, to admit the small finger to be in- 
serted into them, yet the brow-ridges were not j)articularly j)rominent. 
But whether the Neanderthal sinuses extend the whole length of the 
brow-ridges, or they are simply confined to the region of the glabella, 
their large size, in either case, is unusual in man, and they more strongly 
approach to, or resemble, as the case may be, those of the Gorilla. 

As to the excessive prominency of the brow-ridges, — instead of re- 
garding this featm'e as having been produced by the frontal sinuses, — 
there is more probability that, like the other extraordinary " elevations 
and depressions "^of the skeleton, pointed out by Schaaffhausen, it 
is another speciality consequent on the greatly develoj)ed muscular 
system, which, from what has" already been stated, evidently cha- 
racterized the so-called Neanderthal man. 

The orbital cavities appear to have had a circular rim, as in cer- 
tain apes, there being no angle in that part joining the glabella. This 
is a feature unknown in any of the human races : in them the orbits 
are always subquadrate.* 

The roof of the orbital cavities is altogether less concave, par- 
ticularly on the outer side, than in Man ; and, although the inner ex- 
tremity of the plate forming the roof is broken off, sufficient remains 
to show that the cavities contracted sooner than usual. The cavities 
also appear to have been uncommonly divergent : if this were actu- 
ally the case, its significance would point towards one of the spe- 
cialities of the Gorilla. 

Temporals. — As already stated, only the impression of the upper 
squamosal is seen on the parietals ; but it suffices to show, as pointed 
out by Huxley, that this part had a comparatively low arcuation : 
the highest point of the arch reaches little more than half the height 
it attains in ordinary human skulls. Besides occurring among apes, 
an equally low arcuated squamosal distinguishes the human foetus ; 
and in some savage races — Australians and Africans — the same part 
is also depressed, but not so much as in the fossil. The Engis and 
Borreby skulls are strictly normal in this particular, "j" 

* In some apes the rim of the orbits is of the human form. 

t Under this head may be noticed a jiart wliich appears to have been over- 
looked in the fossil. On an excellent cast, supplied by Mr. Gregory, of Golden- 
square, London, there occurs on tlie right side and in front of i\\e squamosal 
impression a raised flattened plate, whicli looks hke the upper portion of the 
alisphenoid (see Plate I. Fig. 1, h) : tlie forward situation of this plate prevents 
it being taken for the anterior part of the temporal ; besides, its posterior side 
exliibits what appears to be the impression of the squamosal. Tlie anterior 
margia of the supposed alisphenoid is about an inch behind the outer orbital 
process. Dr. Knox long ago pointed out in a Tasmanian skull a square-shaped 
bone, nearly an inch in extent, interposed between the alisphenoid and the parietal. 
I perceive that this abnormality in a Tasmanian skull is represented in Fig. 225 
of the beautiful edition, just published by Renshaw, of Dr. Knox's translation of 
Milne-Edwards' ' Manuel de Zoologie.' I have also seen the same bone, but only 
on the 'left side, of an "Australian" skull belonging to the Dublin University 
Museum. Perhaps this interposed bone corresponds, in nature as well as situation, 
to the flattened plate observable in the Neanderthal fossil. 

1864.] Kma on the Beputed Fossil Man of the Neandertltal. 95 

Occipital. — Tlio upj^cr portion of tliis hone is quite Rcnucircviliir in 
outline, its siituirJ (lainbdoidul) border running with an even creKcentic 
curve from one transverse ridge to tlie other :* generally in human 
skulls, including the Engis one, the outline approaches more or less to 
an isosceles triangle. f The width of the occipital at the transverse 
ridges is much less than is common to Man ; and the disparity is the 
more striking in consequence of the widest portion of the fossil occu- 
pying an imusually backward position. 

Taking into consideration the forward and upward cmwing of the 
upper portion of the occipital bone as previously noticed, its semicir- 
cular outline, and smallness of width, we have in these characters, 
taken together, a totality as yet unobserved in any hmnan skull belong- 
ing to cither extinct, or existing races ; while it exists as a conspicuous 
feature in the skull of the Chimpanzee. 

Parietals. — In Man the upper border of these bones is longer than 
the inferior one ; but it is quite the reverse in the Neanderthal skull. 
The diifereuce, amounting to nearly an inch, will be readily seen by 
referring to Figures 1 and 2, in Plate II.; the former representing the 
right parietal of a British human skull, and the latter the corresj)ond- 
ing bone of the fossil. These figures also show that the Neanderthal 
parietals are strongly distinguished by their shape, and the form of 
theii" margins : in shape they are five-sided, and not subquadrate, like 
those of the British skull ; | while their anterior and posterior margins 
have each exactly the reverse of the form characteristic of Man. 

The additamentmn, which undoubtedly gives the parietals their 
five- sided shape, is on a level ^\dth the superior transverse ridge, and 
much longer than usual. This peculiarity is common to the human 
foetus : I have, likewise, observed an approach to it in a " Caffre " 
skull belonging to the Dublin University Museum, in which, also, the 
upper and lower borders of the parietals are about equal in length. 
But still the abnormality of the latter case is not at all so extreme 
as the condition observed in the fossil. These particular featm-es 
also are characteristically simial ; for in extending our survey to the 
Chimpanzee, and some other so-called Quadrumanes, their parietals 
are seen to present a great similarity to those of the Neanderthal 

I have now, as it appears to me, satisfactorily shown that not only 
in its general, but equally so in its particular characters, has the fossil 

* Plate II. Fig. 4. t Plate II. Fig. 3. 

X The outlines were taken by pressing a sheet of paper on the parietals ; and, 
■when in this position, marking their margins by following the hounding sutures ; 
next, by cutting the paper according to the lines given by the sutures, and 
allowing it to retain its acquired convexity : the outlines were then marked oft* on 
another sheet of paper. Possibly the antero-inferior angle of the Neanderthal 
parietal, as given in the figure, is not strictly correct, owing to the coronal sutm-e 
being obliterated in that part, but I ventui-e to state that it is approximately true. 

§ On the cast, an incised line runs from the lamhdoiJal suture (whore the ad- 
ditamentum joins it) towards the posterior tubercle. Is this the suture which 
occm-s near and parallel to the transverse ridges in fojtal skulls, and occasionally 
in that of adults ? In the skull of the " Calfre," noticed in the text, this suture, 
which is only seen on the right side, is situated above tlie ridge ; but in the fossil, 
it is below this part. 

96 Original Articles. [Jan. 

under consideration the closest affinity to the apes. Only a few points 
of proximate resemblance have been made out between it and the 
human skull ; and these are strictly peculiar to the latter in the fcetal 
state. The cranium of the human foetus, however, possesses the lofty 
dome, the forward position of the frontal respectively to the outer 
orbital processes, the greatest width at the parietal centres of ossifica- 
tion, and the vertical occipital, which are so conspicuous in the adult, 
but which are remarkably non-characteristic of the Neanderthal skull. 
Besides, so closely does the fossil cranium resemble that of the Chim- 
panzee, as to lead one to doubt the propriety of genericaUy placing it 
with Man. To advocate this view, however, in the absence of the facial 
and basal bones, would be clearly overstepping the limits of inductive 

Moreover, there are considerations of another kind which power- 
fully tend to induce the belief that a wider gap than a mere generic 
one separates the human species from the Neanderthal fossil. 

The distinctive faculties of Man are visibly expressed in his elevated 
cranial dome — a feature which, though much debased in certain savage 
races, essentially characterizes the human species. But, considering 
that the Neanderthal skull is eminently simial, both in its general and 
particular characters, I feel myself constrained to believe that the 
thoughts and desires which once dwelt within it never soared beyond 
those of the brute. The Andamaner, it is indisputable, possesses but 
the dimmest conceptions of the existence of the Creator of the 
Universe : his ideas on this subject, and on his own moral obli- 
gations, place him very little above animals of marked sagacity ; * 
nevertheless, viewed in connection with the strictly human conforma- 
tion of his cranium, they are such as to sj)ecifically identify him with 
Homo sapiens. Psychical endowments of a lower grade than those 
characterizing the Andamaner cannot be conceived to exist : they 
stand next to brute benightedness. 

Applying the above argument to the Neanderthal skull, and consi- 
dering that it presents only an approximate resemblance to the 
cranium of man, that it more closely conforms to the brain-case of 
the Chimpanzee, and, moreover, assuming, as we must, that the simial 
faculties are unimprovable — incapable of moral and theositic concep- 
tions — there seems no reason to believe otherwise than that similar 
darkness characterized the being to which the fossil belonged. f 

* It has often been stated that neither the Andamaners, nor the Australians, 
have any idea of the existence of God : there are circumstances, however, recorded 
of these races which prevent my accepting the statement as an absolute truth. 

t A. paper advocating the views contained in this article was read at the last 
meeting of the British Association, held in Nuwcastle-on-Tyue. In that paper I 
called the fossil by the name of Homo Neanderthalensis ; but I now feel strongly 
inclined to believe that it is not only specifically but genericaUy distinct from Man. 

Quarterly TjournAlof Science ,119 





TtlJ .hi):-::5.,_L ;i.y;AJ^[ -OF NEANDERTHAL , ."i.;. 

18G4.J Kino on the Beputed Fossil Man of the Neanderthal. 97 

Explanation of Plate I. 
Fig. l.—Ji/'ght Sl'le of Neanderthal Skull. 
A A. GlabeU.o-occipit.'il pluno. 

B B. Line intersecting the forehead at right angles to the last plane through 
both outer orbital processes. 

(These lines are interrupted so as not to obscure any parts of 
the skull.) 
a to a'. Border of squamosal impression. 

(Letter 'a' is just below the widest part of the skull.) 

b. ? Alisplienoid. 

c. Portion of additamcntum . 

Fig. 2. — Top of Neanderthal Skull. 
a, a. Outer orbital processes. 

The transverse line on the middle of skull represents the coronal 
sutiu-e. (This and the corresponding line in Fig. 1 are copied 
from Busk's figures.) 

The semicircular line at the posterior part of skull represents 
the lambdoidal suture. 

The medio-longitudinal line represents the sagittal suture. 

Fig. 3. — Front of Neanderthal Skull. 

a. a. Outer orbital processes or horns of the brow-ridges. 

b. Inter-orbital sjjace. 

c. Portion of roof-plate of right orbital cavity. 

(Only the anterior half of the frontal bone is represented.) 

*^* The figures in this plate are taken from a plaster cast. 

Explanation of Plate II. 
Fig. 1. — Right Parietal of a Human {Irish) Skull. 

a. Coronal edge. 

b. Lambdoidal edge. 

c. Sagittal edge. 

d. Squamosal edge. 

Fig. 2. — Right Parietal of Neanderthal SkuU. 
a, b, c, d. Same as in last Figure, 
e. Additamental edge. 

Fig. 3. — Occipital of a Human {Irish) SJmll. 
a a. Lambdoidal edge. 
b, b. Transverse ridges. 
c. Occipital or posterior tubercle. 

Fig. 4. — Occipital of Neanderthal Skull. 

Letters same as in last Figure. 

Fig. 5. — Right Side-view of Dome of Human SkuU 
A A. Glabello-occipital plane. 
B B. Glabello-occipital intersecting plane. 

a. Frontal. 

b. Parietal. (The letter is on the centre of ossification and widest part 

of the skull.) 

c. Occipital. 

d. Temporal. 

e. Alispheuoid. 

( 98 ) [Jan. 



The movements in tlie Agricultiu-al world during tlie past few months 
have related more to the business than to the Art of land cultivation. 
Agricultiu'al Societies and Meetings have concerned themselves more 
with such questions as the relations of landlord and tenant, or of 
master and servant, than with details of the processes of the farm, or 
of the appliances by which they are carried out. And just in propor- 
tion as the motive — the efficient cause — is important in comparison 
with the mere machinery, so the nature of these business relations 
will, in any occupation or profession, always be the chief of all the 
influences affecting progress or success. 

This is especially the case in Agriculture : — ■ 

When the landowner guarantees possession of a farm for a number 
of years, and does not restrict its cultivation to any precise routine of 
operations, he induces the tenant of that farm to apply all his mind 
and all his money to its management, for then there is given to him 
hope and opportunity of a reward for his outlay and his labour. The 
land is to a certain extent a machine, and its fertility depends on the 
use that it can make of the fertilizing influences of air and rain. Its 
powers as a machine in this respect can, in the case of wet and water- 
logged soils, be wonderfully increased ; but the alterations needed for 
this purpose are very costly. Land-drainage, marling, liming, burning, 
are all expensive operations. A man may, in the case of wet clay 
soils, sometimes profitably spend nearly as much again in these 
improvements as the land is worth. It is folly to suppose that he 
will do this on the lands of another. They must be made his ovm. on 
certain conditions and for sufficient time to enable him to reap the reward 
of that increased fertility which has been conferred. A lease is thus, 
for all pm'poses of considerable land improvement by the farmer, 
absolutely necessary. 

Where, however, the improvements do not involve so large an 
expenditure, and where that expenditure can, under the several branches 
of it, be accurately recorded, it becomes possible so to keep an account 
between the landlord and tenant as to enable the former to repay the 
latter at any time, whatever may be due from the one to the other. 
And the system of tenancy at "will, coupled with an agreement for the 
repayment of the balance of this account, does, in many parts of 
England, both maintain and promote a very high degree of cultivation. 
Nevertheless, this is but a makeshift arrangement, by which landowners 
hope to obtain the full advantage to all classes of a large expenditure 
of tenant's capital without in any degi'ee abandoning those special 
privileges to themselves which the possession of landed property alone 
confers. And thus the Earl of Shrewsbury, at one of the recent dis- 
cussions on the form of an agreement on this principle between landlord 

1864.] Agriculture. 00 

and tenant, gave tlio fullest acquiescence to the principle of repaying 
the tenant for his outlay ; but at the suuie time the completest refusal 
to the principle, far more influential for good, of granting leases to his 
tenants for terms of years. On the one hand, he said : — 

" I should feel it to be dishonest if I allowed any tenant of mine 
to leave me in debt to him. If a man put on to a farm that which 
would improve it, I should feel bound not to let that man leave my 
estate without being remunerated for what is xmexhaustcd." 

On the other hand, he also said : — 

" I adhere to what I have always said respecting leases, namely, 
that nothing will induce me to give a man a lease, because in the 
place a lease is all on one side. The landlord remains, but the tenant, 
if he be inclined to be fraudident, may go. I boldly and honestly state 
that I will never surrender my property to a tenant. I mean that no 
man who will allow his sons to poach and act disgracefully shall have 
control over my land for a number of years." 

With whatever cordiality we may admire the evident honesty in 
every sense which these remarks display, it is also evident that they 
are dictated by an erroneous judgment, not only of the interest of 
landowners, but of the general character of tenantry. 

The lease is not " all on one side." It not only confers advan- 
tages on the tenant, but it secures the annual payment of the sum at 
which those advantages have been valued by the landlord. The land- 
lord does not " remain : " his successor may be either himself in a 
different mood of mind, or the inheritor of his estate ; and in either 
case it is within his power to put an end to an imwritten bargain. 

Again, a landlord does not " sm-render his property to a tenant " 
under the lease, so much as the tenant is asked to surrender his pro- 
perty to the landlord under tenancy at will. Unlike the tenant's share 
in the improvements he confers upon the land he occupies, the land 
remains. Baron Liebig indeed speaks of the exhaustion of the land, 
but no such thing is known in practice. The " worn-out " farm of 
the practical man would be readily taken again by another tenant at the 
former rent, if only it were let to him for a year or two for nothing. 
Two years' rent, SI. or 4Z, per annum, are thus probably the utmost 
injury ordinary land receives by cross- cropping and hard usage. And 
if land be let on lease, you must suppose its tenant to be not only 
fraudulent but a fool, to do even this amoiuit of injury to it. The 
fear which a landlord expresses lest his property should be injured 
by letting it out of his hands for so long a time is thus altogether 
visionary. The tenant's capital is to a great extent the cause of, and it 
is the secm-ity for, its fertility. That system which most encoui-ages 
the outlay of this capital is best in the interest of the landlord as well 
as in that of the tenant and consumer. 

And the fear of having an ill-conditioned set of neighboiirs 
permanently collected round you by granting leases, is equally 
visionary. It has been proved in other walks of life that the plan of 
universal restriction — of treating all men with suspicion — of making 
your general arrangements hinge on the possibility of every man being 
a rogue, is a blunder. It is an especial mistake in Agricultm-e. For 


100 Chronicles of Science. [Jan. 

there is a certain class-colom-iug perceptible in farming, as in other 
professions, and tenant-farmers may be safely spoken of as a worthy 
and well-conditioned body of men. If, as is sometimes feared, a 
general prevalence of the lease should displace the homely and neigh- 
bourly class with whom in English country districts one has so 
long enjoyably associated, by a set of energetic, ruthless, restless, 
money-making " sharps," the change would be lamentable indeed ; but 
the fear is ludicrous. However many new men may be entering 
Agricultm-e from other walks of life, it will always be that the bulk of 
farmers have been bred by farmers. And it is an easier and a better 
thing to engraft ujion the characteristic good qualities of this class, or 
rather (for they already exist) to foster in them the intelligence and 
enterprise, and energy of commercial life, by adopting more generally 
a commercial view of the relations between landlord and tenant, than 
it will be to engraft a strict valuation and acknowledgment of tenant 
right upon the system of tenaney-at-will. 

Although this Journal is devoted rather to the consideration of 
science than of business, yet the case of Agricultm-e, owing to the 
peculiarity of its raw material, land, is so excej)tional, that these 
general remarks on what, more than anything else, determines its pro- 
gress and improvement, may be permitted in a paper introductory to 
a quarterly series, descriptive of the j^rogress and improvement which 
from time to time will have to be recorded. 

And as a preliminary study of the subject which will thus at 
intervals engage us, we will now shortly enumerate the particulars in 
which this progress consists, or to which is owing increased produce 
of food from the land. 

1 . It is owing in the first place to better tillage. The object of tillage 
is the creation of an increased available siu'face within the soil, on 
which may be prepared and dej)osited food for plants, and over which 
the roots of plants may feed. The greater the quantity of this internal 
siiperficies to act as a laboratory, as a warehouse, as a pasturage, and 
the better stored it is, under a given extent of land, then so long as 
the fitness of the mechanical condition of the land with reference 
to particular plants is preserved, the more fertile is that land with 
reference to those plants. 

In order to the creation of this inner surface a greater depth of soil 
is stirred, and clods are comminiited. In order to the increased acces- 
sibility of this inner surface land is drained. The air and rain water 
which then traverse soil and subsoil instead of merely lodging in them, 
introduce substances into this warehouse and activity into this labora- 

The air which rain-water thus draws through the soil as it sinks 
downwards to the drains is as necessary to the fertility of the soil as it 
is to the heat of bm-ning coals. The fire will merely smoulder until, 
by the erection of a chimney over it, a current upwards through the 
burning mass is impressed upon the air. And even then, in fires of 
caking coal, the heaj) may smoulder until, by the smashing of the fuel, 
that inner surface of the fire, where the action of the air takes place, 
throughout is multiplied, and the impervious ceiling — or floor, as we 

1864. j Agriculture. 101 

miglit call it, to an U2)ward curreut — which has hindered tho passage of 
the air over that inner surface, is broken up. 

Land drainage is the provision of a jiassage for the rain-water, along 
with which tlie fertilizing air has thus a downward current given it 
through tlic soil and subsoil. And tillage, especially tillage by steam- 
power, which does not cake a floor, as horse-power docs, beneatli the 
soil it stirs — has all that enlivening effect of the poker on a caked c(jal 
fire, whicli tho parallel suggests. Extended drainage has a great deal 
to do with our increased produce. Mr. Bailey Denton estimates that 
nearly 2,000,000 acres have within the past fifteen years been under- 
drained, and tho fertility of these acres has no doubt been largely 

Deeper and better tillage has contributed to the same result. The 
extension of autumnal tillage is an undoubted fact ; the enormously 
increased use of implements of the grubber class is another ; the general 
adoption of a better form of plough is a third ; the more general adop- 
tion of the fertilizing practice of bm-ning clay soils is a fom-th. The 
success which has at length rewarded unconquerable perseverance in 
the attemj^t to use steam-power for tillage operations is a fiuther great 
fact, which, if it cannot yet be quoted in explanation of agricultural 
progress, will unquestionably be looked back upon ten years hence as 
having contributed largely to the increased fertility which will then 
have to be recorded. 

2, In the second place our agricultural progress has been owing to 
the greater richness of home-made maniires, and to the greater use made 
of imported fertilizers. The imports of guano since 1840 have amoimted 
to 3i millions of tons ; the imports of cubic nitre, which averaged 
10,000 to 14,000 tons per annum up to 1858, have since varied from 
25,000 to 40,000 tons per annum. The imports of bones since 1848 
have increased from 30,000 to 70,000 or 80,000 tons annuaUy. All 
these are manming substances. 75,000 to 80,000 tons of Suffolk and 
Cambridgeshire coprolites, and 15,000 to 20,000 tons of Sombrero 
phosphate, are also used in the superphosphate manufacture, which now 
probably exceeds in worth £1,000,000 per annum. To facts like this 
add the enormous extension in the use of oil cakes and richer foods in 
the meat manufactm-e, by which the richness of home-made manure is 
increased — the increased adoption of the practice of applying manm-e 
at once to the land, instead of rotting it in heaps, Avhich is an economy, 
and so an addition to oiu' resources worth naming — the increased prac- 
tice of feeding and collecting manure under shelter, which is another 
great economy — and the increased cai'e to properly pulverise and even 
dissolve manures, so as to distribute them thoroughly through the soil, 
which is another first-class example of a most important improvement 
in farm practice. On the other hand there is the increased value of 
the town sewage — due to the improved drainage of our toNMis — which 
is still suffered to go to waste. On the whole, however, there cannot 
be a doubt that the increased fertility of the soil is due not only to 
improved drainage and tillage, but to the direct application of fertiliz- 
ing ingredients in a more liberal and economical manner. 

3. Leaving now the soil, there is the way in which its increased 

102 Chronicles of Science. [Jan 

fertility is developed and expressed. It will on the whole he admitted 
that, at least on arahle lands, there are fewer weeds ; our fallow crops 
are cleaner, our tillage and manures are not so much wasted on plants 
we do not want to grow. 

Another fact of importance is the prevalence of rotations of crops 
in which hare fallows are diminished, and in which there is a larger 
acreage of the more valuable crops. The prevalent rotation of the 
country is the fom'-field course, in which wheat, turnips, barley, and 
clover occupy one-fourth of the land apiece. But it is common on 
well-cultivated land — where the land is folded by cake-fed sheep, and 
where a toji-dressing of guano is given to the corn, to take a crop of 
wheat between the turnips and the barley, so that three-fifths instead 
of two-quarters of the land are in grain crops. One-half of the clover 
land, too, is often sown instead with peas or beans, so that five-eighths 
instead of three-fifths are in grain. Again, over large districts, espe- 
cially in Scotland, potato culture to a great extent displaces turnips 
or other fallow crops, and thus provides a great increase of food for 

But besides the adoption of improved rotations, we have to report 
the improved cidtivation of individual crops. We suppose that the 
gradually diminished quantity of seed used per acre in growing grain 
crops— as drill husbandry extends, and as an increased independence 
of mere custom becomes the rule, each man determining his practice 
for himself — will be admitted by most people as an example of this 
kind. Certainly every one will admit that the extension of drill hus- 
bandry in the cultivation of root crops, the extended use of the horse- 
hoe in the cultivation of grain crops — the extended use of so-called 
artificial manm-es as toj)-dressings and otherwise in the cultivation of 
all crops — all illustrate the improved cultivation of the plants by which 
the greater fertility of our soils is expressed and utilized. 

Again, we owe our better crops to the selection and adoption of 
better sorts of the plants in cultivation. We do not suppose that indi- 
vidual sorts have improved upon our hands. Probably, as a general 
tule, they have deteriorated. But new sorts are being perpetually 
introduced ; and of wheat, barley, and oats, mangold-wurzel, swedes, 
turnips and potatoes, cabbages and vetches, a man can grow sorts as 
good as any — we think probably better than any — that his predecessors 
have known. 

4. We now come to the produce of meat, and the question of sort 
has a great deal to do with oiu" improvement here. Om* sheep are 
now ready for the butcher at 14 months old ; our cattle at 24 and 30 
months. Formerly it needed at least two years of feeding to make a 
smaller carcase of mutton, and at least three or four years' feeding to 
make a smaller carcase of beef. A thousand sheep upon a farm in 
March or April now mean something like 500 ewes in the lambing 
fold, and 500 sheep ready for the market. Formerly they meant not 
more than 300, and those a smaller lot ready for the butcher. And 
this great increase in the meat produce of a given head of stock is 
witnessed as much in pork and beef as it is in mutton. 

All the important breeds of cattle, sheep, and pigs have improved 

1864,J Agriculture. 103 

and iucreased in numbers duriiig this period. Mr. Straflfurd receives 
entries for his herd book from fourfold the number of short-horn 
breeders ; and the influence of this, the dominant breed of cattle, in 
crossing the general stock of the country, has wonderfully increased. 
Messrs. Duckham and Tanner Davy rei)ort no falling off in the num- 
ber and quality of the more local breeds of Hereford and Devon. Both 
Down and long-woolled sheep, and especially the latter, have made 
great strides, both as to increase of numbers and general improvement ; 
and much more general interest is taken in the improvement of the 
breeds of swine. The public attention has lately been dra\vn, or rather 
driven, to the fact that disease is rife among our stock, and it is said 
to be increasing. It is one great point in proof of great agricultural 
improvement that an evil of this kind, whether general or local, and 
wherever it exists, is not now left to fester, but is exposed and probed 
by an energetic public agitation, which wiU undoubtedly promote its 

The greater rapidity of growth, and the increased size of our im- 
proved stock, are owing partly to the better food we give our stock, as 
well as to their increased precocity, and the enormous extension of 
better bred stock. And thus, as part of this experience, we have a 
supply of more fertilizing manm'e and an increased growth of grain 
crops. It is, we believe, the fact that there are more acres of corn 
grown now than before has been ever knowTi in England, and we look 
upon this as a proof of agricultural progi-ess. And, so long as this is 
consistent with the maintenance of fertility, it is certainly for the 
interests of the consumer. It is said our climate is especially favour- 
able for the growth of gi'een crops. We believe there are more 
bushels of wheat per acre grown here than in any other country, 
whether we have so good a climate for it or not. And if the pre- 
sent extravagant cry for laying land down to grass which has hitherto 
grown grain and green crops in alternate husbandry shall to any extent 
prevail, we do not know who is to benefit by the change. Landlord, 
tenant, labom-er, and consmner are alike interested in the larger pro- 
duce and more energetic cultivation of arable land. 

The progress which we have thus sketched has been achieved rather 
by the extension of good Agriciiltui-e than by the invention of any new 
process during the period of it ; and yet there is enough of novelty 
and change apparent, too, on comparing the present farmer with his 
predecessor. Bones and rape- cake, soot and salt and gypsimi, lime 
and marl, and composts used to be the principal methods of adding 
directly to fertility ; and indirectly the same end was attained by the 
cultivation of successive green crops, feeding rye and rape, vetches 
and turnips, and cabbages off successively upon the same field. This 
" double " culture was advocated confidently as the perfection of arable 
cultivation twenty-eight or thirty years ago. Hear Mr. Middleton, 
who edited the 20th edition of Ai'thiu" Young's ' Farmer's Calendar,' 
writing on this very practice. " That very numerous class of supine 
persons," he says, " whose minds are so weak as not to adopt this 
practice, which-is the most improved that is known, will certainly con- 
tinue to complain of hard landlords and bad times. Such charact€r.«? 

104 Chronicles of Science. [Jau. 

do not succeed in any profession ; neither can they in Agriculture. I 
had nearly said they deserve to be ^Door, but, whether they deserve it 
or not, their destiny is to be so." 

Notwithstanding, however, Mr. Middleton's vigorous assertion of 
this practice, it is not thus that the farmer now in general seeks the 
increased fertility of his lands. He has guano, superphosphate, and 
other fertilizers at his command. He has machinery, not only for the 
increased efficiency, but for the cheapening of all agricultm-al processes. 
Steam-power both tills the soil and threshes out its produce. The 
mowing machine, hay-tedder, and reaper — the chaffcutter, pulper, and 
steamer — cheapen the laboui" of securing his crops, and economize the 
after-use of them. Better plants are grown, and better animals are 
fed, and the fertility which formerly came with profit under the best 
management in two or three years, is now achieved, vdth at least an 
equal j)rofit, almost at once. 

It will thus be seen that there is a large field over which the reader 
of the agricultm-al section of this Jom-nal may expatiate. And in the 
improvements of machinery and soil, of manures, and plants and ani- 
mals, there is scope enough both for the ingenuity and energy of the 
practical and scientific man, and in the present activity of both in the 
agricultural world, for the industry of the recording Journalist. 


Germany, ever foremost in practical astronomy has, within the last 
few months, seen the inauguration of a movement likely, if well 
carried on, to render valuable services to the science. The celebrated 
band whose organization in the early years of the present century 
resulted in the discovery of the planetoids, Pallas, Juno, and Vesta, 
may be said to have paved the way for the new institution we have now 
to report upon, and there is no reason to doubt that the results in the 
present case will be equally, if not still more satisfactory, " The 
Astronomical Society of Germany," modelled in some respects on oiu" 
own, is distinguished therefrom by including in its programme a scheme 
for united work which appears very promising. It is well known that 
there are certain classes of research demanding for their proper de- 
velopment more time and attention than a single observatory, much 
less a single observer, can possibly be expected to afford — variable 
stars and comet sweeping are two noticeable examples. By a well- 
adjusted subdivision of labour amongst several persons, each under- 
taking a prescribed department or area of the heavens, as the case may 
be, it is obvious that results of extreme magnitude and importance 
may be arrived at. A copy of the prospectus has been forwarded to 
us from Germany : from it we learn that Leipzic will be the general 
head-quarters, and that German will be the ofiicial language for the 
transaction of business, though the Society will be open to all nation- 
alities and all languages. Both the entrance fee and annual subscrip- 
tion are fixed at five thalers (15«.), a very moderate siun by the side of 

18G4.1 Astronomy. 105 

the three guineas and two guineas which our own Society charges for 
very inailc(][uate rotimis. Amongst the officers ehjcted at tlie Heidel- 
berg foundation meeting, are Zech of Tiibingen (President), Argelander, 
O. Struvc, Bruhns, Schonfeld, &c. The secretary is Forster, of the 
Eoyal Observatory, Berlin, well known as an expert calculator. 

In reviewing the progress of Astronomy diuing the last six months, 
we shall scarcely do wrong in assigning a foremost i)lace to some re- 
marks on the belief which has recently taken hold ui)on the minds of 
leading men, that it is now necessary to adojit some revised estimate 
of the sun's distance from the earth. The precise amoimt of tlie re- 
duction to be made in the hitherto-received value is open to future 
determination, but concerning the general fact that some correction is 
requisite there seems to be no difference of oj)inion. The fii'st really 
public announcement at any considerable length is due to Mr. Hincl, 
who contributed a very lucid memoir on the subject to ' The Times ' in 
the month of September last. For our present purj)ose no more is re- 
quisite than to give a brief recapitulation of the matter in Mr. Hind's 
own words, followed by a few general remarks on two of his heads 
which appear to deserve comment. He thus smns up :— " A diminu- 
tion in the measm'e of the sim's distance now adopted is implied by — 
1st, the theory of the moon as regards the parallactic equation, agreeably 
to the researches of Professor Hansen and the Astronomer Eoyal ; 2nd, 
the limar equation in the theory of the earth, newly investigated by 
M. Le Verrier ; 3rd, the excess in the motion of the node of the orbit 
of Venus beyond what can be due to the received value of the planetary 
masses ; 4th, the similar excess in the motion of the perihelion of 
Mars, also detected within the past few years by the same mathematician ; 
5th, the experiments of M. Foucault on the velocity of light ; and 6th, 
the results of observations of Mars when near the earth about the 
ojiposition of 1862." 

To Encke we owe the best discussion of the observations of the 
transit of Venus in 1769 : he determined the value of the sun's paral- 
lax to be 8"-5776, from which we infer the earth's mean distance from 
the sun to be 95,283,115 miles. Now, the time occupied by a ray of 
light reaching the earth from the sun is known very exactly to be 8m. 
18s., from which a velocity of about 192,000 miles per second is de- 
ducible. Foucault of Paris, however, by the optical contrivance of a 
" turning mirror," due to Professor Wheatstone, has concluded that this 
value is too great ; that it is more precisely 185,170 (English) miles. 
Assuming that Foucault is right, and all his predecessors wrong, it fol- 
lows that the solar parallax must be 8"-86. Two most singular coin- 
cidences must here be disposed of. (1) The theoretical value assigned 
by Le Verrier, irrespective of all instrumental measm'ements, and pm-ely 
on physical grounds, is 8""95 ; and (2) The discussion, by Stone of Green- 
wich, of the observations of Mars (adverted to above in Mr. Hind's 
6th point), taken by EUery at Williamsto\\Ti, Victoria, N. S. W., give 
a value of 8"'93, with a probable error of only 0"-03. Combining the 
foregoing, we find that three diftcrent observers, working in three most 
diverse ways, have all arrived at the same general result, and more than 

106 Chronicles of Science. [Jan. 

this, at actual evaluations, the extremes of wMcli differ only by the 
minute amount of 0"*09. Is it possible for us to withstand the con- 
clusion that our estimations so long adhered to must sooner or later 
be materially " reconstructed," and as a consequence, that those por- 
tions of oiu" treatises involving this distance must be unceremoniously 
pulled to pieces and built up again. An original calculation of the 
mean distance of the earth from the sun, amended according to Stone 
and Ellery's value of the parallax, makes it 91,512,649 miles.* 

Chiefly in consequence of the larger major j)lanets being, during 
the past autumn, unfavourably placed for observation, we have little to 
report in the department of planetary astronomy ; the inferior con- 
junction of Venus on Sept. 28, is the only phenomenon of importance 
which has happened, and none of the observations which have as yet 
come under our notice contain any features calling for special remark. 

The already very long list of minor planets has received one 
addition due to the labours of Mr. Watson, director, in succession 
to Brunnow, of the Observatory of Ann Arbor, Michigan, F.S.A. 
This planet, which takes the ordinal number of 79, was found 
on Sept. 14, shining as a star of the tenth magnitude. The fol- 
lowing provisional elements have been determined by M. AUe, of 
Prague, f 

Epoch 1863, Oct. 4-0, Berlin M. T. 

Mean Longitude . . . . = 2?3 54-50 
Lono;itude of Perihelion . . = 44 56 24'24\ T^r^^r, -d icaq 
Ascending Node ....=. 206 30 58-27 / ^^^^ ^^1" ^^^^ 
Inclination of Orbit . . . := 4 42 39-20 

= 11 13 9-8 wherefore 

^ Eccentricity = 0-194563 

Log. Mean Distance . . . = 0-3910464 
Mean Daily Motion . . . = 919"-2568 
The new planet revolves round the sun in an orbit slightly larger 
than Parthenope's. It has not yet received a name. 

On Nov. 13, M. Schmidt of Athens discovered another, the 80th, 
in the constellation Taurus. It shone then as a star of the tenth 
magnitude, but fell rapidly more than a whole magnitude in less than 
a week from that time. 

On October 9 a watchmaker at Leipzic, surnamed Backer, had the 
good fortune to discover a small telescope comet, which Tempel of 
Marseilles found independently five days later. 
The following elements are by M. Romberg : — 

Perihelion Passage . . . = 1863, Dec. 27-70863 G. M. T. 

O t II 

Longitude of Perihelion . . = 180 17 53-4 1 Apparent Eq. 

Longitude of Ascending Node. = 104 51 28-8) Oct. 14-5 

Inclination of Orbit . . . = 82 16 29-4 

Perihelion Distance . . . = 1-3550 

Heliocentric Motion ... - Dhect. 
* It should be remarked that parallactic observations of Mars are not gene- 
rally regarded as susceptible of a higli degree of accuracy, and that tiierefore we 
shall liave to wait for tlie next transit of Venus (in 1874) to become well acquainted 
with the precise extent of the required diminution of distance, 
t ' Astronomische Nachrichten,' November 13, 1863. 

18G4.] Astronomy. 107 

These elements bear considerable resemblance to those of Comet ii. 
1818. Hereafter it will bo reasonable to inquire whether tlie two 
bodies are identical, thus adding another 'periodic' comet to our stock 
of knowledge. It may be added that these elements are not wliully 
dissimilar to those of Comets i. of 1840 and iii. of 18G0 ; neither 
should the singuhir fact be passed over that the three first elements 
dilier but 11 ', 12', and 3^ from the corresponding ones of the Comet i. 
of 18G3. 

M. Tempel was worthily rewarded, on Nov. 4, for the industry he 
so imtiringly displays, by discovering another comet, one visible to the 
naked eye, and therefore more than usually interesting. 

The following elements are also by M. Romberg : — 

Perihelion Passage . . . . = 1863, Nov. 9-49923 

Longitude of Perihelion 

= 94 46 


Longitude of Ascending Node 

= 97 31 


Inclination of Orbit 

= 78 6 


Perihelion Distance . . . 

= 0-70656 

Heliocentric Motion . . 


At the time of its discovery this comet was as bright as a star of the 
4th magnitude, and it had a short tail. As its perihelion passage pre- 
ceded that of Backer's comet it becomes Comet iv. of 18G3, the latter 
being Comet v., inverting the order of discovery. Both are still visible. 

Sidereal astronomy is a branch of the science which, from its very 
nature, makes progress less rai)idly than most others. Labourers are 
here fewer, because, in many imi^ortant respects, instruments equal to 
the work are somewhat scarce. Mr. Lassell, who is diligently engaged 
in scrutinizing the heavens through the fine atmosphere of Malta, has 
communicated to the Royal Society an interesting note on the well- 
known planetary nebula in Aquarius (1 ]^ IV. R. A. 20h. 56m. ; S 11° 
56' S.), in which the following passages occur : — " With comparatively 
low powers it appears at first sight as a vividly light-blue elliptic 
nebula, with a slight prolongation of the nebula, or a very faint star 
at or near the ends of the transverse axis." Under high powers and 
the most favourable circumstances, " I have discerned within the ne- 
bula a brilliant elliptic ring extremely well defined, and apparently 
having no connection with the surrounding nebula, which indeed has 
the appearance of a gaseous or gauze-like envelope, scarcely interfer- 
ing with the sharpness of the ring, and only diminishing somewhat its 

To the same Society, on Nov. 19, Sir John Herschel presented a 
work, which will, we think, equal any of his former efforts. We allude 
to a gigantic catalogue of all the known nebulae, 5,063 in number, 
compiled from every available source. Sir John's own catalogue of 
1833 furnishes 2,307 objects, his Cape observations 1,713 more, the 
residue being obtained from miscellaneous sources. The epoch chosen 
is 1860, and the information, arranged in twelve columns, fui-nishes, 
amongst other things, constants for reduction and copious synonyms. 
The catalogue is at present only in manuscript, but we trust that no 
more time than is absolutely necessary will elapse before this valuable 

108 Chronicles of Science. [Jan. 

result of Sir Jolin Herscliel's indefatigable researcli is ijublislied to 
the world. 

Stellar parallax, in the hands of M. Kruger of Bonn, has yielded 
results for the stars 21,258 of Lalande's Catalogue, and 17,415 of 
Oltzen's Zones. To the former he assigns a parallax of 0"-260, with 
a probable error of + 0"-02, and to the latter a parallax of 0"-247, 
with a probable error of 0"*021. From these determinations we must 
infer that these two stars, both telescopic, are nearer to us than either 
Capella, Polaris, Arctui'us, or Sirius. 

Of the various fields of active work open to amateur astronomers, 
none are so promising as observations on variable stars. The task is 
a hard one, and requires unquestionably great patience and perseverance, 
but to those endued with these gifts a fine future is open. The number 
of known variables is steadily increasing, and now exceeds one hundred, 
to which the indefatigable Pogson of Madras has added another 
member within the last few months. He designates it U. Scorpii, and its 
place for 1860 is E.A. 16h. 14m. 26-6s., (J 17° 33' 86" S. It is Hkely 
to prove an object of particular interest, having been found by the dis- 
coverer to pass through three entire magnitudes in little more than 
one month, a rapidity of change only known to be equalled by three 
other stars. 

Astronomical photography, in the able hands of Mr. De La Rue and 
the Kew observers, is making steady progress, but nothing has occurred 
during the period over which our smwey extends, calling for particular 

Solar photometry has recently received important develoj)ment in 
America under the ingenious manipulation of Mr. Alvan Clarke, the 
well-known optician. A well of adequate depth not being at his dis- 
posal, he made use of a horizontal gallery 230 feet long, through which 
the sun's rays, on a very clear bright day, were made to pass by the 
agency of a prism and mirror to obtain the required reflection. He 
employed a lens j^ of an inch focal length, and thus reduced the sun's 
diameter 93,840 times, when it presented a brilliancy " which was 
estimated at scarcely equal to x Lyrfe." Mr. Clarke considers that ten 
per cent, loss will be a reasonable allowance for the reflections ; and 
weighing some comparisons of a LyrsB without the lens, he gives it as 
the final result that the sun would have to be removed 103,224 times 
its present distance, for it to appear no brighter than the star referred to. 

No review of this character can be complete without a chronicle of 
literary intelligence, and we shall therefore glance cursorily at the 
performances of 1863 and the promises of 1864, which can scarcely 
fail to be useful and interesting. An important reprint has been issued 
in France — a work by the celebrated astronomical king, Alj)honso X, 
of Castile. It is divided into sixteen parts, commencing v/ith a cata- 
logue of the fixed stars. The royal author then treats of the aj)paratus 
and instruments necessary for observing the stars and csfrellas movediros, 
or planets. Speaking of the constellations, he says of Ursa Major : — 
" Some astronomers have taken it for a wain with its pole, others say 
that it has the form of an animal which might as well be a lion, a 

1864.] Astrnnomy. 109 

wolf, 01- a (log, as a male or female bear. Here then are heavenly 
aninuils inhabiting tliat part of the sky where this constolhition is to 
be founrl, and recognized by ancient astronomers because they saw four 
stars in a square, and three occu])ying a right lino. Tliey must have 
been endued with a better eyesight than ours, and the sky must have 
been very clear. Since they say it is a she-bear, let it be one. They 
were very lucky in being able to distinguish it." King Alphonso was 
evidently much in advance of his age to sjjeak thus slightingly of jjopu- 
lar tradition ; his work is a worthy momnnent of his energy and genius. 
Mr. J, K. Hind has brought out a third edition of his ' Introduc- 
tion to Astronomy,' which is decidedly the best arranged elementary 
manual in the English or any other language. A new catalogue of 
standard stars has been issued from the Harvard College Observatory, 
Cambridge, U.S.A. It is a compilation of right ascensions from the 
best catalogues, of 152 stars, with cojnous constants for reduction, 
creditably arranged by Mr. Truman Ileiuy Safford. The year 1863 
has, amongst other events, witnessed the successful starting of what is, 
as far as we have been able to ascertain, the first purely astronomical 
periodical ever issued in England. The ' Astronomical Register ' 
occupies a field hitherto a wide waste, and deserves to find a place on 
every astronomer's table. The Eev. E. Main, Eadcliffe observer at 
Oxford, has recently published a ' College Manual of Physical Astro- 
nomy,' designed for the use of students. After a long delay, rendered 
necessary by the discovery of certain collateral errors, the second 
portion of ' Bessel's Zones ' has just been published in a handsome 
volume, at St. Petersbm-g. It will be recollected that Bessel observed 
a large number of stars lying between 1^° S. and 45° N., down to the 
ninth magnitude inclusive ; his observations having been left unre- 
duced, the task was imdertaken by the St. Petersbm-g Academy of 
Sciences, which entrusted the work to the hands of M. Weisse. The 
first portion, comprising 31,085 stars, lying within 15° on either side of 
the equator, was given to the world in 1846 ; but the second, containing 
31,445 stars, lying in a zone extending 30° northwards of the parallel 
of 15°, for reasons above stated, did not appear till 1863. 

At the head of literary announcements imdoubtedly we must place 
a new edition of Admiral W. H. Smyth's world-renowned ' Cycle of 
Celestial Objects.' This book, long out of print, being constantly asked 
for, its venerable and gallant aiithor decided some time since to reissue 
it with such alterations and additions as twenty years made requisite. 
The new edition is now in progress, the more laborious part of it 
having been undertaken by the Admiral's accomplished son-in-law, 
Mr. Isaac Flitcher, of Tarn Bank, Workington. 

Though Mr. Carrington has abandoned the observatory for the 
brewery, his important Eedhill results will 'nevertheless be made avail- 
able, — so far at least as regards his solar-spot observations, which are 
now in a forward state for publication. 

The Obituary of 1863 happily contains no more leading names 
than Edward Josiah Cooper of Marla-ee, Esq., and ex-M.P. for the 
county of Sligo ; Virgilio Trettenero of Padua ; J. W. H. Lehman of 
Gottingcu ; and M. Weisse of Cracow. 

110 Chronicles of Science. [Jau, 


The attention of the French government has been called to some ex- 
periments of M. Hooibrenk, a native of Holland, for obtaining, by 
artificial fecundation, a more abundant crop of cereals, vines, and fruit 
trees. These experiments have been carried on at Sillery, near Eheims, 
on the property of M. Jacquesson, the well-known wine-grower. They 
are simple and inexpensive : the apparatus employed in the case of 
cereals being a cord of from 25 to 30 yards long, upon which is fastened 
a stiff woollen fringe, about ten inches in length, the hanging threads 
of which touch one another, and have small shot attached at short dis- 
tances. At the time of flowering, this apparatus is passed over the 
crop so as to brush it lightly, an operation which employs three per- 
sons, a man at either exti'emity, and a child to hold up the cord at the 
middle. The object of this operation, which has to be repeated three 
times at intervals of about two days, is to scatter the pollen, and bring 
a larger quantity of it into contact with the pistils, and thus to ensui-e 
fecundation on a lai'ger scale than is done by the ordinary operations 
of nature. The whole apparatus costs only five or six francs, and the 
labour employed is also very cheap, while the results have shown a 
vast increase in proportion. A modification of the process, as applied 
to vines and fruit trees, has also been followed by marked improve- 
ment in the crops ; and, as a consequence, two commissioners, named by 
the Minister of Agriculture, have visited the scene of the experiments 
during the past summer, and as they have been carried on simultaneously 
with the ordinary system of farming, a comparison of the results shows 
the advantages given by the " Methode Hooibrenk " as follows : — 

Jlooihrenk System. 

Old System. 



Wheat . 

... 31 

. 21 


. . . 25-5 . . 

. 16 

Barley . 

... 24 . . 

. 16 


... 17 . . 

. 12 

The Commissioners recommend a methodical examination into the 
subject, and the Emperor has decided that such an examination shall 
take place on the imperial farms of Fouilleuse and Fontainebleau. 

Dr. F. Hildebrand, of Bonn, observing that in some tropical orchids, 
cultivated in the Botanic Garden, he found no ovules in the ovarium of 
the expanded flower, and that, nevertheless, he saw the enlargement 
of the ovarium after having applied the pollen to the stigma, has been 
led to make some interesting experiments upon this curious point, 
which has not escaped the notice of previous botanists. Observations 
on thirty different species of orchids proved that in the recently ex- 
panded flowers of orchids the ovules are never fully developed, while 
in some species, indeed, even the placentae are not yet fully developed. 
After the application of pollen to the stigma, the enlargement of the 
ovarium begins, and before the pollen-tubes reach the placentaa or 

1864.] Botany and Vegetable Phyaiobgy. Ill 

oviilcs. The tubes of pollen, therefore, have no direct influence upon 
the original development of the ovulus, but theyjact fir8t on llie enlarge- 
ment of the ovarium, and by this enlargement indirectly on the (ovules. 
Dr. Hildebrand deduces from all his experiments that in the formation 
of the fruit of orchids, the pollen acts in two different ways : on the 
one hand it effects the enlargement of the ovarium, and the develop- 
ment of the imperfect ovules without the pollen tubes directly touch- 
ing the ovules ; on the other hand it impregnates the ovules, directly 
touching the embryo-sac, and determining the development of one 
germinal corpuscle into an embryo. This independent action of the 
pollen upon the ovules is probably not peculiar to orchids, although it 
has thus been noticed in that family, but the remarkable facts lately 
pointed out by Darwin in his ' Fertilization of Orchids,' as well as 
those just referred to, bear singular testimony to the acumen of the 
late Robert Brown, who foresaw that a patient examination of the 
structure and action of the remarkable sexual organs of this family 
would be more likely than any other means to elucidate the difficult 
subject of generation in Phanerogamic plants. 

A remarkable confirmation of Mr. Darwin's views of the fertiliza- 
tion of orchids by insects is afforded by a South African species {Disa 
grandijlora), described in the recently issued Linntean Journal. None 
of these South African species have hitherto been examined in relation 
to their manner of fertilization. In Disa the labellum is greatly 
reduced in size, and the posterior sepal large, forming a sjnu' containing 
nectar. The nectary thus stands behind the stigma and jjollen masses, 
in a directly opposite position to that which it occupies in other orchids. 
Nevertheless, fertilization is effected by insects, by a very slight change 
in the form of the two upper petals, and in the position of the viscid 
discs of the pollen masses, which are widely removed from each other, 
and face outwards from the labellimi towards the margin of the cohimn. 
The upper sepal and two upper petals enclose the column, so that 
insects, to reach the nectar, are compelled to aj^proach the flower in 
front ; but as the column stands in the way of the nectary, insects must 
push their proboscis or head on either side of it, in order to reach the 
nectar. In Disa the caudicles of the pollinia do not undergo the 
movement of depression, as described by Mr. Darwin, in most British 
orchids, but the caudicles are naturally crooked. In this plant there- 
fore, notwithstanding the remarkable difference in the position of the 
nectary, every part of the flower, by the aid of very slight modifica- 
tions, has become so neatly co-ordinated to ensure fertilization thi-ough 
the agency of insects.* 

In connection with the subject of fertilizing processes, a remark- 
able arrangement has been noticed, by F. Cohn of Breslau, in thistles. 
The five anthers cohere, forming a tube. At the time of flowering 
this tube is shut in at the top, enclosing the style. About this period 

* It may be mentioned, in connection with the interest excited by orchidaceous 
plants of late, that M. F. G. Beer has lately published an elaborate work at Vienna, 
'On the Morphology and Biology of the Orcliidaceae ;' and some remarks by Prof. 
Asa Gray, on the Fertilization of some of tlie North American Orchids, will be 
found in 'Sdliman's Journal' for September last. 

112 Chronicles of Science. |_Jan. 

the antlier tube rises to about four millimetres above tbe extreme 
points of tbe corolla, and if the same be touched, pollen, in lumps, 
issues from the summit, the anther-tube at the same time undergoing 
a remarkable twisting. After a short interval this is repeated. The 
style gradually becomes elevated above the summits of the anther- 
tube, and by the time it projects about foiir or five millimetres beyond, 
the irritability has completely disaj)peared, having lasted at the most 
about twenty-four hours. When the styles are visible it is too late 
for instituting experiments. These phenomena are produced solely 
by the contraction of the filaments of the stamens, which on each touch 
instantly contract, and after a little, resume their former length. The 
expulsion of the pollen depends upon the anther-tube being drawn 
downwards upon the style by the contracting filaments, and then pushed 
up again. 

The subject of the functions of vascular tissue causes some difference 
of opinion among botanists, some saying that although containing air 
at most seasons, they are filled with sap in spring, while others affirm 
that when once formed they contain only air. M. Gris has applied 
Fehling's solution, which deposits a red precipitate when boiled with 
a very small quantity of glucose, thus indicating the presence of an 
essential element of the sap. On plimging for a few moments into 
such a boiling solution, thick fragments of the wood of chestnut, beech, 
poplar, labm-num, &c., at the commencement of spring, and afterwards, 
cutting thin sections for the microscope, the precipitated oxide of 
copper is found clothing the inner face of the large vessels, and form- 
ing reddish threads visible to the naked eye. The precipitate is also 
abundant in the cells of the medullary rays, whence M. Gris concludes 
that the so-called lymphatic vessels (at all events in spring) contain a 
sap either identical with, or closely analagous to, that foimd in the 
cellular elements of these stems. The spiral fibres of the reticulated, 
annular and spiro-annular, and other similar vessels of herbaceous 
plants, also present, in their interior, the red precipitate when similarly 

With regard to one class of vessels concerning which very con- 
siderable modification of oj)inion has been necessary since their first 
discovery by Schultz, viz. the laticiferous tissue, M. Lestiboudois has 
instituted a systematic series of experiments, the results of which he 
communicates from time to time to the ' Comptes rendus.' He has 
established beyond doubt the existence, in certain plants, of vessels 
containing colom'ed liquids, and that these vasa propria are not mere 
excavations in the tissue, permeated by a thread of granuliferous tissue, 
but that, though probably at a late period, a delicate wall is developed, 
which constitutes it a distinct vascular system, though not in all points 
a counterpart of that of the blood-vessels of animals ; nor do they fulfil 
precisely the same pm-pose. While not, however, regarding the contrac- 
tility of these vessels as proved, he considers that he indisputably 
makes out a circulation of the liquid contents, not regularly from one 
point to another, but in such a manner that the granules are driven 
into all the ramifications of a more or less complicated network. In 

1864,] Botany and Vegetahle Physiology. 113 

addition to the true vessels wliich contain the proper juices of plants, 
and wliicli may citlier be long rigid tubules without anastomoses, or 
thin flexuose, and branching, with frefj^uent inosculations, there aro 
certain reservoirs or utricles, and otliers in the form of intercellular 
passages (or meati), which present themselves in the form of slightly 
branching vessels, constituting now and then a sort of framework 
around cells — and some of which arc simply irregular cavities pro- 
duced by laceration. In another communication, M. Lestiboudois 
enlarges on the subject, and adds that this imperfect vascular system is 
not met with in the generality of plants, nor in all parts of the plant 
in which they occm- — nor, thcrefoie, is the laticiferous juice an essen- 
tial element in the growth of plants. M. Lestiboudois refuses to 
recognize two categories of colom-ed juices, essentially differing from 
one another, — the one special, scented, and excrementitial, and the 
other vital and alimentary ; and fm-ther, is of opinion that the terms 
latex and laticiferous vessels should be abolished, because they per- 
petuate an erroneous idea, by assigning to plants those centralized 
fimctions which they do not really possess, but which are peculiar to 

It is always an interesting matter to receive confirmation of 
the natm-al affinities of structure in groups which have already, 
from a general community of characters, been arranged by botanists 
in what are termed natural orders ; and the researches of Mr. 
Gulliver among the minute crystals called raphides existing among 
the tissues of some plants tend to this result. Mr. Gulliver has 
distinguished the acicular crystals (or true raphides) from another 
class of crystals which occm* among Phanerogamia, commonly in 
a more or less globular congeries, either naked or within a cell, and 
which he proposes to call Splicer aphides. The distribution of this 
latter class of crystals appears to be especially characteristic of the 
Caryoiihyllacete, Geraniaceae, Paronychiacefe, Lythraca?, Saxifi-agefe, 
and Urticacefe, so that he has never failed to find them in a single spe- 
cies of these orders. But inasmuch as he fm'ther believes that few, if 
any, orders could be named in which Sphferaphides do not exist, it is 
questionable how far they might be available as botanical characters. 
With true raphidian tissue, however, the case is different ; they occur 
so regularly and plentifully in some plants, and so sparingly or not at 
all in others, that they aff'ord good characters by which certain orders 
may be readily distinguished fi'om their allies of other orders. Thus 
if we confine the word raphides to the needlelike crystals commonly 
occm-riug in bundles, it may be the expression of a more universal 
diagnosis between such orders as the Onagracefe and their next allies 
(and yet no less simple and siu'e), than any single character hitherto 
employed ; and we could determine the affinities and contrasts of 
certain plants by a method at once easy and practical, and in the ab- 
sence of those parts heretofore exclusively used for the descriptive 
distinctions. Mr. Gulliver speaks in a later communication thus 
strongly : — " No other single diagnosis for the orders in question is so 
simple, fundamental, and universal as this ; and the orders to which 

VOL. I. I 

114 Chronicles of Science. [Jan. 

it applies should bo designated rapMs hearing or rapliidiferous. 
Besides Onagraceae, DioscoraceEe, Aracese, and Asparagaceae are 
spoken of as truly raphidiferous orders. 

M. B. Corenwinder has been making a series of observations upon 
the expiration of leaves by day and night. He finds that the amount 
of carbonic acid exhaled at night varies with the temperature and 
ceases at zero ; nor is the property of absorbing carbonic acid and 
again decomposing it found in very young leaves and buds. Adult 
leaves, however, never exhale carbonic acid in the open air, and when 
they receive a full supply of light from all parts. The question 
whether leaves coloured red, brown, or purple, possess the same pro- 
perties as green leaves, has also occupied his attention, and he asserts 
that they differ in nothing from green plants in regard to the pro- 
perty of absorbing carbonic acid imder the influence of light, and ex- 
haling it in darkness. It is therefore inexact to say, in an absolute 
manner, that it is by their green parts that leaves decompose carbonic 
acid under the influence of sunlight. 

The abundance of minute organisms found at deep-sea bottoms in 
the Atlantic and elsewhere, and the remarkable facts disclosed by Dr. 
Wallich's deep-sea soundings in the expedition of Capt. M'Clintock, 
gave some colom* to the idea that the vegetable Diatomaceae exist in a 
living state at great depths, and Dr. Stimpson, an energetic young 
naturalist connected with the Smithsonian Institution at Washington, 
who examined the specimens taken at the depth of 2,700 fathoms, in 
latitude 46 N. and longitude 168 E., by Lieutenant Brooke, found 
some startling appearances. The armature consisted of three quills, 
each about three inches in length, fastened together, and placed in such 
a position that, when the lead struck the bottom, the quills would be 
forced perpendicularly into it, and thus become filled with mud from 
a stratum a few inches below the general sui'face of the sea-bottom. 
One of these quills, cut in two in the middle, contained Diatoms, appa- 
rently Coscinodisci, which appeared to Dr. Stimj)son to be undoubt- 
edly living, judging from their fresh appearance and the coloiu^s of 
their internal cell-contents. Dr. Wallich, however, argues that 
although the soft parts are retained in specimens obtained from ex- 
treme depths, they differ materially both in aspect and quality from 
those of Diatoms known to be living. Such Diatoms never present 
a trace of locomotion, which is so tenaciously retained by Diatoms 
under all other circumstances. Moreover, the Coscinodisci, which 
constitute the largest proportion of Diatoms foimd in deep-sea depo- 
sits, are essentially inhabitants of shoal water. They do not live im- 
bedded in mud, but the upper waters^ teem with their ffustules. Dr. 
Wallich therefore inclines to answer the question decidedly in the 

1864.] Chemistry. 115 


In commencing the Chronicles of the progress of Science for the 
last few months, it becomes necessary to exercise considerable care 
in the choice of subjects to bo mentioned, so as to avoid on tlie one 
hand the omission of anything likely to interest a large section of 
our readers, and on the other hand to keep our pages from being 
overbm'dened with a mass of facts, important, no doubt, to the student 
of one special science, but of no interest to those outside the circle. 
This precaution is especially necessary in a science like Chemistry, 
in which not only does every month bring forth new discoveries, but 
every week — nay, every day is marked by some valuable fact. Our 
readers must not therefore expect to find every fact, even those most 
important, recorded in these chapters, but it will at the same time be 
om- endeavour so to select our topics as to constitute these pages a 
truthful mirror of the general progress of Science. 

There have been few periods more fruitful in important chemical 
discoveries than that comprised within the last few months. Two new 
metals have been annoimced as belonging to the ali'eady niunerous 
family of elementary bodies, one of which has been literally brought 
to light by spectrum analysis — that powerful analytical process which 
has ali-eady given us ctesium, rubidimn, and thallium. The new arrival 
is due to the labom-s of two German chemists, F. Reich and T. W. 
Richter.* They were examining some impm-e chloride of zinc obtained 
fi"om two Freyberg ores, in the expectation of finding thalliiun present. 
In the spectroscope no green line was seen, but the authors remarked 
an indigo blue line, which was till then unknown. Upon isolating 
the conjectm-al substance in the form of chloride, they foimd that 
it gave this blue line, so brilliantly sharp and persistent, that they 
at once came to the conclusion that it belonged to a hitherto unrecog- 
nized metal, to which they accordingly gave the name indium. In 
their memoir the authors give the characteristic properties of the new 
metal, which aj)pears somewhat to resemble zinc, and describe several 
of its compounds. The discovery has been confirmed by other chemists 
of eminence, and there now appears to be no doubt whatever as to its 
accm-acy. The same cannot be said respecting the new metal claimed 
by M. J. F. Bahr.f In the analysis of a highly compKcated mineral, 
fi'om the island of Rousholn, containing nearly all the metals of the 
aluminium group, the author obtained about 1 per cent, of what he 
supposed was a new addition to this numerous family. He pro- 
poses for it the name of wasium. The existence of wasium as a 
simple body has been since disputed by M. Nickles, | who asserts it to 
be a mixtui'e of the known bodies yttrium, didymium, and terbium. 

* ' Journal fiir pi-aktische Chemie,' bd. Ixsxis. p. 441. 
t ' Annalen der Pbysik uud Clieinie,' vol. cxix. p. 572. 
% ' Comptes Reudus,' Nov. 2. 


116 Chronicles of Science. [Jan. 

Tte already known elementary bodies are being gradually brougbt 
within tbe domain of spectrum analysis. Pbospborus, which has been 
long known to communicate, under some circumstances, a green colour 
to flame, has been shown by MM. Christofle and Beilstein * to possess a 
very definite spectrum, consisting of three distinct green lines. This 
new test is likely to be of considerable use, as, by its means, this dele- 
terious body has been shown to exist in many samples of good com- 
mercial iron, which were supposed to be free from this impurity. 

Our knowledge of the recently discovered element, caesium, has been 
greatly enlarged by its discoverer Bunsen.f For the original isolation 
of this interesting alkali, nearly 100,000 lbs. of the mineral water of 
Diii'kheim were evaporated down, yielding, however, only 30 to 40 
grains. He has since determined the atomic weight to the metal with 
great accuracy upon a somewhat larger quantity, and has obtained 
the same number as those given by Messrs. Johnson and Allen, J 
namely 133. 

M. Eose has announced a no less important discovery than that of 
an entirely new series of metallic oxides. § In his memoir he pro- 
poses a new nomenclatm'e which, were it generally adopted, would be 
of great convenience to chemists. The new series, which he has dis- 
covered, consists of 1 of metal with i of oxygen, and this he proposes 
to call quadrantoxide ; the compound of 1 of metal with ^ of oxygen, 
variously named the suboxide or the protoxide, he proposes to call 
semioxide ; the compoimd of equal atoms of metal and oxygen he calls 
isoxide ; the compoimd of 1 of metal to 1^ of oxygen retains its name, 
sesquioxide ; whilst the ordinary binoxide is called the diploxide. 
Only one quadrantoxide has as yet been formed and analysed, but 
reasons are given for supposing that the suboxide of silver is really 
the quadrantoxide. and it is very probable that quadrantichlorides 
of the alkali metals are also known. As might be expected from their 
composition, these new oxides are difficult to prepare, and are easily 

The mysterious body ozone, respecting which so much has been 
done but so little is known, is still occupying the attention of chemists. 
Schonbein has already shown that this body is formed when evapora- 
tion takes place, and M. Morin |1 considers that the good effects ob- 
served when water is artificially evaj)orated dm-ing the ventilation of 
rooms, may be due to the formation of a certain quantity of ozonized 
oxygen. English writers on Ventilation always advocate the intro- 
duction of a certain amoimt of moistm-e into the air supplied to inha- 
bited places, and this has been well carried out in the ventilation of 
the Houses of Parliament. 

Few chemical manufactures have been developed so much of late 
years as that of the barium compounds, and its prospective applications 
are most niunerous and important, although at the present day their 

* ' Oomptes Eendus.' t ' PWl. Mag.,' vol. xxvi. p. 241, 

X * Silliman's Journal,' vol. xxxv. p. 94. § ' Poggendorff 's Annalen.' 

II ' Comptes Rendus.' 

18 64.] Chemistry. 117 

use seems to bo confined to the manufacture of green fire. M. Kuhl- 
mann has lately entered very largely into the manufacture of different 
compounds of barium, with a view to their commercial introduction. 
The absorj^tion of oxygen from the air by red-hot baryta, and its sub- 
sequent release at a higher temjierature, in the form of ijure gas, could 
bo made of the greatest importance to metallurgical and furnaco 
chemistry. A cheap method of making peroxide of barium would 
place us in possession of the valuable 2)eroxide of hydrogen, which 
would bo of incalculable use as a disinfectant, and also in many manu- 
facturing processes. To the industrial chemist cheap caustic baryta 
would entirely revolutionize the alkali manufacture, whilst for many 
purposes it would suj)ersede the ordinary alkalies. In the manufac- 
ture of crystal-glass, lead, the most costly ingredient, could be even 
now economically reidaced by a barium compound, provided a few 
preliminary difficulties were overcome. Nitrate of baryta can also be 
economically employed in the preparation of blasting powder ; tho 
chromates of baryta can in many cases replace the more costly chro- 
matcs of potash, and the same may be said of the ferrocyanides, all of 
which are largely used in dyeing. These are some of the more imj^ortant 
applications of this earth, but an immense number of minor uses has 
also been j)roposed, and there is little doubt that it will shortly become 
as valuable in industrial as it already is in analytical chemistry. 

The extraordinary prolificness of some organic chemists in the 
discovery of new bases, will cease to be surprising after the perusal of 
a paper by Mr. Broughton,* in which it is showTi that the known 
general processes for their formation are competent to produce several 
sextillions of new ammonias. As most, if not all, of these compounds 
only require for their production certain known agents to be placed in 
contact, it is evident that chemists need not debar themselves from the 
title of original discoverers for lack of virgin soil on which to work. 

The value of the element bromine in the arts and manufactures is 
daily increasing, and were its price reduced, its importance in many 
industrial operations can scarcely be over-estimated. Hitherto the 
only source has been sea-water, where it exists in the form of bromide 
of magnesium, one part of this salt being dissolved in 100,000 parts 
of water. Eecent experiments, by M. Koux,| show that the water of 
the Dead Sea is more than 100 times richer in bromine than ordinary 
sea-water. Ali'eady we hear of proposals for the establishment of a 
factory near the Dead Sea, for the separation of this element. It is 
much to be desired that this inexhaustible store of so valuable an agent 
should be utilized. 

Perhaps the most important point to determine in the analysis of a 
drinking water is the presence of nitric acid, as this body is so closely 
connected with putrescent organic matter. Hitherto, however, few 
chemists take note of it, owing, doubtless, to the difficidties which 
beset its detection when very dilute. Mr. R. KestingsJ has now 

* ' Chemical News, ' vol. viii. p. 245. 
t ' Comptes Rendus,' vol. Ivii. No. 14. 
J ' Amialen der Chem. und Pharm.' 

118 Chronicles of Science. [Jan. 

bIiowh that tlie alkaloid brucine is a most delicate test for nitric acid, 
being coloured rose-red by water, containing only tbe 100,000tli part. 
It is to be hoped that more attention will in future be paid to the 
varying proportions of this acid in potable water, and that the warn- 
ings given by its presence will not be disregarded. 

The subject of pure water for household purposes is so important 
that we again recm* to it, to notice an invention of Dr. H, Schwartz, 
which appears to remedy perfectly the effects of the employment of 
lead pipes and cisterns. He converts the inner sm-face of the metal 
into an insoluble sulphide by boiling in it a solution of sulphur in 
soda. The result is that the water is perfectly kept from contact with 
the metal, and will be as free from contamination as if it had been 
passed through a glass pij)e. 

Some curious results of the inhalation of the vapour of glonoine 
(an oil obtained by the action of nitric acid on glycerine) have been 
given by Mr. Merrick.* It has long been known that this body pro- 
duces violent headache, but these experiments show that it is a most 
powerful agent in its physiological action. In one case the fortieth 
part of a drop dissolved in sj)irit was swallowed on a piece of sugar. 
In two minutes the pulse had risen considerably, being accompanied 
with a violent headache. This continiaed for nearly half-an-hour, 
when the symptoms passed off. At another time, when a quantity of 
vapom* was accidentally inhaled, the headache became almost intolerable, 
and was accompanied by a good deal of faintness and exhaustion, in- 
tolerance of light, and a feeling of great general distress and alarm. 
The violent toxical effects show that glonoine is a powerful poison, 
and, like most agents of this kind, wiU doubtless be employed in 

The application of gun-cotton as a substitute for gunpowder in 
warfare has occuj^ied the attention of a committee of scientific men 
for some time past. General Von Lenk, of the Imperial Austrian 
Artillery, has invented a system of prej)aration by which gun-cotton 
has been made practically available for warlike piu-poses. The 
committee have had the advantage of personal communication with 
the General, and in the report, which will shortly be issued, an ab- 
stract of which having been communicated to the British Association at 
Newcastle, we are promised a vast amount of information of the most 
important character. General Von Lenk has shown that perfect gun- 
cotton is a definite chemical compound ; he has given accurate pro- 
cesses for its manufacture, and for the removal of all extraneous matter 
and traces of free acid. As thus prepared, it is no longer liable to 
spontaneous combustion, it can be stored for any length of time with- 
out deterioration, it is not impaired by damp, and may be immersed in 
water without injmy, its original qualities returning unchanged when 
allowed to dry in the air. These are valuable properties, and when 
we add to them the absence of smoke, the entire freedom from fold- 
ing, the inuocuous character of the products of combustion in com- 

* ' Sillimau's Journal,' vol. xxxvi. No. 107. 

1804.] Geology and Palaeontology. 119 

pai-ison with those of gunpowder, and the far inferior heat imparted to 
the gun itself, it will be seen that the advantages attending the employ- 
ment of gun-cotton, are so many and so important as to call impera- 
tively for the fullest investigation. 

From gim-eottou to armoui'-iilated ships is a natural transition in 
these warlike days. Science seems to be at fault on tho subject of the 
preservation of iron plates from oxidation and fouling. One of tho 
best i)rocesses, that has yet come imder om' notice, is duo to Messrs. 
Johnson and Calvert. They propose to coat the iron with a thin layer 
of metallic zinc, as in the ordinary process of galvanizing. Their 
results prove that the film of zinc exercises a great protective power 
against the corrosive action of sea-water ; upwards of a year's ex- 
posm-e showing that four or five times as much corrosion took place in 
the case of uncoatcd as with galvanized iron plates. Whether galva- 
nizing would prevent fouling, remains to be seen ; we suspect it would 
rather aggravate this evil. 


Theee is perhaps more difficulty in describing the periodical progress 
of Geology, than there is in recording that of any other science. 
The exactitude of the advance is less decided, the views set forth more 
speculative, and the facts given more open to objection or discussion, 
than is the case in any other department of intellectual investigation. 
In Chemistry, the discovery of an element or of some previously un- 
known compoimd, gives a fixed and tangible point from which to go 
onward to fm-ther knowledge. Every step is a permanent score in tho 
continuous tally. So the discovery of a comet or a planet, or a nebula, 
or more exact measiu'ements of angles, or of distances, or the detection 
of errors of observation, or calculations or the revelations of increased 
telescopic powers, all' yield for Astronomy deiinite and incontrovertible 
results, and it is only in the special sphere of absolutely speculative 
Astronomy, that there is any uncertainty whatever. So, too, in Botany, 
a new flower, or a flora of some previously unnoticed region, is 
so much substantially added to the previous knowledge, so much gain 
which can be appreciated and recorded. But in Geology, we have to 
deal with the rags and shreds of former ages and former beings, 
nothing whole or entire, — every relic has to be dug out of the debris 
and ruins, which we have, as it were, first to clear away before we can 
get a glimpse of any treasm-es remaining beneath, and when we find 
these they are damaged and mostly broken fr-agments which we have 
to join and fit, and put together, to get, in the best way we can, some 
general notion of what they originally were. Thus it is a new geo- 
logical idea gets started, and is discussed, opposed, supported, until 
finally substantiated or disproved ; in short, it is only after a contest 
that, generally speaking, any progress in this science is admitted. In 

120 Chronicles of Science. [Jars. 

a quarterly summary of the nature of the present article, there must 
necessarily therefore be, as a rule, less definiteness and more hesitation 
and uncertainty than one would wish, but notwithstanding this in- 
herent difficulty in the task, it is perfectly possible to give a concise 
and clear account of what is new and what is changing ; but it must be 
more or less the newness of theories as well as of facts, bearing always 
in mind that geological facts are first provisionally accepted on the 
reliability of the observer, and are often open not only to questioning 
but to reversal. Thus for many years the older crystalline or meta- 
morphic rocks were regarded as owing their characteristic structure 
to their contact with other heated or so-called igneous rocks, — such as 
gi'anite was supposed originally to have been, constituting the lower 
zone at least of the crust of the planet we inhabit. 

For some time past, some of our most acute and practical geolo- 
gists have more than doubted the old doctrines, and oiu' own Sorby, 
by detecting the existence of steam-bubble cavities in granite, decisively 
proved that dry heat had not been the cause of its crystalline change. 
Dr. Eubidge, who has done so much good geological work at the Cape 
of Good Hope, also years before threw doubts on the heat-origin of the 
changes exhibited by the metamorphic rocks, by stating the occur- 
rence, in the district of Port Elizabeth, of intercalated metamorphosed 
strata with unchanged sedimentary beds above and below them. Such 
examples have since been from time to time not unfrequently timidly 
recorded, but they are now being more boldly noticed. Dr. Hitchcock, 
very lately speaking of the granites of Maine, in the Northern States 
of America, regarded the old theory that granite was once melted 
matter thrust into every crack of the overlying strata as erroneous, 
and substitutes the aqueo-igneous explanation of a plasticity of the 
original materials by means of steam, the primal structm-e of the rock 
bfting thus obliterated, and a new crystalline condition induced. He 
thinks that granite may thus have been formed out of schists, and these 
originally from shales and sandstones, and contends that it is " only 
an example of metamorphism carried to its utmost limit — carried far 
enough to obliterate all traces of stratification, foliation, and lamina- 
tion." Observation, he fm'ther claims, shows that granite does not 
always constitute the axes of moimtains, but that it lies between strata, 
and instead of having been the agent by which they have been lifted 
up, it has partaken of the general movements which have resulted from 
general causes. In York and Oxford counties, in Cumberland, and 
Franklin, he notices the intermixtm^e of granite with bands of sedi- 
mentary strata, and constantly speaks of it as " comporting itself like 
a stratified rock." That of Buckfield is mostly in the form of large 
beds and veins, and at Woodstock mica-schist is seen lying beneath it. 
Again, in the south-eastern coimties of Maine, granite at the south 
end of Bluehill Neck, overlies strata of gneiss and mica-schist ; and 
in the Kennebec region it is said that in one of the Hallo well quarries 
there are twenty-six different sheets, varying from eight inches to four 
feet in thickness, and that " these sheets are arranged like strata." In 
Canada, too, even the granites of the Lamentian and Lower Siliu'ian 
age appear in every case to be indigenous strata altered in situ, and 

18G4.] Geology and Palceontology. "' 121 

still retaining evidences of their former stratification. Tliesc inKtances 
might be greatly multii)lied not only in the American States, but l)y 
numerous examples in Europe, and probably by some in our own ishinds. 
Indeed nowhere is there any evidence of the hypothetical gianitic sub- 
stratum which, in even not yet very ancient treatises on Geoh>gy, wo 
were taught to believe constituted the " backbone of the eartli." Even 
one such example of interstratilication would have gone far to throw a 
doubt upon the jiurely igneous origin of gi-anite, but when instances 
become so multiplied the doctrine seems no longer tenable. Dr. Hitch- 
cock argues forcibly against it. The dry heat, he contends, that would 
be required to keep granite melted must be intense, for it resists tho 
most powerful blast-furnaces, and even if, as melted matter, it were 
injected in close contact with the cold walls of fissured rock, it must 
have cooled before it had time to penetrate all the narrow crevices in 
which it is found in the form of veins. Again he ui-ges that, if crys- 
tallized from such fusion, the quartz would have been consolidated and 
crystallized first, because it is less fusible than the mica and fcldsj^ar ; 
instead of which its condition in the structiu-e of granite shows it to 
have been the last consolidated of the ingredients, for if anyone ex- 
amines a piece of granite, he will see the crystals of mica and feldspar 
are often perfect, while those of quartz are never so. The quartz is 
always in the amorphous state, and the sharp crystals of mica and feld- 
spai" seem to cut into it, as is beautifully seen in gTaphic granite — an 
appearance which cannot be accounted for in any other way than that 
the mica and feldspar crystals were formed first, and that the quartz 
subsequently filled up the interstices. But such an admission is fatal to 
the doctrine of a cooling down from fusion by diy heat because, in that 
case, the quartz should have been, as we have said, the first to crystal- 
lize. Moreover, that granite contains not a few hydrated minerals, 
or such as contain water in their composition, is another fact telling 
also against the old opinions. 

In the matter of metamorphic rocks Mr. Sterry Himt has also been 
continuing those valuable theoretical and practical researches of which 
he gave us two instalments in 1858 and 1859. Those articles were 
remarkable for the great ability of his attempts to indicate the ages 
of granites by the amounts of soda or potash they contained, and 
during the present year he has given to the world another elabo- 
rate paper, read before the Dublin Geological Society, on the chemical 
and mineralogical relations of the metamorphic, or, as they have been 
as commonly called, the crystalline primitive rocks. It is not indeed 
so very long since all rocks of this character were included in the com- 
mon designation of primitive, and were considered to belong to a 
period anterior to all the fossiliferous formations, and indeed to the 
existence of life, either vegetable or animal, on oiu* earth. To exjjress 
this idea, the term " azoic " was invented, while " jjalfeozoic " was given 
to the Siliu'ian rocks, as containing the supposed first traces of ani- 
mated existence, or the " oldest life-forms," on our planet. Some 
geologists still consider the Lower Silm-ian or Cambrian zone to be the 
first bm-ial-ground of organic remains, and that no previous creation of 
animated beings or vegetation had taken place. Not only, however, 

122 Chronicles of Science. [Jan. 

do the imperfectness of tlie animal series, and the superior organization 
and degrees of development of the fossil genera and species met with 
in the lowest of the palaBOzoic rocks, as they are at present restricted 
in their downward horizons, militate against such a view by indicating 
the previous existence of zones of p-evious creations, and causing the 
reflective mind to regard these earliest palaeozoic fossils as only the 
shreds and patches of still earlier life-garments of our earth, but they 
seem also to make the inquiry lack the aid of the chemist and mine- 
ralogist to tell us whether, in the present altered state of such rock- 
masses as are older than the palaeozoic beds, there can be detected in 
the component materials any ingredients which owe their piesence to 
the former existence in those masses of organic remains. 

It is exactly with this question that Mr. Sterry Hunt has occupied 
himself, and has made some excellent attempts to ascertain whether, 
in the absence of organic remains, or of stratigraphical evidence, there 
are any means of determining, even approximately, the geological 
age of a given series of crystalline stratified rocks — in other words, 
whether the chemical conditions which have presided over the forma- 
tion of sedimentary rocks have so far varied, in the course of ages, as 
to impress upon such rocks any marked chemical and mineralogical 
differences. To some extent it does appear possible to work out such 
a problem in respect to definite cases, although as yet no one could 
see the way to the generalization of a rule ; indeed, in the ever- variable 
and divergent conditions of our planet's surface, and the different 
combinations and oppositions of the atmospheric influences which 
have been, through all periods, carrying on their effects around it 
everywhere, it seems impossible this ever should be accomplished. To 
arrive at any such indicative result in the case of imaltered sedimen- 
tary formations could not be accomplished without multiplied analyses, 
and even then the conclusions might not be absolute. It is different, 
however, when chemical or mineralogical changes have set in, for the 
natiu'al af&nities of some elements for others render definite the 
results of such combinations, and so we find that the crystalline 
minerals which are formed are definite in their composition, and vary 
with the chemical constitution of the sediment from which they were 
derived. Therefore it is that Mr. Sterry Hunt thinks these crystalline 
minerals of the metamorphosed rocks may become to a considerable 
extent, to the geologist, what organic remains in the unaltered rock 
are to the palaeontologist — a guide to geological age and succession. 
The feldspars, for example, composed mainly of silica and alumina, 
combined with the silicates of potash, soda, and lime, do, in their 
spontaneous decomposition, part with the latter ingredients, and there 
remains behind, as a final result, a hydrous silicate of alumina, which 
is kaolin, or clay. Now, where potash and soda feldspars are asso- 
ciated, it has been repeatedly observed that the soda-compoimd is 
much more readily decomposed than the potash-compound, and that 
the soda-feldspar becomes perfectly friable, and fit for a fm-ther reduc- 
tion into clay before the orthoclase, or potash-feldspar, has been altered 
at all. The result of combined chemical and mechanical agencies 
acting upon rocks containing quartz, with orthoclase and such soda- 

18G4.] Geology and Palceontology. 123 

foldspars as albito and oligoclasc, would be thus a sand-compound of 
quartz and the loss destructible iiotash-feldspar. The niccluinical 
agency might be air or water ; if the latter, tlicrc would be found sus- 
pended in it a tine clay, consisting mostly of the partially decomposed 
soda-feldsjiar. Now this jiroccss of destruction is evidently one 
which must go on in the wearing away of rocks by aqueous agency — ^just 
the agency which is the most important in such inquiries as the pre- 
sent, because most intimately associated with the dej^osition of tho 
sedimentary rocks. It is easy to see how, by such partial destruction 
of the primal rocks, quartz is for the most part wanting in those 
which contain a large proportion of alumina, while it is abundant in 
those in which j)otash-leldspar predominates. So long as this decom- 
position of alkaline silicates is sub-aerial, both the silica and alkali 
are removed in a soluble form. But as immense quantities of unde- 
composed fragments of the primal rock are detached by atmospheric 
causes, and carried down to the sea, which acts upon these with more 
power even than upon the sm'faces of the rock directly exposed to its 
influence, the process is often sub-marine and beneath the sea-bottom 
in the midst of sediments containing the carbonates of lime and mag- 
nesia. When the silicate of soda is, under such circumstances, set 
free, it reacts upon those earthy carbonates, or upon the chlorides in the 
sea- water, and forms in either case^a soluble soda-salt, and insoluble 
silicates of lime and magnesia. / - 

The som-ces of the carbonates of lime and magnesia in sedimentary 
strata, have been the decomposition of silicates containing those bases, 
such as lime-feldspar and pyroxene, and the action of the alkaline 
carbonates formed by the decomposition of feldspars upon the 
chlorides of lime and magnesia originally present in sea-water, but 
which have been by this process in subsequent ages, in gi-eat part 
replaced, by the resulting chloride of sodium. A cui-ious result as 
shomng the sea to have not been originally as salt in the primeval era 
as it is at the present epoch, and giving, if the total could be ascer- 
tained, the clay or aluminous silicate of the earth's crust, as a measm'e 
of not only the quantity of salt added to the primitive ocean, but of 
the amount of the carbonic acid removed from the air, and of the 
carbonates of lime and magnesia precipitated. As the coarser sedi- 
ments in which quartz and orthoclase prevail are permeable to 
infiltrating waters, their soda, lime, magnesia, and oxide of iron will 
be gradually removed, leaving at last only silica, alumina, and potash 
— the elements of granite. On the other hand, the finer marls and 
clays, resisting the penetration of water, will retain their soda, lime, 
magnesia, and oxide of iron, and having an excess of alumina, will by 
their metamorphism give rise to basic lime and soda-feldsjiars, to 
pyi'oxene and hornblende — the elements of diorites and dolerites. In 
this way, the long- continued operation of chemical and mechanical 
causes would natm-ally tend to divide all the crystalline silico-alumi- 
nous rocks of the earth's crust into two types, exactly corresponding 
to the two classes of so-called igneous rocks, the trachytic and 
pyroxenic, which geologists have supjiosed to have been derived from 
two distinct imaginary magmas beneath it. When, however, ordinary 

124: Chronicles of Science. [Jan. 

sedimentarj strata have been rendered crystalline by metamorphism, 
tbeir future alterability becomes difficult, because tbeir pei-meability to 
water is so enormously diminished, and it is not until they are once 
more broken down to the condition of soils and sediments, that they 
become again subjected to such important chemical changes as we 
have described. Hence, the mean proportions of alkali and alxmaina 
in the composition of the clay sediments of any geological period will 
depend not only upon the age of the formation, but upon the number 
of times its materials have been broken up, and the periods during 
which they have remained unmetamorphosed and exposed to the 
action of infiltrating waters. Such are the general principles which 
in this excellent paper Mr. Himt brings to bear upon the actual state 
of the metamorphic rocks of Canada from the Carboniferous to the 
Lower Silm-ian, and dowTQ to the azoic rocks and granite, even the 
veins of which he regards as formed like metalliferous veins by 
aqueous deposition in fissures. 

The Sixth Annual Eeport of the Maine Board of Agriculture* 
recently circulated, presents a feature not so common in this counti-y 
as it deservedly ought to be, an association of geological investigations 
with the practical jnu'suit of agriculture. Even in the first few pages 
on the application of fish-manure, and where we should have little 
expected it, we find practical hints from the geologist. Commenting 
on Mr. Bruce's endeavour to introduce this to us very objectionable 
and disgraceful appropriation of the most extensive source of animal 
food which nature supplies to mankind, Mr. Sterry Hunt recommends 
the combination of the fish-maniu'e with calcined shale for the pur- 
pose of driving away insects from the plants to which it is applied. 
Distilling a black bituminous shale from Port Daniel at a red heat, 
the disengaged vapours were passed through a vat containing the fish, 
which by the continuance of the heat were ultimately reduced to a 
pulpy mass. The calcined shale, ground to powder, was mingled 
with this ; the whole being then dried. Experiments made with 
the manm-e are rej)orted to have given satisfactory results ; it might 
be well if English agriculturists should pay some attention to the 
poorer kinds of bituminous shales which are met with in the British 
Isles, and even the refuse of the richer sorts, such as the Kimmeridge 
and the Glasgow shales, which have been used for making gas, might 
be in this way turned to a useful and profitable account, not necessa- 
rily for mixing with fish-manure, the use of which we have strongly 
deprecated, but for commingling with many other classes of maniu'es, 
as the chief efficacy calcined shale possesses against noxious insects 
appears to be in the presence, or perhaps in the odour, of the bitu- 
men it contains ; for it is known that coal-tar applied to the in- 
terior wood-work in greenhouses has the effect of expelling those 
unwelcome intruders. Such bituminous sandstones as those of Caith- 
ness, might thus be turned to profitable account, and there are other 

* ' Sixth Annual Eeport of the Secretary of the Maine Board of Agriculture.' 
Augusta: Stevens and flay ward, 1801-2. 

1864,] Geology and PalcBontology. 125 

rocks in various parts of our island, which, although not sufficiently 
rich for gas-making, contain quite sufficient ])ituminous ingredients 
for agricultural purposes, particularly the enormous beds of shale 
which are at present left untouched in our coal-pits. But it is not 
in incidental suggestions like this, valuable as they may he, that this 
Eeport shows in the strongest light the important relations existing 
between the geological structure of a country and the farming opera- 
tions carried on ui)on it. So high has the Board of Agi'icultm*e of 
Maine considered the advantage of such knowledge, that it has 
directed a special survey to be made of the whole State, " believing 
that such a survey, ably conducted, woidd greatly tend to develope and 
improve its agi-iculture ; " and urging at the same time "that the 
utility and value of such explorations arc no longer doubtful," This 
preliminary Geological Survey has been executed under the direction 
of Mr. Charles H. Hitchcock, of Amhurst, with Mr. Goodall, of Saco, 
as chemist, and Mr, Houghton as mineralogist. By them the sea- 
board from Saco to Calais was explored, and excursions made into the 
interior, and to the islands ; next through the north of Washington 
County to Holton, and thence to Bangor. Subsequently up the 
Penobscot river, down the AUeguish and St, John river to Woodstock, 
thi'ough the iron and slate region of Piscataquis Coxmty, the country 
around Moosehest lake and the Penobscot river. By these explora- 
tions and the use of the valuable observations previously made by Dr. 
Jackson of Boston, a sufficient idea of the geological structure of the 
slate has been obtained for the construction of a general map, to serve 
as a basis for futiu-e systematic and more thorough explorations. It 
is not our intention to follow through the rej^ort of this, as far as it 
goes, excellent siu'vey, but to gather rather from it such new or re- 
markable purely geological phenomena, as may be worthy of par- 
ticular notice. One of these is a condition of the pebbles in a con- 
glomerate bed on the northern border of Washington County, which 
is very remarkable. The inclination of the strata is some 65** east- 
erly ; the strike being N. 8° W. The layers are sometimes contorted, 
and numerous narrow perpendicular veins of quartz cut across their 
bedding. But the peculiarity of the conglomerate consists in the 
distortion and curvature of the pebbles it contains, the general appear- 
ance of which is illustrated in the accompanying sketch. They appear 
as if they had been drawn out, 
cm'ved, and pressed together by 
the forces to which they had been 
subjected. Mr. Hitchcock con- 
siders there is no doubt of these pebbles having been cm-ved since 
the consolidation of the rock in which they are embedded ; and even 
goes to the length of asserting, that such elongated pebbles have been 
changed into the siliceous laminfe of talcose and micaceous schists, 
while the cement has been converted into mica, the talc of talcose schists, 
and feldspar. To effect the change of fonn of the pebbles, according 
to Dr. Hitchcock's views, the substances of which they are composed 
require to have been brought into a soft or yielding state like moistened 

126 Chronicles of Science. [Jan. 

clay, and then to have been contorted under the application of force or 
pressure ; while to effect their still greater alteration into the laminae 
of schists, he looks to the further continued action of chemical changes 
amongst the heterogeneous sedimentary materials in selecting and 
combining the different mineral atoms in their proper proportions to 
form the new crystalline masses. • 

Letting alone this last topic, and confining ourselves to the pheno- 
mena of contortion only, if these pebbles were of clay, we could 
imderstand their being softened ; but if they are of limestone, sand- 
stone, slate, or flint, it is very hard to believe they ever were soft- 
ened after they were once solidified. The phenomenon is, however, 
exceedingly remarkable, and not yet perhaps clearly explainable. It 
would seem to belong to the same class as the Nagel-Flue of Switzer- 
land, so successfully investigated by Mr. Sorby, or as the nodular 
bands of limestone in the Wenlock Formation, to which attention has 
been drawn by M. La Touche and Mr. Salter. If anyone examines 
the ordinary condition of a conglomerate, or the nature of a sea-beach, 
the more or less rounded pebbles will be found simply piled one upon 
the other, very rarely are any elongated or flat, except when the 
pebbles are of slaty-rocks, and never bent unless they happen to be 
the fragments of naturally-curved strata. In no case are there any 
corresponding lines of contortion, such as shown in the woodcut, which 
represents a section of the Weston Conglomerate, in which the peb- 
bles are drawn out and flattened, and compared by Dr. Hitchcock to 
spheres of clay pulled out into prolate-spheroids ; and the pressure 
of an immense weight might, he thinks, be so continued as to elongate 
a pebble of clay into the resemblance of a lamina of quartz in gneiss. 
He makes intelligible the nature of the Weston Conglomerate by 
supposing that amongst many balls of clay some were plastic and 
some hard, and that these were then subjected to such a pressure as 
should pull out and flatten all the plastic ones, which would thus 
have their forms modified by the unyielding ones, the plastic pebbles 
fitting on the solid ones like a cap on the human head. " We find," 
he says, " among the distorted pebbles cases of this nature. Some 
pebbles have been more plastic than others, and the resiilts are: 
indentations of the harder into the softer ones, curves around the hard 
ones, or the fitting of one into another like a ball into its socket, or 
the ends of the elongated pebbles may only fit upon each other to 
economize space " — as in the woodcut. 

An example of the first stage of the distortion of pebbles is to be 
seen near Newport, K.I. The lower carboniferous conglomerate at 
Alms House, north of that city, is in a normal state, and consists of a 
mass of loosely-cemented cobble-stones, from an inch to six inches in 
diameter, all round or spheroidal ; but two miles fm-ther, at Pm-gatory, 
there is another mass of conglomerate, nearly of the same age, having 
the pebbles much elongated in the direction of the strike, flattened, 
and often indented, " by being pressed one into the other ; " they are 
sometimes a good deal bent, occasionally in two directions, the whole 
being cut across by parallel joints or fissures, varying in distance 

18G4.] Geology and Paleontology. 127 

from one or two inclics to many feet. The cement is very meagre, and 
consists of talcoso schist, containing crystals of magnetite : the 
pebbles, however, arc fii-mly adherent. In small flexures of the strata, 
Dr. Hitchcock has observed the elongated pebbles bent at the same 

The i)art of the ' Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society,'* 
containing Professor Owen's valuable and admirable Keport on the 
extraordinary bird-remains from the lithograjihic limestone of Pappen- 
hcim — the Archceopteryx macrorus — has been published during the past 
month, and the full particulars of the memorable description which 
excited such attention at Bm-lington House, in the November of last 
year, are now before the world. It appears to have received little 
alteration or emendation, as far as our memory will permit our judging, 
since the time of its first reading, when the completeness and lucid- 
ness of the account were fcatui-es which prominently struck all hearers. 
The first evidence of bird-remains in the Solenhofen-beds was, as it is 
well known, the impression of a single feather, described and figured, 
with his characteristic minuteness and care, by Hermann von Mayer, 
in the ' Jahrbuch fiir Mineralogie,' under the title of Archceopteryx 
litlwgraphica, and although it is most probable that the class of birds 
w^as represented in the Soleuhofen age by more than one family. Pro- 
fessor Owen has retained the generic appellation of Archfeopteryx for 
the j)resent sjiecimen. As the reptilian pterodactyles of the litho- 
graphic stone differ in the length of their tails — some having extremely 
long ones, as the BampJiorJiynchus longicaiidus, and others scarcely 
any, as the Pterodactylus crassirostris, so we may expect to find 
similar differences in the strange birds which lived in those days ; and 
just as the original appellation of Griphosaurus given to it by Wagner, 
under the idea of its being a feathered reptile, has been changed to 
Archfeopteryx, it is not by any means certain that the generic tenn may 
not yet have to be again altered. 

Professor Owen's paper commences with an account of the circmn- 
stances imder which the specimen was fomid and those under which it 
was acquired for our national collection. The exposed bones in the 
specimen are then named, and one after another compared with those 
of recent birds of different species, and the corresponding bones of 
various fossil pterodactyles, a comparison requiring unusual care and 
accuracy on account of the previously sujiposed reptilian characters of 
the singular remains. By his examination and comparison Professor 
Owen has proved the general ornithic nature of the fossil — a conclusion 
which must be henceforth adopted ; although there are some points 
which cannot be settled by the present relics, and which may hereafter, 
when fresh examples revive the subject, give rise to some important 
considerations. A magnificent lithograph of natiu'al size is given of 
the principal slab and its contents, even to its ripples and siurface- 
markings, by Mr. Dinkel, who has as conscientiously done his duty in 

* ' Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London,' vol. cliii. part 1 

128 Chronicles of Science. [Jan. 

as faithful a representation as it is in an artist's power to attain. But 
neither Mr. Dinkel nor any other artist can free himself from a bias 
of ideas. The hand will follow the mind, and given the notion of a 
fish's head, the pencil will involuntarily portray the resemblance in 
figuring the object to which the resemblance is assigned. When 
Professor Owen first described the Pappenheim specimen, he made no 
mention of what has since been described by Mr. Mackie as the brain 
or cast of the cerebral cavity of the skull, nor of certain osseous relics 
which in the present publication are referred to as a " premaxillary 
bone, and its impression resembling that of a fossil fish." And yet 
these objects are perhaps among, if not actually, the most important 
of all the fossilized remains. The nodule rej)resenting the brain, it is 
admitted by the Professor, may be, as suggested by Mr. Evans, " part 
of the cranium with the cast of the brain of the Ai'chaeopteryx ;" but 
of the so-called fish-head he makes no other remark than the quotation 
above, " resembling that of a fossil fish." Nor do we blame his reti- 
cence. Every word Professor Owen says carries weight, and the last- 
mentioned object is certainly in so obscure a state that no one, without 
further illustrative fossils, could by any possibility determine what it 
is. It would be discordant with all our present knowledge to find a 
bird's beak containing teeth in sockets, yet that would not be more 
extraordinary nor more out of all comijarisons with living things than 
a long tail such as the Archseopteryx imdoubtedly possesses. Yet 
such a toothed bill may be possible. After many days' careful study 
and comj)arison we could not convince ourselves that this object was a 
fish's jaw, nor could we find evidence enough to assert that it was a 
bird's beak with teeth ; but it certainly has, as it lies in the slab, as 
much likeness to a beak as to a premaxillaiy, and as there is not a 
fish-scale nor a fish-bone in the whole slab, nor in its counterpart, nor 
a speck nor portion of a fish in either, it is as possible for this object 
to belong to the Archaeopteryx as to any other creature. 

The general ornithic nature of the fossil is, as we have ali-eady 
said, indisputable, but not so positive do we think can anyone be as 
to its exceptional characters. If the Archaeopteryx had in its long 
vertebrate tail, one character so exceptional as not to be matched by 
any existing or any other fossil bird, it may have had other characters 
as exceptional ; and although we should say that no bird that preened 
its feathers would have teeth, yet the beak of a bird is but a modi- 
fied mammalian jaw, just as the whole structm-e of birds is a 
modification of the mammalian type ; so it is not without the bounds of 
possibility that a bird's jaw may be in such a state of development as 
to retain some traces of teeth. Nor can we be certain, it seems to us, 
that there are no reptilian affinities, or, at least, resemblances in the 
structui'e of the wings. Had the manus of ArchtBopteryx been adapted 
for the support of a membranous wing, the extent to which the 
skeleton is preserved, and the ordinary condition of the fossil Ptero- 
sauria in the lithographic stone, render it almost certain, as Professor 
Owen properly observes, that some of these most characteristic long 
slender bones of the pterosaurian wing-fingers would have been visible 

1864,] Microscopical Science. 129 

if such had existed in the present specimen ; and besides this negative 
evidence, the positive proof of the bird-like proportions of the pinion, 
and tlio existence of qnill-fcatliers, sufficiently evince the true class- 
affinity of the ArcliJBopteryx. We arc, however, in ignorance as to the 
manner in which those singular wing-hooks were attached to the main 
bones of the wing, and of all the e(nnparisons which Professor Owen 
has made with tlu; sjnir-wingcd birds, such as the Merula dactyloptera, 
Anser gamhcnsis, Parra Jacana, Palamedea cornuta, and Megajjodins, 
there are none, we believe, which give us a single illustration of the 
same eliaracter of organization as is exliibited by the claw-hooks in the 
Ai'chEeoptcryx. Indeed, Professor Owen admits that in this respect, it 
differs from every known bird in having " two free unguiculate digits," 
i. e. the wing-hooks, " in the hand," and that " these digits in the 
slenderness of the penultimate phalanx do resemble the miguiculate 
digits in the hand of the Pterodactyle/' But it is true, as Professor 
Owen continues, that " the claw has not the characteristic depth or 
breadth of that of the Pterodactyle ; and there is no trace of the much 
lengthened metacarpal and phalangial bones of the fifth digit, or 
peculiar wing-finger of the flying reptile." We dovibt, however, if 
the wing-claws of the Ai'chaeopteryx are comparable with the spm's of 
the jacana, or of the screamer ; and we are not aware that the 
skeletons of either are obtainable in this country for comparison. 

These are questions, however, which it is judicious of the Professor 
to avoid imtil there is sufficient evidence collected to warrant, if not 
a decisive, at least a reliable opinion. It is quite a different thing for 
us to point them out, that the importance of obtaining further illus- 
trative specimens may be borne in mind. 


As the advance of all physical science depends in a great measure on 
the degree of perfection of the instruments with which it is studied, 
we propose devoting this, om* first article on the progress of Micro- 
scojjical research, to a brief exposition of the improvements that have 
been recently made in the construction of the instrument. Our next 
article, on the other hand, shall be devoted to a review of the modern 
standard works on the Microscope, and its mode of appKcation ; and 
then having, as it were, set our house in order, we shall be prepared 
in our subsequent Numbers to enter directly on the true object of our 
work, namely, to keep om' readers au coiirant with the progi'ess of 
microscopical inquiry. 

Fortunately for us, we do not at the present day require to say 
anything in support of the claims of the microscope to public atten- 
tion. Scientific men have tmanimously decided in its favour, and 
although, among the general public, there are still individuals to be 
encountered who regard its teachings with distrust, their UTimber is 

VOL. I. K 

130 Chronicles of Science. [Jan. 

day by day becoming more and more limited, as the object and powers 
of the instrument are becoming better and better understood. Many 
false doctrines have no doubt been promulgated in consequence of the 
employment of the microscope ; but for one that depended on the 
imperfection of the instrument, a thousand arose from a defect in the 
observer. We are even forced to admit, that there are still amongst us, 
men who without any previous training, or special aptitude for micro- 
scopical research, damage the cause in which they are volunteers, by 
insisting upon publishing the result of their laboiu'S, and loading oviv 
journals with false data and erroneous theories ; which although 
perhaps perfectly harmless in themselves, nevertheless clog the 
chariot wheels of progress. And what is still more unfortunate, these 
would-be discoverers often become the worst enemies of the micro- 
scope ; for, as in the course of time they see their cherished facts 
and theories one by one swept away, instead of attributing this their 
misfortune to its proper cause, they seek to turn the blame against the 
instrument, which they imagine misled them. In a word, the enemies 
of the microscope, at the present time, are only to be foimd, either 
among those who do not possess an instrimient, or possessing one, do 
not know how to use it. Remember, we do not consider that a man 
knows how to employ the microscope because he can demonstrate the 
presence of infusoria in a drop of water, exhibit muscular fibres on 
prepared slides, or focus photographs of the Eoyal family, not bigger 
than a pin's point ; for nine out of every dozen of men who can do 
that are imequal to the preparation and demonstration of a piece 
of simple cellular tissue. If the microscope fails to assist such as 
we have just been describing, that is no reason why it should fail to 
assist others, even although they are not scientific men. 

The education requisite for microscopical inquiry is a special 
education, attainable by every ordinarily educated man, either by 
means of books, or, what is still better, by oral instruction. In proof 
of this assertion we have only to look aroimd us, and see in whose 
hands the microscope is now being tiu'ned to account, and we shall at 
once perceive that the employment of the instrument is no longer the 
monopoly of professional men. It has even passed thi'ough the 
second stage of its career, and after having for a time occupied the 
place of instructor of the idle horn* to the amateur, has entered, in the 
hands of the commercial class, upon the third phase of its existence. 
The liquids we drink, the food we eat, the clothes we wear, have each 
been found to lie within its scope. Hence the microscope is to be 
met with in the office, in the warehouse, and in the shop. It is con- 
siilted in ascertaining the purity of floiu", in revealing the natui-e of 
arrowi'oot, in unmasking the adulterations of coffee, and in innume- 
rable other ways advancing the interests of trade. And it would prove 
even still more useful in its commercial capacity, if men would but 
refrain from seeking its assistance luitil they had exhausted the infor- 
mation attainable by the unaided eye ; for the true object of the 
microscope is not to supplant, as too many imagine, but to extend our 
ordinary means of observation, and when so employed it never fails 

18G4.] Microscopical Science. 131 

to yield imiiortant information. It is not, of course, to bo supposed 
from tlicso rcniarks. that wo would try to limit its field of usefulness, 
for our object is, on the contrary, to endeavour to enlarge it. The 
advice we give has, in fact, this object in view, and is simjdy that if, 
instead of directly placing an object under the microscoiie, tlie observer 
will first take tlie trouble to examine it carefully with the naked eye, 
ho will find himself in a far better position to form a correct judgment 
of its natm-e on seeing it imder the magnifying-glass, than if he had 
omitted previously to do so. 

Having said this much regarding the observer, we must now tm'n 
om- attention to his instrument. It is essential that it should be of 
good quality. When we speak of a microscope being of good quality, 
we do not mean that it should have handsome and elaborate brass work, 
for that part which is so attractive to the eye is the least valuable 
of the whole. 'Tis in the object-glasses — 'tis in the lenses, that the 
real value of the instrmnent resides, and thus it was that scientific 
men so long preferred the low-priced insignificant-looking foreign 
microscopes of Nachet and Oberhauser, to the elaborately got-up Eng- 
lish instruments. The foreign opticians sacrificed appearance to utility, 
while too many of oiu- home manufactiu*ers sacrificed utility to appear- 
ance. At the present moment, however, the British manufacturer is 
inferior to none, even in low-j)riced instruments, while, as is well 
I^lo^vn, his suj^criority in those costing from thirty guineas, and up- 
wards, has never been matter of disj)utc. 

Before speaking of the cheap instruments, we must first call special 
attention to the high-power object-glasses that have been recently con- 
sti'ucted by Messrs. Eoss, Powell and Lealand, and Smith, Beck and 
Beck, the value of which it is scarcely possible to overrate, seeing that 
there can be no end to discovery, so long as there is no end to instru- 
mental perfection. In oiu* opinion, the only boundary that human 
knowledge admits of, is that imposed upon it by the limited means 
of physical observation. Every additional magnifying power is, as it 
were, a new world gained. 

The progress of science, therefore depends as much upon the 
mechanician, as upon the observer, for the acumen of the latter would 
fail to reach its goal, if unassisted by the skill of the former. 

It will be recollected that Eoss was the first to succeed in manu- 
factming an object-glass of to of an inch focus, and that shortly after- 
wards Powell and Lealand overstepped him by producing a to, which, 
for the time being, was regarded as quite a scientific ciu'iosity. The latter 
manufacturers have now, however, stimulated by Professor Beale, out- 
stripped themselves, and actually manufactured a workable lens of no 
less than ^V of an inch focus. Since ^then, Eoss has improved his ^V, 
and Smith, Beck, and Beck have produced a oV- Perhajjs it will be 
better, if before describing the oV, we fii-st say a few words regarding 
the tV of Eoss, and the to as now supplied by Smith, Beck, and Beck. 
The advantages of the new -nr are its having a large front distance 
with a maximum of real angle of apertm-e. It will work thi-ough 
glass the jh) of an inch thick, and bear the highest eyepieces. These 


132 Chronicles of Science. [Jan. 

improvements have been accomplislied by employing specimens of 
glass which allow the minimum of thickness of media to be used. 
The powers with this objective range from 600 to 4,000. The Ji^ is 
also so constructed, as to admit a large pencil of light, and at the 
same time leave a space between its front lens and the covering-glass 
of the slide sufficient to allow of the examination of ordinary objects. 
The -2'o magnifies with the three eyepieces, 950, 1,700, 3,100, linear; 
its aperture is 140 degrees ; and the thickness of the covering-glass, 
to which it will adjust, is "005 of an inch. 

The "2^ of Messrs. Powell and Lealand, as we already said, was 
first made at the suggestion of Dr. Beale, and we can corroborate from 
personal experience the expression made use of by the jurors of the 
late International Exhibition, namely, that it is possible to see by its 
means evidences of structm'e which are under ordinary powers utterly 
undistinguishable. On looking at an object with the -g-L-, after having 
first used the i of an inch, one is immediately struck with the great 
difference in size which it presents. The object looks six times as large 
as it did with the i of an inch, and although of com'se the field is 
darker, it is not nearly so dark as one might be led to expect, consider- 
ing that we are employing a magnifying power of 1,300 diameters. 

In order to see objects distinctly with the tf, it is, of course, 
necessary to use a good light ; but it does not require that the light 
should be very much stronger than that ordinarily employed when 
using a quarter. The common microscope-lamp, and achromatic 
condenser, are all that is requisite for the purpose of illimiination. 
Like Smith, Beck, and Beck's ^o, Powell and Lealand's -it object-glass 
is adapted to suit any English microscope, to be used with a covering- 
glass of "005 of an inch in thickness, and to leave a sufficient space 
between the lower lens and the glass to admit of its being employed 
in the examination of ordinary objects. The ^V consists, like all other 
good objectives, of eight lenses, two triplets, and one doublet. The 
front one, indeed, measures only •025 of an inch in diameter, and to 
the naked eye looks like a small diamond in its setting. It is, 
however, a vast deal more valuable than a diamond of the same 

There is great difficulty experienced in the manufacture of these 
lenses ; for they have actually to be ground under a microscope. 
This arises not simply because of their small size, but in order to 
enable the workman to keep the sm'faces perfectly level, as a deviation 
of as little as one thousandth of an inch would give rise to both 
spherical, and chromatic aberration. To specify the particular class 
of objects for which the ^ is adapted, is not our present pui-pose. 

We have now to say a few words regarding the improvements^ that 
have recently been introduced into the construction of the large micro- 
scope stands. These have for the most part been devised by Mr. 
Eoss, with the view of obtaining additional working room for the 
illuminating apparatus beneath the stage, in order to acquire the 
greatest possible angle for simple oblique illumination. This object 
has been accomplished, as will be seen in the figure, by reducing the 


Microscopical Science. 


thickness of the mechanical and sub-stages. A still further improve- 
ment has been made by adding an additioiial tube, and tliercby adapt- 
ing the instrument to the binocular arraiig(;ui(jnt. Moreover, Mr. lioss 
has graduated the circular parts of both the U2)per and lower stages so 
as to enable the observer to use the instrument as a goniometer. 

We shall now pass on to the consideration of our next head, 
namely, the diminished cost of instrmnents for the use of students 
and others. 

At our public institutions where there are large microscopical 
classes, as, for! example, at University College, London, and at the 
University of Edinbm-gh, the great majority of the students have 
hitherto been supplied with the foreign instruments of Nachet and 
Oberhauser, costing about 81. each. Now, however, English opticians 
are cutting the groimd from beneath the foreigTier's feet, by producing 
really good useful instrviments at similar prices. The most recently 
constructed microscope of the kind, is that just brought out by Parkes 
of Birmingham. 


Chronicles of Science. 


It is a handsome-looking instrument of the form represented in 
the accompanying woodcut. 

This microscope is made entirely of brass, and is 16 inches high. 
At first sight, it looks like tin instrument costing 181. or 201., which 
is more than double the actual price. It is supplied ^dth two powers 
of a quarter of an inch focus, two eyepieces, a polarising apparatus, a 
coarse and fine adjustment, a magnetic stage, a cii'cular diaphragm, a 
double mirror, and a stage condenser. 

The microscope is so constructed as to fit into a hexagonal box ; 
the bottom of which forms the stand of the instrument, and into which 
are set the requisite apparatus. So, no sooner is the top of the box 
removed, than the microscope is foimd in its place all ready for use. 
The objectives and eyepieces are, as we have said, fitted into the stand 
round the instrument, so that they can be adjusted at a moment's 
notice, and in order that this may be done more eflectively they are 
fitted with slips as well as screw attachments. 

Moreover, the mahogany stand is polished, and has a circular groove 
round it, to receive the lip of a glass-bell jar, so that the box cover 

1864.] Microscopical Science. 135 

may bo tlispcnscd with, except in tiavelliiit^, and the instnimcnt, with 
its ghiss shade, forms, a haudsouic ornament to a room, while at tho 
same time, it is always ready for immediate use. 

If Mr. Parkes furnishes a quality of lenses to all his microscopes 
made on this i)lan, similar to those attached to the instriunent we had 
tho op2)ortunity of seeing at Univei'sity College, wo must admit he will 
prove a formidable rival to foreign instrument makers. 

There are still lower priced instruments, which are extremely well 
adapted for educational purposes, now being manufactui'od by Messrs. 
Highley, Pillischer, Baker, and Smith and Beck ; but the consideration 
of these wo must defer to a futiu-e occasion, and for tho present tui-n our 
attention to the binocular microscope. 

As is well known, the purpose of the binocular microscope is to 
remedy the difficulty in the way of correct observation, arising from 
our having to view an object with only one eye. Mr. Wenham, by a 
very simple contrivance, has accomplished this in a most satisfactory 
manner, at least, as far as low magnifying powers are concerned ; there 
is still, however, room for imiu'ovement ^\dth respect to high magnify- 
ing powers. By means of a small prism mounted in a brass box 
which slides into the draw tube immediately over the objective, the 
rays of light proceeding from the object are reflected in two dii'octions, 
which by means of a double body are conveyed to both eyes, and 
thereby give a stereoscopic view of tho substance imder obsei"vation. 
This is a most important point gained, when uneven sm-faces are being 
examined, because it enables the observer at once to judge of the posi- 
tion, form, and relative distance of the various parts without altering 
the focus of the microscope. 

So valuable, indeed, has this improvement been considered, that all 
opticians are now prepared to attach an additional di'aw tube and 
prism to any of the ordinary uniocular instruments, and thereby make 
them answer both pur2)oses. For be it remembered, that the attach- 
ment of a binocular body in no way interferes with the employment of 
the instrument as a single-eyed microscope. 

As it is impossible, in this short review, to describe all the varieties 
of binocular microscopes now placed before the public, we must limit 
GUI' remarks to the one which we consider the most perfect. 

The binocidar, which we believe is most deserving of this title, is 
that just brought out by Mr. CoUins (of Titchfield Street, Portland 
Place, London). It is constructed on the model suggested by Pro- 
fessor Harley, and contains all the recent improvements for combining 
rapidity of application, with simplicity in manipulation. Indeed, so 
far as the saving of time is concerned, we scarcely know how a change 
for the better could be devised. It possesses also the fm-ther advan- 
tage of having the apparatus so arranged as to render it a matter of 
difficulty to put it out of order. The whole apparatus of the instru- 
ment, prism, polariscope, stage condenser, objectives of both high 
and low powers, &c., &c., are attached to the microscope itself, and 
that, too, in such a manner as to enable the observer to place them 
in exact position without tho tm'n of a single screw, or a moment's 


Chronicles of Science. 


A glance at the accompanying woodcut will greatly aid in the 
imderstanding of this mode of arrangement. 

The microscope, as is here seen, is fixed into the bottom of the 
mahogany box, which forms at the same time the stand. Eomid it, 
like the one previously described, which is in this respect made on 
Dr. Harley's model, a groove is run to receive the lip of a glass 
shade. The instrument itself is made of polished brass, and is eighteen 
inches high. The eyepieces are suj^plied with shades (a, a) to protect 
the eyes. 

These are a great comfort to the observer when he is using the 
instrument for any length of time. 

At the end of the transverse arm (/), is the box which contains 
both Wenham's binocular prism, and the analyser of the polariscope ; 
and by merely drawing it a little out, or pushing it farther in, the 
instrument can be instantly changed from a binocular to a imiocular, 
and still further to a polarising microscope. 

Immediately beneath (/) are the two objectives, a quarter, and an 
inch ; so that in order to change the power, all that is necessary is to 
slide them backwards or forwards. Moreover, these are fitted with the 
imiversal screw, so that either of them may be detached, as in an 
ordinary instrument, and a i, a ^, or any other power, put in its place 
at the option of the observer. The instrument is fitted with a coarse 

1864.] Mining, Mineralogy, and Metallurgy. 187 

and fino acljustmcnt, and has tlic additional advantage of a magnetic 
stage, in the cross-bar (//) of which is a gi-oove, in order that the 
observer may enjoy the luxiuy of applying a Maltwood's finder, as in 
large instrimieuts possessing movable stages.* Beneath the stage is 
seen the polariser (p), fitted into the circidar diaphragm. 

The double mirror (m) possesses a triple joint, so that it can bo 
applied obliqiicly in all directions. Indeed, as we before said, it is 
difficult to see how an instrument could be devised of a more simple, 
and, at the same time, so perfect construction at the price. 

Having now given our readers an insight into the most important 
improvements that have been recently made in the construction of 
the instrument, we purpose in om* next Number introducing to their 
notice, the various works on the microscope, and its mode of appli- 


The Mining operations of these islands may be regarded as amongst the 
most important of our industries, taxing— as they do, to the utmost — 
the powers of man's endurance, and the resources of engineering 
science ; requiring the boldest expenditm-e of an enormous capital, and 
adding nearly thirty millions sterling to our national wealth. Hidden 
in our rocks is the " hoarded treasure," but man, the magician with 
the wand of industry, brings it forth to-day and converts the valueless 
ores into valuable metals, which minister in a thousand fonns to the 
necessities of human existence. 

The subterranean explorations now in active progress in this 
coimtry, claim the labour's of above 300,000 Miners, independently of 
men, boys and women, employed at the surface. They task the powers 
of thousands of steam-engines in pmnj)ing the waters from the depths ; 
in di-awing the minerals from the mines ; in lowering and raising the 
men ; and in restoring pure air to those dai'k recesses in which the 
atmosphere is rapidly suflering deterioration from several causes. 

At the present time there are upwards of 3,000 collieries, and not 
less than 1,000 metalliferous mines at work in the United Kingdom. 
The produce of these — in the more important minerals only — dm'ing 
the last two years, has been as follows :| — 

1861. 1862. 

Tons. Tons. 

Coals . . 85,635,214 . . 81,638,338 

Iron Ore . . 7,215,518 

Copper . . 231,487 

Tin . . . 11,640 

Lead . . 90,696 

Zinc . . 15,770 

Pyrites . . 125,135 







* Maltwood's finder can be obtained at Smith, Beck, and Beck's. 

t These, and all the statistical returns given, are taken from the 'Bliueral 
Statistics of the United Kingdom,' by Roltert Hunt, F.E.S., which are published 
annually by order of the Lords Commissioners of Her Majesty's Treasury. 

138 Chronicles of Science. [Jan. 

In addition to these, of ores of the metals, our mines give us 
Silver, Nickel, Cobalt, Tungsten, Antimony, Manganese, and others. 
Of earthy minerals we produce Barytes, Strontian, and Gypsum, in- 
dependently of the Lime, Magnesia, Porcelain, and other clays ; while 
the Salt districts of Cheshire and Worcestershire give us above 900,000 
tons of Salt annually. 

Gold must be regarded as an unusual product from British rocks, 
but the Quartz lodes in the vicinity of Dolgelly gave us of that precious 
metal, in 1861, 2,784 standard ounces, of the value of 10,817/., and in 
1862, 5,299 standard ounces, the value of which was 30,390Z. 

Nearly all the Lead ores of these Islands contain Silver, and from 
this soui'ce, by an interesting Metallurgical process, we obtained, in 
1861, 569,530 ounces, and in 1862, 686,123 ounces of sterling Silver. 

From the retiu-ns obtained by the ' Mining Eecord ' Oifice, we 
learn that the values of the Metals produced from the ores of the 
British Islands alone, and Coals, were at the place of production — 

In 1861 at 34,602,853Z. 
In 1862 at 84,691,037?. 

In this rapid sketch, we endeavour to convey a correct idea of the 
importance of oiu* Mining operations, without loading our pages with 
details, which may be consulted by all who are interested in the sub- 
ject, in the publication already quoted. 

Directly connected with om* Coal-Mining, one question of the 
highest importance has been recently revived : — that is, the probable 
duration of our coal-beds. Sir William Ai'mstrong, in his Address as 
President of the British Association, at the recent Meeting at New- 
castle-on-Tyne, spoke as follows on this subject : — " By combining 
the known thickness of the various workable seams of coal, and com- 
puting the area of the sm^ace under which they lie, it is easy to arrive 
at an estimate of the total quantity comprised in our coal-bearing 
strata. Assuming 4,000 feet as the greatest depth at which it will 
ever be possible to carry on mining operations, and rejecting all seams 
of less than two feet in thickness, the entire available coal existing in 
these Islands has been calculated to amount to about 80,000 millions 
of tons, which, at the present rate of consiunption, would be exhausted 
in 930 years ; but, with a continiied yearly increase of two millions 
and three quarters of tons, would only last two hundred and twelve 
years." * 

Mr. Greenwell stated a few years since his opinion that "the 
Northern coal-field would continue 331 years." Mr. T. Y. Hall 
agrees in the main v,dth Mr. Greenwell, and taking the annual con- 
sumption of the Newcastle coal-field at 14 millions of tons, he gives 
865 years as the period at which this coal-field will be exhausted. 
Mr. Fordyce in 1860, supposing the drain upon this coal-field to be 
20 millions of tons annually, says, "then at this rate of demand the 
coal-field would be exhausted in the course of 256.years."| 

* Ecpoi't of tlio Meeting of the British Association at Newcastle, 18G3. 
t See ' Tlio Triinsactions of the North of England Institute of Mining En- 
gineers/ and Fordyce's 'History of Coal, Coke, and Coal Fields,' 1860. 

18G4.] Mining, Mineralogy, and Metallurgy. 139 

In tlio llcport prcKcntod hy the Coal Trade at tho recent Meeting 
of the British Association, the rate at which the reporters suppose tlie 
exhaustion of this coal-tiehl is going on in 18G1, is given at 21,777,570 
tons,* This quantity is above that which is given in the ' Mineral 
Statistics for 1862 ' (we there find 19,3G0,356 tons recorded as tho 
quantity raised and sold ; but the coal wasted is not reported, owing 
to tho uncertainty of the retui'ns obtained). 

Mr. Edward Hull has devoted much attention to this important 
subject. He calculates that the total remaining supply of coal 
amounts to 79,843 millions of tons, and " that in the whole of Great 
Britain the supply is sufficient to last for upwards of a thousand years 
with a production of 72 millions of tons annually," f 

It has been already shown that the general rate of exhaustion has 
exceeded this computation by twelve millions of tons. It is not, how- 
ever, probable that there will be any long continuance of such a rapid 
increase. The progress of civilization has ever been a system of 
imdulations, the maximmn of elevation is reached, and the still onward 
wave subsides, the momentiun acquired in its decline being the power 
by which it again rises to its highest level. Let it not be inferred 
from this that we suppose oiu* commerce and manufactm*es to have 
reached their highest point. It is believed that a large extension is 
before us, but we argue, from the history of the past, that our progi'ess 
will not be a system of continuous rise in the futui'e. The question 
requiring the limits of time within which the coal-fields of these 
Islands will be exhausted has been hastily propounded, and no less 
hastily replied to. No satisfactory computation of the quantities of 
icorkable coal remaining in our several coal-fields has yet been made. 
Mr. B. Hull, in his work ali'eady quoted, has given the best existing 
information, but those most intimately acquainted with special locali- 
ties, all alike pronounce the evidence to be incomplete. This is 
admitted, by the gi-ant of a small sum from the funds of the British 
Association, to collect exact information on this point. The grant 
is so small, for the amount of work which is to be done, that nothing 
satisfactory can be expected from this assistance. The Government 
having at its command a trained body of men, of superior scientific 
knowledge, in the officers of the Geological Survey, with twelve In- 
spectors of Collieries, each man well acqiiainted with his own district, 
and a Mining Eecord office with its statistical retui'ns, might, by a 
judicious arrangement, and a sufficient gTant of money, determine the 
question within very small limits of error. This stock-taking would be 
a very important one, bearing as it does, on the future of every manu- 
factm'ing and commercial industry, which has placed our coimtry the 
foremost amongst the nations, — a position which we desii'e to retain. 
Eeferring, of course to their own field only, the Eeporters on the 
Northern coal-field say, " Until further and more extensive explora- 

* 'On Coal, Coke, and Coal ]Mining,'by Nicholas Wood, F.G.S., John Taylor, 
John Marley, and J. W. Pease, in ' History of the Trade and Manufactures of 
the Tyne, Wear, and Tees.' Spon : London, 1863. 

t ' The Coal Fields of Great Britain,' by Edward Hull, B.A. Second edition. 
Stanford : London. 

140 Chronicles of Science. [Jan. 

tions determine at what distance beyond the coast the greatest de- 
pression of the coal-beds will be found, we are completely at fault as 
to the quantity of coal lying underneath the sea. * * * * "We have 
not yet reached the threshold of such a conjecture. We have not yet 
explored one square mile of this vast unknown space, or determined 
one of the many elements required in such an intricate and uncertain 
investigation." To a certain extent, these remarks will apply with 
all their force to other localities. The difficulties determining the 
existence of coal, and its quantity, under several unexplored regions 
are exceedingly great, and until opened out, it could only be approxi- 
mately estimated. Still we cannot but think the concluding remark 
of the Eeporters, that " such an investigation can be of no practical 
utility, and that the attempt for a vast period of time is, at the least, 
premature," is one induced, rather by the influences of commerce, 
looking only to the present, than by the broader spirit of jjhilan- 
thropy which embraces the futm-e. It may not be out of place here 
to caution the less scientific of our readers from receiving, as in any 
way probable, that speculation which is echoed from book to book 
promising man that science will find, when coal is exhausted, some 
other source of heat and light, which shall be equally economical and 
as easy of application. If those speculative minds, who supj)ose the 
time will come when the constituents of water will be burnt, or elec- 
tricity be made an unfailing producer of heat, would but carefully 
entertain the fact, that every form of physical force is the result of 
the destruction [change of form) of matter somewhere, they would be 
more cautious in promulgating their xmsupported hypotheses. To 
burn zinc or iron in a voltaic battery to produce heat or light, must 
always be infinitely more costly than bm'ning coal in a furnace. 

The lamentable catastrophes which from time to time occiu" in our 
collieries, awaken public attention, and excite the utmost sympathy 
for the sorrowing siu-vivors. That there is a deep-felt desire to 
assuage the flood of misery which falls, tempest-like, upon a colliery 
village ; and so far to improve the conditions under which the coal- 
miner labom-s, as to render the risks less imminent to him, is proved 
by the manner in which money was poured into the Hartley Fund. 
After some delay, the large sum whch remained unexpended, after 
every necessary want had been satisfied amongst the widows and 
orphans of those poor men who pei'ished so miserably in that Colliery, 
has been distributed to other districts for the purpose of forming the 
nucleus of local fimds to meet such exigencies as may unhappily arise. 
The public expression of feeling is loud, it will be heard and attended 
to ; but, independently of the impulse which is due to this voice, 
it must not be forgotten that numerous minds are, and have been 
silently and earnestly at work, aiming to improve all the conditions of 
our collieries, and so to render accidents less common. 

We have lately, at the Morfa Colliery, in South Wales, had an 
explosion of fire-damp, by which 39 men were destroyed. This 
serious accident occurred in a colliery remarkable for its very excel- 
lent arrangements. The works were carried on under the most skilled 
colliery engineers ; the ventilation was excellent ; locked safety-lamps 

1864.] Mining, Mineralogy, and Metallurgy. 141 

were always used ; and the Btrictiicss with wliicli a wcll-dcviscd code 
of rules was enforced appeared to secure this colliery from accident 
by explosion. Yet, when least expected, the tire-dami) accumulates, 
and mysteriously it is. tired, sweeping away in a moment 'dO men, and 
strewing wreck around in its deadly progress. This sad accident 
should teach us that we must not suppose we can, by any skill or care, 
secure absolute immunity from casualties of this class. In all proba- 
bility the Morfa expk)sion arose from a sudden outbm-st of carbm-etted 
hydrogen gas, attended with a fall of the roof, by which the wire 
gauze of a safety-lamp became broken. It is important that a record 
should be prominently made of the fact, that the proprietors of this 
colliery, the Messrs. Vivian, refused the aid which the public readily 
offered, and that they take upon themselves the burthen of supporting 
the widows and orphans of those who perished in their cmj)loyment. 
Knowing the imperfections of human nature, and the power exerted 
by selfishness over the better feelings of the heart, we are persuaded 
that both master and man would be permanently benefited by a legis- 
lative enactment, rendering it imperative that the Colliery proprietor 
should be responsible for the maintenance of the widow and the child 
of the collier, who has perished by accident in his pit. ^\ ith such a 
provision, a more searching system of inspection would be introduced ; 
the workings would be kept in better order ; rules would be more 
rigidly enforced ; and, as a consequence, the coal would be obtained 
in better condition, and at less cost, than at present. Beyond this, 
the Colliery proprietors would speedily jn'otect themselves by forming 
fimds to meet the exigencies as they arose. A com-se of this kind is 
the only one left for trial : there is sm-ely philanthropy enough in this 
Christian land to force on the exj)eriment. 

In nearly every division of hmnan labour', some mechanical power 
has been introduced for the purpose of relieving the labom-er from 
the constant strain made upon his muscular system. The coal-hewer 
has not, however, been in any way assisted. With the primitive pict 
and the ancient wedge, he has been compelled, often under the most 
trying conditions, to " get " the coal. This state of things may be 
accounted for by the circumstance that Mining work is performed in 
the deep and dark bowels of the earth, where there is little to attract, 
and much to repel, such minds as usually give birth to appliances of 
physical force. The subject has not been, however, entirely neglected. 
So long since as 1789, a patent appears to have been gi-anted for 
improved machinery to be used in getting coal, and since that time 
many plans have been proposed, and some of them patented, though 
none have been successfully applied. The first machine wliich has 
been found capable of taking its place in the regular business of coal- 
cvitting is one belonging to the West Ardsley Coal Company, Messrs. 
Firth, Douisthorpe, and Bower. This machine has been in regular 
work during the last twelve months, and it appears to be admii-ably 
adapted to the pm-pose for which it is contrived. 

The Machine— shown on the adjoining plate — is carried on a cast- 
metal frame of great firmness, the size and weight varj^ng to suit the 
condition and thickness of the bed of coal to be operated upon. An 


Chronicles of Science. 


The Arddcjj Compamfs Marhiiie 

1864.] Mininj, Mineralogy, and Metallurgy. 14.3 

EngiBC is mounted witliin this framework : it is actuated by com- 
pressed air, and so arranged as to give the blow of the pick or cutter, 
cither by the p«</Z or the 2^ush of the piston. Ahnost any form of engine 
is applicable, but that which is employed with advantage in practice at 
Ai-dslcy Colliery, is the oscillating cylinder principle, whereby is 
obtained compactness of form and diminished friction in the working 
parts. The whole is carried upon wheels with flanges, sometimes 
single and sometimes double, as may be required by the natm-o of the 
Avork. It is propelled backward and forward by a wheel and screw, 
or a ratchet and pawl, which is fized on one side. On the other side 
is the valve-lever to regadate the admission and the emission of the 
air, and the stroke of the piston when the Machine is at work ; 
the man in charge of it moves the ratchet-lever, which is con- 
nected with the gearing of the under-carriage, and thus pushes up 
the carriage on the tram, a distance equal to the cut of the previous 
blow ; and so moves on to the end of the " bank," or working face of the 
coal. In seams of three feet, or upwards in thickness, the man may 
sit on a movable seat fixed at the end of the Machine, but in thin 
seams this cannot be done, and he has to kneel on a truck running 
on low pulleys or rollers which travel in the rear of the cutting- 

The cut, or groove of the coal, made by hand-labom', is a triangular 
opening varying in size according to the hardness and nature of the 
coal, but averaging from 9 to 12 inches. In firm coal the machine 
makes a cut which is not usually more than 2^ inches' opening, and 
the imder-cut is taken 3 feet into the coal. The Ardsley Coal Com- 
pany state that the coal is obtained in a better condition by machine, 
than by hand cutting, so mitch so that about Is. a ton more can be 
obtained for the coal, on the yield of the seam. 

A matter of more imj)ortance than this is ui'ged by the proprietors, 
viz. the diminished risk to the persons and lives of the employed. 

Numerous lives are lost by falls of coal. It will be well under- 
stood, that, if the miner has made an opening in the lower j)art of the 
coal, which shall be 12 inches wide on the face, and the superincum- 
bent mass of coal shoidd by its weight fall, much care will be required 
on the part of the workman to keep himseK harmless. Often, when 
working in a constrained position, the coalhewer, unable to relieve 
himself from the falling masses, is crushed to death. 

By the machine work there is much less liability to this kind of 
accident. The groove being narrow can be spragged with ease and 
system, and a slip in the coal only closes up the groove. In ordinary 
cases the coal is not pushed out ; but, if it does come forward, there 
is little danger to the workman, because he can readily get out of the 
way, and if it catches the machine but little injmy is done. There 
are some technical advantages, beyond those named, which need not 
be noticed in this Jom'nal. 

The length of the coal-cutting machine which we have described, 
has been thought by some to be a disadvantage. Difficulties are said 
to have arisen when it was required to be taken round the short elbows, 
and the abrupt ciu'ves, which often occm* in a coUiery. To obviate this 


Chronicles of Science. 


Messrs. Eidley and Jones have constructed a new macliine, wliicli is 
about half the length of the machine in use by the Ai'dsley Company. 
This diminution in the length is eflfected by an ingenious arrangement. 

Ridley ;^ Jones's Machi)te. 


Mining, Mineralogy, and Metallurgy. 


tho connecting rod to whicli the pick is uttacLed, acting as a substitute 
for the piston, in tliis way the required length of stroke is obtained, as 
it were, within tlie cylinder itself. 

This machine is very small and compact, being two feet two inches 
high, and three feet long, the i)ick being two feet six inches in length. 
As in the former case a mati and a boy attend the machine in its pro- 
gress along the ordinary tramway of the colliery. 

The following diagrams will render clear the difference between 
the two machines. Fig. 1 represents the old patent arrangement : a 
is the cylinder, b the piston, c the piston rod, d the connecting red, e 
the crank or lever. Fig. 2 represents the new patent trunk arrange- 
ment : a is the cylinder, h the piston, c tho trunk, d the connecting 
rod, e the crank or lever. 


Fig. 2. 

Either of these machines is guaranteed to be capable of imder- 
cutting a seam of coal to the depth of three feet, and to the length of 
150 yards, along the face of the coal, in the space of eight hours. These 
machines can be worked either by compressed air or by steam. At 
the xlrdsley Pit, air has been employed, and the experience of eighteen 
months conlirms its advantage over any other motive power, for this 
purpose. The air is pressed into a receiver on the sm'face, by an 
ordinary steam-engine, to a pressui-e of from 45 to 50 lbs. to the inch. 
It is led down the shaft 80 fathoms deep in 4i-inch metal pipes, and 
hence in pipes of diminished diameter in the several directions of the 
workings, and finally into the ''Banks" or working faces by India- 
rubber tubing of 1-j-incli diameter. 

The use of aii', underground, has many advantages. It is free 
from any kind of danger, and exceedingly manageable ; there is 
nothing of an inconvenient or annoying character to be guarded 
against. It is clean, diw, pure, and cool. 

Beyond all this, when the air has performed its mechanical work, it 
may be made available for saiiatory purposes. When discharged from 
the cylinder of the coal-cutting machine, under a pressure of three 

VOL. I. L 

146 Chronicles of Science. [Jan. 

atmosplieres, which at 100 strokes per minute, when expanded to 
its natural volume, gives about 300 cubic feet of air, this supjjly can 
be sent into each working face. This air, in expanding, takes heat 
from all surrounding bodies, thus lowering the temperature of the 
mine ; and it, at the same time, increases the current, and dilutes the 
noxious agents which are found, as tlie preducts of respiration and of 
combustion, or such as are evolved from the coal itself. The advan- 
tages of these machines are most satibfactorily proved, and many coal 
proprietors have made arrangements for their introduction to their 
several works.* How will the invention be received by the mining 
population '? is a question which many ask. Since the machine is to 
relieve the miner from his heaviest labour — to do, indeed, the drudgery 
of the pit — and thus tend to alleviate his condition, reserving his 
strength for less injurious trials, he cannot but feel that the aid 
afforded him is great, and we hope that he will receive it with all 

In our anxiety to describe clearly the coal-cutting machines, so 
much space has been absorbed, that we feel compelled to defer to our 
next Nmnber all notice of two or three machines — which have been 
devised, for working upon our hardest rocks, — used in driving levels 
and proposed for use in sinking shafts in our metalliferous mines. 

If the collier be exposed to injurious influences — and subject to 
violent casualties — the metalliferous miner is subjected to conditions 
so much more distressing, that, although we seldom hear of such diro 
calamities as those which follow from an explosion of lire- damp, it is 
too well known that the nmnber who perish young, from the con- 
sequences of their labour, is far greater, relatively, than the deaths 
occurring amongst the coal-miners. Every mechanical aid, therefore, 
which proves a benefit in one case, becomes a yet greater blessing in 
the other. We expect before om* second Number can appear, that the 
Report of Lord Kinnaird's Commission, " To inquire into the sanatory 
conditions of the metalliferous miner," will have been published, and, 
consequently, it will demand our attention in connection with the 
boring machinery — analogous to that employed in driving the tunnel 
through Mont Cenis — which promises to take the wearying task of 
"beating the borer" from the failing arm of flesh, and transfer it to 
the resistless arm of iron. 

It is interesting to find, that some successful attempts have been 
made to introduce so much of science amongst our miners as jiromises 
to facilitate their labours, and relieve them from the liability to error, 
which is ever the attendant on ignorance. 

The Miners' Association of Cornwall and Devonshire, and the 
Mining Schools of Bristol, Wigan, and Glasgow, are doing good work. 
At the same time as those local institutions, supjjorted by limited 
subscriptions, are earnestly at Avork, the Eoyal School of Mines in 
London, supported by an annual vote from the House of Commons, 
is providing a numerous staff of young men furnished with all the 
resources of modern science, to undertake the direction of the ore- 

* We believe ihat the new coal cutting-machine has been at work three months 
or more at the Ince Hall Colliery. — Ed. 

Quarterly Joixrnal of Science, JST" 

Veitsts with throws 

OF One and Twelve Fathoms. 


Most productive porlion of (Jw vein (with or without rider) 

Productive in the presence of a rider 

Underlain pcrrtians 



18G4.| Mining, Mineralogy, and Metallurgy. 147 

mines, the engineering difficulties of wlucb arc rapidly augmenting 
with the increasing dejjtli. 

The imcertainty which attends the conditions of any of our 
mineral lodes or veins, is one oi the causes which has led to tlio 
unfortunate spirit of gambling which marks too many Mining specu- 
lations. It may never be possible to pronoimce with certainty, 
whether a mineral lode shall jirove rich, in the metalliferous ores, ifi 
depth. But it is certainly within the limits of human knowledge to 
be able to pronounce on the high probabilities of any subterranean 
exploration being remunerative or otherwise. 

The Philosopher who stands ui)on the surface of the Earth, and 
frames his hypothesis, as to the laws by which the metals have been 
deposited in the fissures of the rocks, is as likely to run wildly wrong, 
as the untaught miner, whcj, without a knowledge of one of the Physical 
Forces, persuades himself that he has an unfailing rule for determining 
the value of the hidden treasures. Neither the one nor the other will 
ever advance knowledge by his guesses. Teach the Miner to observe 
carefully, and to record his observations correctly — then call in the 
aid of the Philosopher, and his deductions from a sufficient number of 
well-observed facts will possess a high value. It is an important and 
a most favom'able feature of the present time, that several practical 
miners are employed in endeavoiu's to determine if any constant law 
can be discovered in relation to the accumulation of the Metalliferous 
ores in lodes. 

M, Moisenet, Ingenieur des Mines, — who has himself examined 
with gi-eat industry the Metal Mines of this country, — has endeavoured 
to refer the conditions of om- mineral deposits to actions influenced 
by the direction of our great mountain ranges. In this country 
Mr. Lonsdale Bradley has published a valuable set of sections of 
the strata, in the lead-bearing rocks of Swaledale ; and given careful 
explanations of the actual conditions observed in the veins. 

Those sections instruct us on some points, which from tlieir almost 
constant occmTence, assume the conditions of a law. These are that 
Limestones and Cherts are the beds which are productive of lead, and 
that the Grits and Plates arc wholly unproductive. All mineral veins 
must be regarded as lines of dislocation ; the strata seldom being pre- 
cisely similar on both sides of the fissure or lode. Those distm'bances 
are locally termed " throws." The sections published by Mr, L. Brad- 
ley appear to prove, amongst other facts, " That veins of simple throws 
are the most jiroductive of lead-ore from having ore-bearing or ore- 
producing beds on each side of the veins, ojiposite or nearly so to each 
other ;" " that veins of large throws are invariably improductive, because 
the ore-bearing beds are thrown past each other, and that cross veins 
of large throws when productive of lead ore are usually so in the 
Limestones."* In the sections observed in 40 lodes, and given — care- 
fully drawn to scale — in Mr. Bradley's book, these conditions are 
clearly shown. The accompanying lithcgTaphed examples of two 
kinds of " throw " will fully illustrate this position. 

* 'An Inquiry into the Deposition of Lead Ore in the Mineral Veins of Swale- 
dale, Yorkshire.' ' Bv Lonsdale Bnidlev, F.G.S. Edward Stanford, London, 186"2. 

L 2 


Chronicles of Science. 


A far more extensive inquiry lias been made by Mr. Wallace of 
Alston Moor, witb a view to the solution of tbis problem, and be is 
fully persuaded that, as far as this district is concerned, he has arrived 
at the true solution.* The balance of evidence is greatly in favour of 
the hypothesis put forth. It is net possible, within the limits of a 
summary notice, to explain satisfactorily the views of this writer. 
Suffice it to say, that Mr. Wallace regards the mineral lodes as chan- 
nels through which, the waters accumulated on the sui'face, and 
percolating the rock, were discharged. These waters are supposed to 
derive from the adjacent rocks, or from some other source, the minerals 
which are subsequently deposited in those larger channels. The rich- 
ness of any lode is determined by several conditions, all of which, 
however, may be regarded as disturbing causes. For example if, into 
a main channel of fissure, several lateral fissures flow, it is found that 
along the main fissure or lode, it is productive of metallic ores at 
these parts. 

Several good examples of this are given in Mr. Wallace's beautifully 
executed map ; one of these we copy. It is a portion of the great 
Eodderup Fell vein, and shows that the lode is unproductive except 
where the numerous small lateral veins, as shown in our drawing, 
have been channels in which fluids have been collected and conveyed 
to the larger fissure. The vein has proved remarkably productive of 

lead in those parts. Mr. Wallace's book is a valuable contribution 
to the very limited literature which exists in the English language, on 
mines and mineral deposits. That attention has been a\^'akened to 
this question, is further proved from the fact, that at the last meeting 
of the Miners' Association of Cornwall, two Cornish miners contributed 
papers on the subject. 

Such are the matters of interest connected with British Mining, 
which have recently presented themselves. 

As illustrating the value of our mines in relation to those of other 
countries, it is satisfactory to be able to examine two very recently 

* 'The Laws which regulate the Deposition of Lead Ore in Veins : Ilhistnited 
by an Examination of the Greological Structure of the Mining Districts of Alston 
Moor.' By William Wallace. Edward Stanford, London. 

1864.] Mining, Mineralogy, and Metallurgy. 149 

publisliod returns, which have been issued by the Governments of Spain 
and Prussia. 

The number of productive mines, in Spain, in 18G2, was 1,798, 
cmph)ying 32,789 miners. The results of their hibours, and those of 
the smelter, were as follows :* — 

MiNEEAi^. Metals. 

Tons. Tons. 

Lead Ores . . . 355,750 C:i,71 1 

Copper „ . . . . 228,098 2,857 

Iron ...... 128,333 {^^^^^ jj^;?^? 

Zinc , 24,378 2,180 

Quicksilver Ores . 17,984 923 

Silver „ . 2,9U0 7^ 

Tin „ . 1,8G0 6^ 

Coal „ . 32ej,162 — 

Sulphur Ores . . 22,796 4,545 

Manganese „ . . 13,863 — 

Of the above quantities, the Government mines of Linares produced 
of lead-ore, 3,521 tons ; lead, 2,232 tons ; those of Eio Tinto of copper- 
ore, 79,037 tons, or 1,170 of fine copper; and the important mercury 
mines of Almaden, 11,191 tons of ore of Cinnabar, yielding of quick- 
silver, 894 tons. Although Spain produces the largest quantity of 
lead-ores, its produce of lead falls below that of Great Britain, 
owing to the poorness of the minerals, their average produce falling 
below 18 per cent., while the produce of the lead-ores of England 
averages about 70 per cent. 

The Prussian Government has published a valuable set of Mineral 
and Metallic statistics — being an account of the mineral production of 
the States for the ten years, 1852 — 61. f From this it appears that 
the total value of these products amounted in 1861, to 4,685,000Z. 
sterling. The number of mines worked were 2,304, and of workmen 
employed 115,341. Notwithstanding the insignificance of these 
retui'ns as compared with the mineral wealth of Britain, it is clear 
that the production of minerals in Prussia has increased more than 
six-fold during the past twenty-five years. 

The latest retm-ns furnished by the French Government of the 
production of " Metals other than Iron," show that in twelve depart- 
ments there existed 23 mines in which were employed 3,072 workmen. 
The value of the argentiferous lead produced was 1,545,365 francs — 
and of other metals, 601,623 francs. 

There are few sciences which move so slowly as Mineralogy — not- 
withstanding the Treatises by Dana, J by Brooke and Miller, § and the 

* ' Revista Minora.' Madrid, 1st Nov. 1863. 

t ' Zusammenstellung der stiitistiscben Ergebnisse des Bergwerks, Hiitten- 
und Salinen-Betriebes in dem Preussiscben Staate wahrend der Zebn Jabre von 
1852 bis 1861.' Beurbeitet von E. Altbaus. 4to. Berlin : 1863. 

t ' A System of Mineralogy ; comprising the most recent Discoveries.' By 
James D. Dana, A.M. 

§ 'An Elementary Introduction to Mineralogy.' By tlie late "William Phillips. 
New edition, with extensive alterations and additions by H. J. Brooke, F.R.S., 
F.G.S., and W. H. Miller, M.A., F.R.S., F.G.S. 

150 Chronicles of Science. [Jan 

Glossary by Bristow,* wliich last will be found one of the most useful 
of books to the young student in this interesting field, the science of 
minerals makes no advance. This is referable to the cumbrous, un- 
natural, and confusing nomenclature which besets it. To call oxide of 
tin, Cassiterite, because it is found in a place which probably was at 
one time called The Cassiteridcs,— and to name Copper-glance, or di- 
sulphide of copper, Medruthite, on the erroneous sui^position that the 
best specimens of this Mineral are found near Eedruth, is neither more 
nor less than absurd. It is hoped that the system of exact nomen- 
clature which has tended so much to advance Chemical science, will 
ere long be applied to Mineralogy. 

There has recently been published in Paris a valuable Manual of 
Mineralogy,"]" to which we direct the attention of students. It was, 
the author informs us, his first intention to have translated the ex- 
cellent work on this science by Brooke and Millei". He was, however, 
induced by some considerations, connected chiefly with the optical 
section of the science, to write a new book, of which the first volume 
only is published. To those students of Mineralogy who desire to 
enter earnestly on the study of Crystallogi'aphy — and the optical 
characters of crystals — this Manual will be a valuable aid. The 
completeness with which the localities of the mineral described are 
given, renders this work an example to some of our English Mineralo- 
gists, who have not shown the requisite caution in determining these 
with exactness. Indeed, by trusting to some of these, M. Des Cloizeaux 
has occasionally been led astray. 

Dr. Wedding, of Bonn, has directed attention to an ore of alumi- 
nium occui"ring at Baux, near Avignon ; hence it has been named 
Bauxite. According to Meissionier, it penetrates the chalk as a vein- 
like mass for a length of nearly two miles. This ore has been mistaken 
for an iron ore, and employed as such. It consists essentially of 
alumina and peroxide of iron — which reciprocally replace each other 
— and water. It contains also small quantities of silicic acid, tita- 
nium, and vanadium ; some varieties contain about 80 per cent, of 
alumina, and others almost as much oxide of iron. This ore is 
applied by MM. Morin and Co. of Nanterre, and Messrs. Bell of 
Newcastle, to the manufacture of aluminium. 

The discovery of rock-salt at Middleton-on-Tees, by Messrs. 
Bolchow and Vaughan, is of great probable importance. A bed of 
rock-salt 99 feet in thickness has been pierced by boring at the 
depth of 1,206 feet from the surface. Mr. Marley's pajDer on this 
discovery, which was read at the Newcastle Meeting of the British 
Association, is about to be published in a revised form by the 
Institute of Mining Engineers — to this we shall again refer. 

Professor N. S. Maskelyne and Dr. Viktor Von Lang, of the 
British Museum, have contributed some interesting notices of Aerolites, 
which are supj)osed to have fallen mthin recent years. | These 

* * A Glossary of Mineralogy.' By Heiny "William Bristow, F.G.S. 

t ' Manuel do Miiieralogie.' Par A. Des Cloizeaux, Tom. i. Paris : Dunod. 

X • Philosophical Magazine,' August, 1863. 

18G-1.| Mining, Mineralogy, and Metallurtjy. 151 

notices wore commenced in No. 1G5 of the ' Pliilosoplncal Maj^azinc,' 
by a pai)or ' on Aerolites,' which included notices of a fall of stones at 
Butsura, in India, in May, 1861. Their more recent paper contains 
an account of two other meteorites. One of these stones fell at Kliira- 
gurh, 28 miles' south-east of Bhurtpoor, on the 28th March, 18G0. 
Another — of which a more detailed account is given — fell on the 
16th August, 1843, at Manegamn, in the collectorato of Khandeish, 
in India. 

Of the Manegaum stone, some fragments, amounting only to 
2^ ounces, have been preserved in the collection of the Asiatic Society 
of Bengal, at Calcutta,* and a specimen is deposited in thu British 
IMuseum. The evidence of the fall of this stone is given in the 
following words : — 

" Two villagers described the fall as having been witnessed by 
them. There had been several claps of thunder with lightning some 
two hours previously, and the northern heavens were heavily charged 
with clouds ; but no rain had fallen for eight days before, nor did any 
fall for four days after, the event. Their attention was arrested by 
' several heavy claps of thunder and lightning,' and they ran out of 
a shed to look around, when they saw the aerolite fall in a slanting 
direction from north to south ' preceded by a flash of lightning.' 
It buried itself 5 inches in the ground, and appeared as a mass of 
about 15 inches long, and 5 inches diameter. It exhibited a black 
vitreous exterior, and was of a greyish yellow inside. At first, the 
observers stated it to have been (as is recorded of the Bokkeveldt 
aerolite) comparatively plastic, and at any rate to have become more 
hard and compact subsequently. There was only one stone seen, and 
that was smashed to pieces. Another witness mentioned that the 
stone was at first cool, but in a short time became rather warm." 
The evidence which is being accumulated by Shepard, Haidinger, and 
others, added to the chemical and physical examinations to which 
these aerolites have been subjected, by Rose, Maskelyne, and Lang, is 
advancing our knowledge of the peculiarities which belong to those 
remarkable bodies. The chemical constitution and the lithological 
characteristics of a peculiar class of stones, appear to prove their 
meteoric origin. It must, at the same time, be evident to all, that 
the utmost caution is necessary in examining all the evidence brought 
forward as descriptive of the phenomena accompanying the fall of 
stones through the atmosphere — and that, especially, which has led to 
the assmuption that certain physical and chemical peculiarities are 
characteristic of, and unmistakably indicate, a true meteoric origin. 

Dr. C. T. Jackson, of Boston, U.S., gives us some interesting 
particulars of a mass of Meteoric Iron from the Dakota Indian terri- 
tory. It was found on the surface of the ground, 90 miles from any 
road or dwelling, and from its presenting a bright sm-face when cut, 
it was thought to be silver. A portion of about 10 lbs. weight was 
broken from the original mass, which weighed about 100 lbs. This 

* ' Proceediugs of the Asiatic Society of Bengal' for 1844 contains the first 
account of this aerolite. 

152 Chronicles of Science. [Jan. 

was subjected to analysis, and its meteoric character supposed to be 
determined. The constitiients of the Aerolite were — 

Metallic Iron 91-735 

Nickel .... 6-532 

Tin 063 

Phosphorus 0-010 

Cobalt and chrome were also detected.* 

We have already given the value of the Metallurgical products of 
British ores ; there is little of novelty in the furnace operations to which 
they are subjected. Although numerous patents have been completed, 
and notices of many more given, for imj)rovements in the processes of 
smelting the several metallic ores, tliere is scarcely anything of suffi- 
cient importance to require special not-'ce. One Patent for " separating 
Silver and other Metals from Lead," founded on a principle discovered 
by M. Clement Eoswag, Engineer, of Paris, promises to be successful. 

In carrying out this invention, the first operation consists in fusing 
the lead containing silver and incorporating zinc therewith. For 
this pm-pose a suitable furnace is provided with a melting-pot or 
vessel, in which the lead and zinc are melted, the zinc being placed in 
suitable tubes or holders, and deposited, after the lead is melted, at the 
bottom of the vessel, so that as it melts it rises up through the molten 
lead by reason of its less specific gravity, and by means of agitators it 
is uniformly distributed in its passage through the fluid lead. When 
the whole of the zinc is melted and has risen to the surface of the 
molten lead, the zinc holders and the agitators are removed from the 
vessel, and the alloy of zinc and silver is skimmed off the surface, to 
be operated upon in the ordinary manner by oxidation. The molten lead, 
which now contains a small percentage of zinc, is next run off into the 
hollow of a reverberatory fm-uace, such as is generally used for an- 
nealing and refining lead, and the ziney lead is purified by keeping it 
in a state of fusion at a dull red heat, and subjecting it to the action 
of the vapours or gases arising from the burning or decomposition of 
pieces of green wood enclosed in suitable tubes or holders below the 
surface of the molten lead ; the dross of the zinc (called seconds) is 
skimmed off during the process, and is added to the alloy of zinc and 
silver previously obtained. The lead thus refined is run into ingots 
for sale or use. 

Under the name of Wasium, a new Metal has been recently an- 
nounced by M. Bahr, as existing in the Orthite of Norway. M. Nickles 
denies the reality of the discovery — according to him, the supposed 
new simple body is but impure Yttrium. 

We expected to have examined Dr. Percy's second volume of Me- 
tallurgy, which will be devoted to Iron and Steel ; although long since 
announced, it is not yet ready for publication. We may, however, 
safely predict that this work will be a valuable contribution to the 
Metallurgy of iron. 

The late Exhibition furnished many striking illustrations of the 
importance of mechanical improvements to the worker in Metals. 

* ' The American Joru-nal of Science and Arts.' Conducted by Professor 
B. Silliman and others. No. 107, September, 1863. 

1864.J Mining, Mineralogy, and Metallurgy. 163 

This has been most strikingly shown in the application of mechanical 
engineering to several branches of iron ruanufactiu'e. 

There are few things wliicli illustrate the giant power of machinery 
more entirely than the mannfacturc (jf armour-i)lates. A number of 
scientific men, and some of the Lords of the Admiralty, witnessed 
recently a great experiment with some new Kolling Mills belonging 
to John Brown of Sheffield. These rolls have a first foundation of 
no less than 60 tons of solid iron, resting on masonry carried far 
below the earth. The rollers themselves are 32 inches in diameter, 
and 8 feet wide, and are turned by an engine of 400-horse power. 
A powerful screw, applying its force through compound levers, 
allows the distance between the rollers to be adjusted to the frac- 
tion of an inch, so that the plate which on its first rolling, is 
forced through an interval of — for instance — 12 inches apart is, on 
its next, wound through one of ten inches, next through one of 
8 inches, and so on imtil the required thickness has been carefully 
and equally attained by compression through every jjart of the metal. 
When the enormous mass of iron to be rolled was first taken from 
the heating fm'nace, and brought to the rollers, it was found that they 
did not bite directly the mass came to them, and when they did, the 
engine was ahnost brought to a stand-still by the tremendous strain 
upon it ; but at last the soft jilate yielded, and the rollers wound it 
slowly in, squeezing out jets of melted iron, that shot about as the 
pile was compressed from 19 inches to 17 inches by the force of the 
rollers. From the time the mass had once passed through the mill, 
it was kept rolling backwards and forwards, the workmen sweeping 
from its face the scales of oxide that gathered fast upon it. Every 
time the plate was passed through, the rollers were squeezed closer 
and closer together, imtil at the end of a quarter of an horn- from leaving 
the f imiace, an almost melted mass, it was passed through the rolls for 
the last time, and came out a finished armom'-j^late, weighing 20 tons, 
19 feet long, nearly 4 feet wide, and exactly 12 inches thick through- 
out from end to end. 

Attention has been directed by Lieut-Colonel H. Clerk, E.A., to 
a matter of some engineering importance, " The Change of Form 
assumed by Wrought Iron and other Metals when Heated and then 
Cooled by partial Immersion in Water." The experiments recorded 
in a conmiunication made by Colonel Clerk to the Koyal Society 
originated in this way : — 

" A short time ago, when about to shoe a wheel mth a hoop tire, 
to which it was necessary to give a bevel of about -|th of an inch, one 
of the workmen suggested that the bevel could be given by heating the 
tire red hot, and then immersing it one-half its depth in cold water. 
This was tried and found to answer perfectly, that portion of the tire 
which was out of the icater being reduced in diameter." These experi- 
ments have an important bearing on many engineering problems ; the 
general result appears to prove that metals heated to redness, and 
partially cooled, by having one portion only placed in cold water, 
contract about one inch above the water line, and that this is the same, 
whether the metal be immersed one-half or two thirds of its depth. 

154 Chronicles of Science. [Jan. 


By far the most important subject wliicli has arisen in this branch 
during the last quarter, or, indeed, for many years past, is the alleged 
discovery of photographs taken half a centiu'y before the recognized 
birth of this art. An immense mass of evidence, direct and collateral, 
has been collected together in the most conscientious and energetic 
manner by Mr. Smith, Ciu'ator of the Patent Museum, and it certainly 
affords strong grounds for the presumption that no less than three, if 
not four, distinct classes of pictures, each by a different process, pro- 
duced about the year 1790, are now in existence, there being the 
strongest circumstantial evidence that they are bond fide photographs. 
One is on a silver plate, pronounced by leading members of the Pho- 
tographic Society to be an undoubted photograph from nature, the 
subject being Mr. Boulton's house, which was pulled down in 1791 ; 
the pictiu'e was found amongst papers in Mr. Boulton's library, which 
had not been disturbed during the present centmy. There are also 
two pictures — one of them undeniably a photograph — which were 
found by Miss Meteyard amongst papers supplied to her for the 
purpose of writing a life of Wedgwood, the great j)otter ; and from 
documents of that date they are said to have been produced by the 
younger Wedgwood, reference being made to a lens, camera, and 
chemicals. There is also the hearsay evidence of an old retainer of 
the Boulton family, lately dead, of the silver pictiu-e of Mr. Boulton's 
house having been taken by placing a camera on the lawn ; and there 
was a society called the ' Lunar Society,' the members of which were 
said to produce pictm-es by using a dark room, throwing the images 
on to a table, and fixing them by some chemical. The whole subject 
has recently been brought before the Photographic Society, and, on a 
careful analysis of the evidence, there is the very strongest presump- 
tion, short of absolute certainty, that this important discovery was 
made, and then suffered to die out. Only a few links in the chain are 
wanting to establish the actual proof, and from the intense excitement 
the subject has now occasioned, there is little doubt that it will be 
sifted to the bottom. 

The measurement of the chemical action of light has lately received 
considerable attention. Dr. Phipson * has published a process which 
appears to promise very good results ; it is based upon the fact, that a 
solution of sulphate of molybdic acid is reduced by the action of light 
to a lower state of oxidation ; and by measui'ing this amount of reduc- 
tion by chemical means, a correct estimate of the amount of actinism 
used up in the operation is obtained. The measurement is done with 
a standard solution of permanganate of ])otash ; and Dr. Phipson 
states that his observations have disclosed the fact, that the amount of 
actinism during the day varies considerably, describing curves, which 
are not only irregular, but sometimes present sudden deflections of 
considerable extent. This phenomenon has been noticed before. 
During the last summer many correspondents of the ' Photographic 
* 'Chemical News,' vol. viii. p. 135. 

1861.] Photography. 155 

News ' hiivo stilted tliat, on ccrtaiu days during particular hourH, there 
seemed to be an total absence of actinic force. In some in- 
stances five and six times the ordinary exposure were given with very 
imjierfect results ; and in other instances twenty times wore tried with 
no etFect. No particular atmospheric influence could be detected at work; 
and on subsequent days, apparently identical in light and clearness, 
photographic operations were conducted with their usual celerity. 
The cause of this great variation appears to have some connccti(jn 
with the dryness of the atmosphere, the days on which the absence of 
actinism was most marked having been intensely hot and free from 
humidity. It is much to be desired that a simple system of actino- 
metry should come into general use. The processes of Draper, Niepce 
de St. Victor, Bunsen and Eoscoe, Hcrschel, Phipson, and others, are 
very useful, but rather too tedious for general use. What we want is 
some method of reading off the arnoimt of actinism as simj^ly as we 
read off the amount of heat with the thermometer. 

A most elaborate series of researches on the behaviour of chloride, 
bromide, and iodide of silver in the light, and on the theory of photo- 
graphy, has recently been published by M. H. Vogel.* The researches 
have extended over three years, and are of the most exhaustive cha- 
racter. We have only space to give some of the bare results which he 
has obtained, and must refer ou;." readers for further particulars to the 
original memoir. The author considers that the action of light upon 
chloride and bromide of silver is first the production of a subchloride 
and subbromide, with liberation of chlorine and bromine, but that 
the iodide of silver undergoes no chemical change whatever. The 
action of acids and various saline solutions, especially nitrate of silver, 
has been studied very carefully, and some of the results are of con- 
siderable value. The effect of developing agents has been likewise 
examined, and the whole memoir constitutes one of the most im- 
portant contributions to the science of photogra|)hy ever published. 

A valuable improvement has been inaugurated in the manufactm-e 
of lenses for photographic pui-poses. By the ordinary method of 
grinding and polishing, the surface is not left in a state of perfection 
anything approaching that required for astronomical glasses. For the 
usual photographic processes this sm-face is quite good enough, al- 
though, when carefully examined with a powerfid glass, it \W11 be seen 
covered with irregularities, the remains of the last stages of the grind- 
ing process. To attain greater perfection entirely different means have 
to be employed, and the costly natm'e of this operation is one reason 
why telescopic lenses are so valuable. For some purposes, however, in 
which it is absolutely necessary to get perfect delineation, as in the 
copying maps, &c., a lens ground in the ordinary way would be inap- 
plicable, and perfection must not be hoped for unless the lens possesses 
a perfectly continuous sjiherical surface with the highest possible 
polish. Mr. Osborn, the photographer to the Melbourne Government, 
who is engaged in copying maps for the Melboui-ne Survey Office, has 
just ordered a lens from Mr, DaUmeyer, the cost of which is to be 
* Poggendorf 's ' Aunalcn,' 1863, p. 497. 

156 Chronicles of Science. [Jan. 

250Z. It will be a triple achromatic, and tlie glasses will probably 
require months for their completion, during the whole of which time 
the grinding and polishing machinery will have to be moving under 
the personal suj)erintendeuce of one of the first practical opticians in 
England. The experiment is necessarily a costly one, and photo- 
graphers are naturally anxious to see if the result compensates for the 
enormous additional expense. The Melbourne Government deserve 
the thanks of all photographers for the spirit of enterprise they have 
shown in the matter. 

From time to time rock crystal lenses have been recommended on 
account of their superior transparency to the chemical rays of light. 
Mr. Grubb has put this theory to the test of experience, and finds that 
the difference is not so great as has been imagined ; for instance, a 
compound lens of the ordinary make transmits 87 for every 100 rays 
which the rock crystal allows to pass. It is therefore only 13 per 
cent, worse, whilst in flatness of field and achromatism, the glass lens 
is much superior. 

M. Gaudin suggests that lenses should be made from fused rock 
crystal. The mauufactui-e of these is simply a question of expense, 
and they might possibly be achromatized by the employment of other 
suitably transparent minerals. 

A new fixing agent, sulpho-cyanide of ammonium, is likely ere 
long to supersede hyposul2)hite of soda. The advantages claimed are, 
permanence of the j)rint, and great facility in the washing operations ; 
but, on the other hand, the expense is likely to be an objection. A 
little time ago, the new agent cost 4s. an ounce ; there are rmnours 
that it can nov/ be procured in Paris for Is. lIcZ. per lb., although we 
have been quite unable to obtain any at this price, and Mr. Spence, 
the manufacturing chemist of Manchester, has jiist erected large ap- 
paratus, by means of which he hopes to supjjly the sulpho-cyanide at 
even a less price. We may therefore reasonably anticipate that sulphur 
toning, yellow whites, and fading positives, will soon have gone the 
way of the Dodo and Megatherium. 

Celestial photograj)hy is making great strides on the other side of 
the Atlantic. Dr. Henry Draper has just completed a large reflecting 
telescope, 16 inches in apertui-e, and 13 feet focus, which he intends 
to devote to this branch of science. The mirror is of glass, covered at 
Sir John Herschel's suggestion, with a film of precipitated silver. It 
is sustained in a walnut tube, hooked with brass, and specially mounted 
to avoid tremor. When in use the instrument is allowed to be at rest, 
clockwork being used only to drive the sensitive plate. By this means, 
only 1 oz. instead of half a ton, is moved. A photographic laboratory 
is attached to the observatory, and the apparatus is arranged to take 
photographs of the moon as large as 3 feet in diameter, being on a scale 
of less than 50 miles to the inch. From the reputation which Dr. 
Draper has already earned as a photographer and physical philo- 
sopher, we are justified in expecting that celestial photography will 
advance rapidly in his hands. 

1864. 1 Physics. 157 


Light, Heat, and Electricity. 

Light.— The cause of the scintillations of stars has long been a 
puzzle, not only to children, but to philosophers. Many explanations 
have been given, but none are quite satisfactory. Mr. A. Claudet * 
has thrown some new light upon this subject, by an instrument which 
he has devised, called the chrcmaatoscope. He attributes the beautiful 
sparkling, with changing colours, exhibited by certain stars on a clear 
night, to the evolution in different degrees of swiftness of the various 
coloui-ed rays they emit. These rays are supposed to divide dm-ing 
their long and rapid course through space, and we see them following 
each other in quick succession, but so rapidly that, although we see 
distinctly the various colours, we cannot judge of the separate lengths 
of their duration. Mr. Claudet's instrument consists of a reflecting 
telescope, part of which is caused to rotate eccentrically in such a 
manner, that instead of a point a ring-like image of the star is seen. 
The rapidity of rotation is adjusted so that each separate colour 
given by the star is drawn out into a large segment of the ring, and 
in that manner the light from the star can be analysed as in a spectro- 

In observing the rays of sunlight through a powerful spectroscope 
many additional lines are visible when the sun is near the horizon. 
These are called telluric rays, as they have been shown to owe their 
existence to some components of the earth's atmosphere. Father 
Secchi, the Eoman Astronomer, considers that aqueous vapour in the 
atmosphere is the principal cause of these tellui-ic rays, and this 
opinion has been generally adopted by physicists : but M. Volpicelli f 
now describes experiments to prove that these rays are independent of 
the presence or absence of aqueous vapom* in the atmosphere. In our 
opinion his experiments are scarcely conclusive ; for it is quite reason- 
able to suppose that the passage of light through 100 miles of atmo- 
sphere might produce effects which could not be imitated in a labora- 
tory experiment. 

The determination of the refracting power of various transparent 
liquids and solids, a matter of considerable practical importance, is 
usually effected by reference to certain well-known lines in the solar 
spectrum. It would be much easier to have recoxu'se to the bright 
spectral lines of coloured flames, which are obtainable with ease at any 
time, whereas the employment of Fraunhofer's lines is dependent on 
the weather. For acciu-ate experiments it is necessary to know the 
length of the waves for the difterently coloured rays, and this informa- 
tion has been supplied by Dr. J. Muller,| by means of one of Nobert's 
Asell-divided glass screens. His results show that the length of wave 

* ' Phil. Mag.' No. 175. 

t ' Cosmos,' vol. xsiii. p. 430. 

:J: roggendorfs 'Aumilen,' vol, cxviii. p. 641. 

158 Chronicles of Science. [Jan, 

of the red lithium line is 0-0006733 millimetres. The wave length 
of the yellow sodium line is 0*0005918 millim ; * that of the green 
thallium line is 0*0005348 millim, whilst that of the blue strontium 
line is 0*0004631 millim. 

Perhaps the most powerful spectroscope in the world has recently 
been constructed by Professor Cooke. It has nine bisulphide of carbon 
prisms, which are constructed of cast-iron, with parallel sides of glass, 
special precautions being taken to remedy the curvatm-e of the glass 
plate from the hardening of the glue. The nine prisms are almost 
optically perfect, and the light is bent by them through nearly 360*^. 
By its means Professor Cooke has established the following points : — 
1. The lines of the solar spectrmu are as innumerable as the stars ; 
at least ten times as many being visible as are shown in Kirchhoff's 
Chart, with an infinitude of nebulous bands, just on the point of being 
resolved. No less than nine additional lines are seen enclosed within 
the fixed line D, one being nebulous and showing signs of resolva- 
bility under further increase of power. 2. It proves that the coinci- 
dences between the metallic lines of artificial spectra and the corres- 
ponding dark lines of the solar spectrum remain perfect under this 
increase of optical power. The two sodium lines can be spread out 
so as to allow of the thousandth part of the intermediate space being 
distinguished, and still their coincidence with the Fraiinhofer lines is 
absolute, 3. Many of the bands of metallic spectra are broad coloured 
spaces crossed by bright lines ; this is especially the case in the calcium, 
barium, and strontium spectra. 

Some reliable experiments on the photometric value of the electric 
light have been published by Professor W. B. Eogers.j The battery was 
very powerful, consisting of 250 carbon elements, each having an active 
zinc surface of 85 square inches. They were gi'ouped in fine battalions 
of 50 each, and the light was obtained in an apartment where a range 
of about 50 feet could be obtained for the photometric apparatus. In- 
stead of an ordinary standard light, equivalent to 20 candles, a unit 
was substituted ten times as great, equal therefore to 200 candles. By 
a series of experiments with the naked electric light unaided by a re- 
flector, it was foimd that its intensity was from 52 to 61 times as great 
as the standard light, making it equal in illuminating power from 10,000 
to 12,000 standard sperm candles. With the rays concentrated by a 
parabolic reflector, its illuminating force had a value equal to several 
millions of candles all pouring forth their light at the same time. The 
only previous measurement of the illuminating power of the electric 
light which we can call to mind is one given by Bimsen. This was 
taken with a less powerful battery (48 cells), and the photometric 
equivalent was estimated at 572 candles ; giving a proportion of 12 
candles to the cell, whilst Professor Eogers' estimate gives the ratio 
of 40 candles to the cell. 

* Fraiinhofer's measurement for the dark line D of the solar spectrum gave it 
a wave length of 0-0005888. 

t ' Silliman's Journal,' vol. xxxvi. p 307. 

1864.] Phyaics. 159 

An improved process for silvering glass for telescopic purposes has 
been published by M. Martin.* Jle uses four licpids : — The first 
being a 10 per cent, solution of nitrate of silver ; the second, liquor 
ammouiae sp. gr. 'DTO ; the third, a 4 i)er cent, solution of caustic 
soda ; and the fourth, a 12^ per cent, solution of white sugar, to which 
he adds a ^ per cent, of nitric acid, and after 20 minutes' ebullition 
adds 25 parts of alcohol, and water to make up the bulk to 250. The 
silvering liquid is made by mixing together twelve parts of solution 1 ; 
then eight parts of No. 2 ; next twenty parts of No. 3 ; then sixty parts 
of distilled water ; and finally, in twenty-four liom-s' time, ten parts of 
No. 4. The object to be silvered is then to be immersed in, when it 
w^ill be immediately covered with a film of reduced silver, which in ten 
or fifteen minutes' time will be sufficiently thick for use. After having 
been well washed with distilled water and di'ied, the siu'facc may be 
polished with chamois leather and rouge. 

During some researches on the compomids of mercury with the 
organic radicals, Dr. Frankland and Mr. B. Duppa discovered a sub- 
stance which they call mercuric methide. This body is a transparent 
colourless liquid, of the specific gravity of 3-069, so heavy, in fact, that 
dense lead glass floats upon its siu-face. It has been suggested by Mr. 
Spillcr that this would be an admirable liquid for fluid jnisms. At pre- 
sent the only substance suited for this j)urpose is bisulphide of carbon, 
which is not half the density, besides being objectionable on account of 
its oflensive odour, its great volatility, and easy ignition. Mercuric 
methide is suj^erior to bisulphide of carbon in all these respects, and 
its preparation in quantity would not be attended with any particular 

A most ingenious application of some well-known facts connected 
with the reflection of light by prisms, has been brought forward by 
Mr. Henry Swan, at the meeting of the British Association. He takes 
two rectangular prisms of flint glass, placed with their widest sides in 
contact. The two copulfe of a stereoscopic picture are placed in con- 
tact with this combination, one being at the back and the other at the 
side. Upon now viewing this arrangement with the two eyes, the 
13icture at the back is seen only by one eye, whilst the side picture is 
the only one seen by the other eye, the result being that the picture 
appears projected into the centre of the block of glass, possessing as 
much apparent solidity as if it were a model cut in ivory. 

Heat. — The relation of radiant heat to aqueous vaj)our is being 
thoroughly investigated by Professor Tyndall.| He has found that 
pui'e dry air is almost perfectly transparent to heat-rays, but that, on a 
day of average humidity, the quantity of aqueous vapour diftused in 
London air produces upwards of sixty times the absorption of the air 
itself. This fact is of vast importance to meteorological science. Ten 
per cent, of the entii-e radiation of heat from the earth is absorbed by 

* ' Comptes Rendus,' vol. Ivi. p. 1044. 
t *Phil. Mag.' vol. sxvi. p. 30. 

160 Chronicles of Science. [Jan. 

the aqueous vapour which exists within 10 feet of the earth's surface 
on a day of average humidity. Wet weather, saturating the atmosj)here 
with vapour, acts as a warm blanket to the earth, whilst cold frosty 
weather, by drying the air, allows more heat to radiate from the earth, 
and ijroduces a still greater degree of cold. The relation which these 
facts bear to many obscm-e phenomena of climate is fully discussed by 
Professor Tyndall in the paper already mentioned. 

The destructive energy of hot water in steam-boiler explosions has 
been made the subject of an investigation by the Astronomer Royal.* As 
the result of many experiments, he concludes that the destructive energy 
of one cubic foot of water, at the temperature which produces a pressui'e 
of 60 lbs. to the square inch, is equal to that of 1 lb. of gunpowder. 

A very sensitive thermometer has been described by Dr. Joule. f 
It consists of a glass tube, 2 feet long and 4 inches in diameter, divided 
longitudinally by a blackened pasteboard diaphragm, with spaces of 
about an inch at the top and bottom. In the top space a bit of mag- 
netized sewing-needle, furnished with a glass index, is suspended by 
a single filament of silk. The arrangement is similar to that of a 
bratticed coal-pit shaft, and the slightest excess of temperatm'e of one 
side over that of the other occasions a circulation of air which ascends 
on the heated side, and, after passing across the glass index, descends 
on the other side. As a proof of the extreme sensibility of the instru- 
ment, it is able to detect the heat radiated by the moon. A beam of 
moonlight was admitted through a slit in a shutter, and as the ray 
passed gradually across the instrument, the index was deflected several 
degrees, showing that the air in the instrument had been raised a few 
ten-thousandths of a degree in temperature by the moon's rays. 

Many researches on the intensity of the electrical current developed 
by different thermo-electro pairs have been published by M. Edmond 
Becquerel ; he finds that the best thermo-electric couple is composed of 
platinum and palladium, the two metals being unaltered by heat, and 
the intensity of the cm-rent increasing regularly with the temperature. 
This electric pyrometer was compared with graduated air-thermo- 
meters, and by this means many high temperatures have been able to 
be expressed in centigrade degrees. We give a few : — The boiling 
point of sulphur is 448° ; the fusing point of silver is 916° ; the fusing 
point of gold, 1,037°; the fusing point of palladium, between 1,360° 
and 1,380° ; the fusing point of platinum, between 1,460° and 1,480= ; 
the highest temperature of a fragment of magnesia, before the oxy- 
hydrogen blow-pipe, 1,600° ; whilst the limit of temperature of the 
positive carbon of the voltaic arc is 2,000°. 

A convenient gas-furnace for experimental purposes has long been 
wanted. Many contrivances have been made having for their object 
the production of a furnace-heat with gas, but they have invariably 
required an artificial blast of air, thus rendering it necessary for one 
person to be in attendance, and hard at work, diu-ing the whole of the 

* British Association, Newcastle Meeting. 

t ' Proceedings of the Literary and Philosopliiciil Society of Mancliestcr.' 

1864.] PJiysicH. 161 

operation. Mr. Gore* Las cleBcribecl a new gas-furnace, which possesses 
many advantages over those hitherto used. It would be difficult to 
rdnder its construction intelligible without drawings ; but the value of 
it may be understood when we say that the smallest size will melt half- 
a-poimd of copper or six oimces of cast-iron in less than a quarter of 
an hour, at a cost of about .one halfpenny. The melted substances arc 
perfectly accessible to be manijjulated upon for a continuous and 
lengthened period of time, without contact with impurities or with the 
atmosphere, and without lowering their- temperatui-e sufficiently to cause 
them to solidify. Moreover, these advantages are sccui'ed by means 
of ordinary coal-gas and atmospheric aii-, withoixt the use of a bellows 
or a lofty chimney, or of regenerators or valves requiring frequent 

Electricity. — The passage of an electrical discharge through 
various gases and between electrodes of various metals, gives rise to 
different luminous phenomena. When this light is examined in the 
spectroscope, it has been found that each elementaiy gas or metal 
possesses certain well-marked characteristic lines, and it has generally 
been assumed : — 1. That each substance has a set of lines peculiar to 
itself. 2. That those lines are not produced or modified by any mole- 
cular agent except heat. 3. That the spectrum of one substance is 
in nowise modified by the presence of another ; in such cases both 
spectra co-existing independently, and are merely superposed. 4. That 
electricity does not make matter luminous directly, but only by heating 
it, so that the electric spectrum differs in nothing from that produced 
by heat of sufficient intensity. Dr. Robinson has examined these 
questions in a long and laborious investigation, and the result has been 
presented to the Koyal Society, in a Paper " On the Spectra of Electric 
Light." The oj^inion to which his results seem to point, is that the 
origin of the lines is to be referred to some yet undiscovered relation 
between matter in general and the transfer of electric action ; the places 
of the lines being invariably the same, but their brightness being 
modified according to circumstances. 

Since attention has been directed to the enormous variation in elec- 
tric conducting power, caused by the admixtm'e of even minute quan- 
tities of metallic or other impurities in copper, it has become a question 
of some interest to determine the electric conducting power of all the 
pixre metals. Professor Matthiessen f has continued his researches on 
this subject, and has lately determined the electrical relations of pui"e 
thallimn. At the freezing point of water this metal has a conducting 
power equal to 9-16 (piu-e silver being 100), and its conducting power 
decreases between the freezing and boiling jjoint, 31-420 per cent., 
which is a larger percentage decrement than that obtained for many 
other piu-e metals, namely, 29'307 per cent.ij: The conducting power 
of pure iron was found to be, at 0° C = 16-81, Avith a jiercentage decre- 
ment for an increase of temperatm'e to 100° C = 38-1. The conducting 

* ' Chemical News,' vol. viii. p. 2. 
t 'Philosophical Trausactions,' 1863. 
J ' Philosophical Transaclions,' Part. I., 1862. 
VOL. I. ai 

162 Chronicles of Science. [Jan. 

powers of the pure metals given in the following table, shows the places 
which the above metals take in the series. 

Conducting Power at 0". 

Silver 10000 

Copper 99-95 

Gold 77-96 

Zinc 29-02 

Cadmium ....... 23-72 

Cobalt 17-22 

Iron 16-81 

Nickel 13-11 

Tin . 12-3G 

Thallium 9-16 

Lead 8 32 

Arsenic 4-76 

Antimony 4-62 

Bismuth 1-245. 

It has long been a desideratum amongst electricians to obtain a 
battery ha-ving the constancy of Daniell's without the annoyance 
attending the use of a porous cell. Two such batteries have been 
described lately. One is the invention of M. Jacobini, and consists of 
a glass vessel, in which is placed a cylinder of copper pierced with 
holes ; outside this is a larger cylinder of zinc. The copper cylinder 
is filled with powdered sulphate of copper, tightly pressed down, and 
the remainder of the space in the glass vessel is filled with sand, 
touching the zinc cylinder on both sides. Water is then poured in, so 
as to satm'ate both the sand and j)owdered sulj^hate of copper, and the 
arrangement is covered up. Several hom-s elapse before the electric 
current begins to develope itself actively. It then increases for a few 
days, and finally sinks again till its power becomes constant. Father 
Secchi has had a battery of this kind in use for three months, and 
reports that it is as efficient as when fii'st constructed. 

The other battery is the invention of M. Grenet, and is a modi- 
fication of the sulphate-of-mercury pile of M. Marie-Davy. At the 
bottom of a glass jar a quantity of acid sulphate of mercury is placed. 
A stick of gas-carbon and a cylinder of zinc are supported upright in 
the jar by means of a cork, which closes the upper part of the vessel ; 
water is then carefully poured in, and the whole is set aside, where it 
will not be shaken or moved. A wire connected with the carbon forms 
the positive pole, whilst the zinc forms the negative pole. The water 
becoming gradually charged with sulphate of mercury, attacks the zinc ; 
the hydrogen which is evolved reduces the mercury on the carbon, and 
the metal as it accumulates falls do^vn to the bottom of the vessel. II 
the apparatus is not shaken, there are formed two layers of liquid — 
the lower one consisting almost entirely of a solution of the mercmy 
salt, whilst the upper layer contains the sulphate of zinc. It is o^^ing 
to this separation that the porous vessel is able to be dispensed with. 
The battery is employed of two sizes — the larger one contains 500 
grammes of water and 100 grammes of mercury salt ; the smaller con- 
tains respectively 100 grammes and 30 gi-ammcs. They are said to 
keep in perfect order for six months at a time, without once requiring 
to bo touched. 

18G1. 1 Sanatory Science. 163 


If wo were aakccl to state what it is tbat more especially characterizes 
the scicntilic Practitioner of Medicine of oui- own day, we should stato 
it to bo the strong desire whereby he is actuated to investigate the 
conditions which lead to the production of disease, the laws that re- 
gulate its propagation, and the means by which its exciting caurses may 
be diminished or altogether destroyed. The modern physician does 
not waste his energies or burn the midnight lamj) in anxious strivings 
after the philosopher's stone, in vain researches for some subtle elixir 
or fragrant balsam, with a few drops of which he might hope to charm 
away disease, to renew the life's blood, and impart to the frail and 
tottering form of age the vigom* and elasticity of youth. Neither does 
he now rely in his treatment of disease on complicated formulae, which 
like the once celebrated Mithridate of the ancients, consisted of some 
two score ingredients; nor on nauseous and disgusting remedies, whicli, 
like the oriental Bezoar stones, or the Album Grtecum, were invested 
with a reputed efficacy proportioned to the repulsiveness of their 
origin. All this is now changed. A striving after simplicity is the 
order of the day. The sufEcioncy of the natm'al processes of re- 
covery, when aided by a few appropriate remedies, is more widely 
recognized. The necessity of ensuring an abundant supply of fresh 
air, of practising social and personal cleanliness, of procuring a mo- 
derate yet sufficient quantity of food, and of guarding by precautionary 
measui'es against the special risks attendant on the pm-suit of certain 
occupations, is now loudly proclaimed. 

The importance of paying due attention to all such wise and simple 
sanatory regulations, is not only at the present time acceded to by the 
medical profession and the more intelligent of the general public, but 
has at length been fully recognized by the Legislature. The admir- 
able rejiorts which, in obedience to the Public Health Act for 1858, 
have now for a series of years been annually submitted to the Privy 
Council by their medical officer, Mr. Simon, have contributed in no 
small degree to the distribution of sound information on many of the 
causes that lead to the production of diseases, and on the means 
which ought to be taken to mitigate or prevent them. Of the many 
reports which have proceeded from his pen, there is none, we think, 
exceeding in general interest the one published in the aittumn of the 
past year.* It embraces careful inquiries into the efficacy of the pre- 
sent system of public vaccination, and particulars as to the supply and 
distribution of vaccine lymph ; into the diseases which may result from 
the pursuit of some industrial occupations ; into the influences probably 
exerted by the distress in the cotton-manufacturing districts in the 
production and spread of typhus and other starvation diseases ; on the 
effect produced on the human body by the cousiuBption of the milk or 
flesh of diseased animals, and on the best steps for lessening the pre- 
valence of disease amongst our domestic animals. As these subjects 

* Fifth Report of the Medical Officer of tlie Privy Council. London. ISiIS. 

164: . Chronicles of Science. [Jan. 

all possess a considerable scientific and practical value, it may not be 
without interest to examine into some of the leading conclusions to 
wbicli Mr. Simon has been led in the course of bis inquiries. 

The existence during the last few years of several wide-spread 
epidemics of small-pox, in different parts of the country, has caused 
much public attention to be directed to the working of the various 
statutes which the Legislature has enacted for the national protection 
against that disease. Doubts have even been thi'own by some on the 
efficiency of the vaccine matter at present employed. It has been as- 
sumed that its protecting powers have been, tln-ough long-continued 
transmission from one individual to another, worn ovit or greatly im- 
paired, and that a more frequent recom'se to the original soui'ce from 
which it was obtained ought to have been resorted to. But on this 
matter Mr. Simon speaks both decidedly and assuringiy. He re- 
quested Mr. Kobert Ceely, of Aylesbury, " to whom more than to any 
man, since Jenner, the medical profession of this country is indebted 
for its knowledge of the natural history of vaccination," to inspect all 
the sources whence lymph is conveyed to the National Vaccine Estab- 
lishment ; and the result of that inspection has been to assure Mr. 
Ceely " of the perfectly satisfactory character of the lymph there in 

Of the workings of the different enactments for ensuring a complete 
system of vaccination the report is anything but satisfactory — nay, 
the public defences against small-pox are in a great measure insuf&cient 
and delusive. The neglect of local authorities in enforcing vaccina- 
tion in the workhouses and schools under their control ; the imperfec- 
tion of the arrangements for providing at the public expense thoroughly 
good vaccination, so that it should be everywhere and gratis within 
reach of those who may choose to avail themselves of it ; and the 
omission in many cases to give the required notification of such 
arrangements, even when they may have been provided, have all ope- 
rated in bringing Mr. Simon to this conclusion. But now that attention 
has been directed to these cases of neglect in the working of the exist- 
ing machinery, it is to be hoped that means will be taken to ensiu*e a 
thorough vaccination of the people, and if needful to compel it. We 
are slow indeed in this coimtry to enact anything which may seem to 
impose an unnecessary restriction on personal liberty ; but the per- 
sonal liberty of the individual must always be subordinate to the 
general good. The welfare of the whole commimity is so closely con- 
nected with this questi(m of compulsory vaccination, that we should 
not regret to see the day when the production of a vaccination certifi- 
cate will bo as essential to holding any ofiicc, to gaining employment, 
or to obtaining admittance to a school, as an attestation of correct 
principles and good moral character. 

The diseases of animals employed as food by man possess an 
interest both in a sanatory and economic point of view. The in- 
fluence which the flesh of diseased animals exercises upon those who 
may consume it has for some time attracted attention. Many strong 
representations on this subject have been made by Professor John 
Gamgec, Principal of the New Veterinary College, Edinburgh, and in 

1864.] Sanatory Science. 166 

18G2 ho was requested by Mr, Simon to prepare a spceial report, which 
is iueludetl iu the volume. The result of the very elaborate inquiries 
which Mr. Gamgec has conducted has been to sliow that disease has 
prevailed dm'ing the last few years, and still prevails very extensively, 
amongst horned cattle, sheep, and swine, and that the diseased animals 
are largely employed as human food. The diseases with which these 
animals are affected may conveniently be classed under three heads : — 
1st, Contagious Fevers ; 2nd, Anthracic and Anthracoid Disorders ; 
3rd, Parasites. The chief forms of the contagious fevers are those 
which are more commonly known as the pleuro-pneumonia, or Ivmg 
disease, of horned cattle, and the aphthous fever, murrain, or foot and 
mouth disease, which attacks not only horned cattle but also sheep and 
swine. Small-pox also sometimes attacks sheep, and not many months 
ago an outbreak of it excited much alarm in Wiltshire. What influence 
then will the consummation of the flesh of animals so diseased have 
upon those consuming it ? Kepulsive though it may be to oui* notions 
to eat the flesh of animals which have died of such disorders, and 
though we may be inclined on a priori grounds to suppose it might 
generate disease in those who eat it, yet more extended investigations 
must be made before we can state absolutely what the disorders are 
which it induces in the human frame. 

The anthracic and antkracoid diseases are, it is said, frequently 
accompanied with peculiar changes, in some respects putrefactive, 
in the blood ; erysipelatious and carbuncular affections also sometimes 
occur, and the body of the animal may develope in itself a specific 
morbid poison, which, by inoculation, can be communicated to other 
animals, and cases have been recorded in which disease and even 
death in man have followed the use of cooked meat derived from 
animals suffering from anthrax. 

The parasitic diseases of the domestic animals are both numerous 
and imj)ortant. The so-called " measles " of the pig is nothing more 
than the diffusion of a parasite, the cysticercus cellulosfe, thi'ough the 
muscular system of the animal ; the " stm-dy " of the sheep is due to 
the development of the coenurus cerebralis in the brain ; the " rot " of 
sheep to the production of flukes, a species of distoma, in the liver ; 
a form of lung-disease is produced by the development in those 
organs of different kinds of strongylus ;* and the muscular system may 
be infested by multitudes of a minute microscopic worm, the trichina 
spiralis. Now, there can be no question that meat affected with one 
or other of the above parasites may become the source of disease in man. 
Observations on this head have been so multipKed that this statement 
may be made in the most positive manner. That most troublesome 
and annoying of all the worms infesting the human bowel, viz. the 
tapeworm, has been showTi by the researches of Von Siebold and 
Kiichenmeister to be derived from eating the flesh oi " measly " 
pork, the cysticercus cellulosfe of the pig becoming developed into 
the taenia solium of the human bowel : and by the ingestion of the 
coenui'us cerebralis, another form of taBnia, the ttenia cceniu'us is pro- 
duced. But perhaps the most cuiious of all these parasites is the 

* A uematoid worm. 

166 Chronicles of Science. [Jan. 

tricMna spiralis wMch infests the muscular system. So long as it 
remains in the muscle, it lies quietly coiled up in a spiral form in a 
small cyst. But as the recent investigations of Virchow, Leuckart, 
Zenker, and Turner have shown, when the flesh of an animal con- 
taining these woiTQS is swallowed, they become disengaged from their 
cysts, young worms develope in the interior of the females, and this 
takes place with such rapidity that in a few days the intestinal mucus 
becomes packed with multitudes of minute threadlike woians. Then 
from the intestines they migrate in swarms into the muscular system, 
and there enclose themselves in cysts possessing the same form as those 
with which their parents were enveloped. The flesh employed as hiunan 
food which is most frequently infested by the trichina is that of the 
pig, and more than one case has now been recorded in which violent 
symptoms, and even death, have followed the use of the flesh of the 
trichinatous pigs,* and Professor Leuckart has found that trichina 
meat retains much of its injurious properties, even after some amount 
of pickling and smoking. We may learn, then, from these instances, 
how imj)ortant it is that animals aflected with such parasitic diseases 
should not only most scrupulously be avoided as articles of hmnan 
food, but that their flesh should not even be given to other animals. 

The great diminution which has taken place in the supply of cotton 
and the consequent stoppage of the factories of our numerous Lan- 
cashire towns, by throwing many thousands of persons out of employ- 
ment, necessarily excited much anxiety not only as to how money was 
to be procured for their maintenance, but the best and most economical 
vray in which this money was to be sjDent. The rej)ort that typhus 
fever was making its apf)earance in some of the towns also excited 
attention and alarm, and in obedience to the wishes of the Lords of 
the Privy Council, Mr. Simon requested Dr. Buchanan and Dr. E. 
Smith to visit the disti'essed districts and rejDort upon the local pre- 
cautions taken to prevent that destitution which breeds disease, and to 
obtain more exact information with regard to the minute economics of 
diet. The report of Dr. E. Smith is of a most comjjlete and elaborate 
nature. He has in it endeavoui*ed to answer two important questions. 
1st. What is the minimum allowance of money to pm-ehase sufficient 
food for the maintenance of health ? 2nd. What is the best method 
of expending that allowance ? 

He has compiled a large collection of formulte and dietai'ies, with 
the wholesale prices and nutritive values of the articles employed. 
His estimates are based on the real amount of nutriment which is re- 
quired by these popidations ; viz. 30,100 grains of carbon, and 1,400 
grains of nitrogen, weekly. He suggests that relief should be ad- 
ministered in three ways — in money, cooked food, and uncooked food. 
From the actual experience of the people, it would appear that single 
persons now spend weekly 2s. 4^(1. each for food ; but in the case of 
families, where there are young children, the rate of expenditure is 

* As tliese pages arc going througli tlie press, we notice a paragraph in the daily 
pnblic prints, in wliich it is stated tiiat at Herrstadt, in Prussian Silesia, a large 
nunihor of persons who had eaten at dinner trichinatous pork, were taken suddenly 
and seriously ill, and that of tlicsc sixteen died. 

1864. j Sanatory Science. 167 

under Is. Tliis sum of 2s., at tho preseut rates of prices for food, ap- 
pears to be the dividing line between sufliciency and insufficiency, as 
by an expenditure below that sum, health cannot be maintained. There 
is also much interesting information on the comparative digestibility 
of certain foods, and on the influence which they exercise both on the 
secretions and excretions. This report of Dr. Edward Smith's we 
look ujion as a valuable contribution to the study of dietetics, and one 
which ought to be carefully perused by all who take an interest in 
providing economically a due quantity and variety of nutritious food 
for the poor and destitute. 

The effect produced by tho pursuit of certain occupations, on the 
health of the employed, has for some years past excited much attention. 

The prevalence of phthisis amongst file-makers, the tendency to 
bronchitic disorders exhibited by coal-miners, the paralytic affections 
and attacks of colic so frequent amongst workers in lead and its com- 
pounds, the diseases of the nervous system which attack looking- 
glass silverers, watch gilders, and others exposed to mercurial emana- 
tions, have long been subjects of discussion, and many ingenious plans, 
mechanical and otherwise, have been devised for warding off" the per- 
nicious effects resulting from the pursuit of such occupations. The 
increase which has of late years taken place in the industrial appli- 
cations of phosphorus, and of the compound of arsenic called emerald 
green, or Scheele's green, and the cases in which injm'ious, nay fatal, 
effects have been produced on those employed in their manufacture 
and use, induced Mr. Simon to request Dr. Bristowe and Dr. Guy to 
make inquiries and report thereon. From the careful examination 
which Dr. Bristowe has conducted into the methods employed in lucifer 
match-making — the chief industrial application of phosphorus, — he 
concludes that the disease of the jaw-bone, to which match-makers are 
especially liable, might be altogether avoided if amorphous instead of 
common phosphorus were employed, and that this form of match would 
possess the additional advantage of not being spontaneously combus- 
tible, and therefore not so liable to cause fires. There are, indeed, 
certain difficulties in the way of carrying out the application of the 
amorphous phosjihorus. But it is the opinion of Mr. Albright, one 
of the largest manufacturers of phosphorus, " that if the use of the 
common form were prohibited, the end would be attained completely 
in six months, to the satisfaction of the manufactm-ers and the public 

The recent extensive employment of emerald gi-een in the manu- 
facture of wall j)apers, coloiu'ed ornaments of confectionery, artificial 
leaves and flowers, green tarlatans for dresses, children's toys, &c., 
has afforded Dr. Guy abundant material for the prepai'ation of his in- 
teresting report. He makes many suggestions as to methods which 
might bo adopted to prevent or diminish the risk of poisoning by 
this pigment, and we recommend all those who may be connected 
with the different branches of industry in which this brilliant green 
is employed, to attend carefully to the conclusions to which he has 

At those two great scientific.Congresses, the British Association for 

168 Chronicles of Science. [Jau. 

the Advancement of Science, and tlie Social Science Association, 
•whicli now assemble every autumn in one or other of our large towns, 
various questions affecting public health were at their last meetings 
brought before their appropriate sections. To some of the most im- 
portant of these we will now refer. As was not imnatm-al, the meet- 
ing of the British Association last autumn in Newcastle, the centre of 
one of our most important coal-producing districts, called forth some 
interesting papers by Drs. Wilson, White, and B. W. Eichardson, on the 
habits and diseases of the miners, and on means which might be em- 
ployed for diminishing the evil effects of breathing noxious vapours 
and gases. An excellent paper by Dr. G. Eobinson, on organic 
effluvia, was also communicated, in which the author showed that those 
abnormal constituents of the atmosphere which are recognized under 
that term, may be resolved into four principal groups, viz.: — 1st. Gases 
and vapours formed during the decomposition of organic matter. 
2nd. Odoriferous particles siii generis. 3rd. Volatile organic matters 
not endowed with vitality. 4th. Living germs. On those last-named 
constituents of the atmosjjhere many valuable observations were made 
by Mr. James Samuelsou, whose suggestion that the atmosphere of 
hospitals should be tested microscopically for living germs, appears 
to us to be of much importance. 

The great Sepoy mutiny, &c., by necessitating a much larger number 
of European troops to be retained in India for defensive pvirposes 
than was formerly required, has compelled the attention of the autho- 
rities to the need of greater care in promoting and preserving the 
health of the soldiers stationed there, both in camp and barracks. 
Papers on this subject were read before the British Association by 
Drs. Bird, SteWart, Clark, and Camps, and at the Social Science As- 
sociation by Miss Nightingale and the Eev. Dawson Burns. From 
the report of the Eoyal Commission on the sanatory state of the army 
in India, it would apj)ear that the death rate amongst the British 
troops serving in India amounts to no less than 69 per 1,000 per 
annum. Now taking the strength of the British army in India at 
73,000, it follows that such an army woidd lose somewhat over 5,000 
men annually, equal to an entire brigade. And as in unhealthy sea- 
sons the death rate rises to double the above amount, we may well ask 
with Miss Nightingale, " Where are the 10,000 recruits to be found 
to fill up the gap of a single unhealthy year ? " and say with her, 
" that on the better preservation of the health of oiu* troops — hinges 
the very important social question, viz. — How the British race is to 
hold possession of India, and to bestow upon its vast population the 
benefit of her own civilization ? " This great mortality is due to two 
distinct sets of causes, for one of which the authorities are respon- 
sible ; the other is to bo ascribed to the personal habits of the men 
themselves. The building of barracks in bad situations, the crowding 
together of a large number of men, the insufficient supply of fresh 
water, the imperfect ventilation, and the deficient drainage are all 
causes of disease which are under the control of the Government, and 
for which it ought to be made responsible. 

The excessive use of animal food and ardent spirits ai'c those vices 

1864.] Sanatory Science. 169 

amongst the personal habits of the soklier which call most londly for 
correction and reform, and we cannot but think that if proper stejJH l)e 
taken, the mortality arising from them may be largely diminished. 
Experience has shown that the proj^er carrying out of sanatory prin- 
ciples in other i)arts of the globe in wliieh British troops are quartered, 
has succeeded in effecting great improvements in the health of the 
men, and we see no reason why the same good result should not follow 
the application of the same principles in our Indian emjjire. 

We cannot close this brief resume of some of the most important 
recent contributions to Sanatory Science, without directing attention 
to the suggestive address on many matters connected with public 
health, delivered at the Edinburgh meeting q£ the Social Science 
Association, to the department over which he presided, by Professor 

In this address Dr. Chi-istison inquires into the mode in which 
the principal diseases or groups of diseases are influenced by the 
agents which affect public health. One of the most remarkable facts 
which he elucidates is the total disapj)earance of ague which has of late 
years taken place in Scotland, a country in which at one time it was 
very common. This disappearance does not indeed seem to be coin- 
cident with the di-ainage and agi-icultural improvements which have 
been carried on so energetically there for many years past ; for the 
decline in the disease took place before such improvements were car- 
ried out. The co-existence of tyi)hus fever with deficient ventilation 
and cleanliness and want of work is forcibly pointed out, but the de- 
cline which has of late years taken jilace in Edinbm-gh in the number 
and fatality of the visitations of this disease is ascribed by the Pro- 
fessor to changes in the type or constitution of epidemic diseases, 
rather than to any satisfactory improvement in the cleaning of the 
lanes and houses of the working classes. In the case of the typhoid 
or enteric fever. Dr. Christison thinks that something more is to be 
looked for in endeavoui-ing to decide upon its mode of origin than ill- 
drained streets, defective water-closets, and ford air. All these cir- 
cmnstances certainly favour its invasion, but its true cause lies in 
something more specific, and whilst better di-ainage and more perfect 
ventilation ought to be encom'aged, yet they alone are not sufficient to 
extirpate enteric fever. These statements are in opposition to much 
that recent wi-iters, both medical and non-medical, have been for 
many years back strongly inculcating, and, as was naturally to be ex- 
pected, have not been allowed to pass unchallenged. But we cannot 
help thinking that as the deliberately expressed opinions of a phy- 
sician, who has possessed opportunities of studying fever second to no 
man, they are deserving of much careful consideration. From a sta- 
tistical comparison of the mortality of the large towns of Scotland with 
the agricultural counties, the greater frequency of the diseases de- 
pendent on a depraved state of the constitution in the former than 
the latter is, as might naturally be expected, clearly proved. The 
address concludes by showing that the Western Islands of Scotland, 
in spite of their mist-laden atmosphere and exposed position, enjoy 
an almost complete immunity from pulmonary consumption. 

170 Chronicles of Science. [Jan. 


Professor Owen has made a Eeport upon the departments of Natural 
History in the British Museum for the year 1862, which speaks favour- 
ably of the general condition of the collection as to preservation, 
though, as far as the stored animals in the vaiQts — many thousands in 
nmnber — are concerned, each successive year of such storage increases 
the difficulty of keeping the specimens in a good state. The skins 
of Mammalia and Birds are in good condition, and available for scien- 
tific examination, though exhibiting some signs of the effects of damp. 
The Insects and Crustacea are also easily available, and in good con- 
dition ; but the MoUusca in spirits are so crowded, that access to the 
specimens not in the front row is diiScult and hazardous, and their 
utility greatly abridged. The exhibited specimens in the various 
galleries are described as showing only the degree of detriment which is 
inevitable from exposure, with the utmost amoimt of care ; but these 
are in general so crowded as to impair their utility. The additions 
to the Zoological department in the yeal- 1862, were 13,129 in number, 
including several great rarities and valuable specimens, such as Troglo- 
dytes vellerosus, a new anthrojjoid ape, discovered by Captain Burton 
in the Cameroon moimtains of West Tropical Africa ; a new tortoise 
{Cyclemys Mouliotii), from the Lao Mountains in Cochin China ; three 
or four new species of crocodiles; 1,911 fishes have also been added, 
many of them new species, and of them 128 have been placed in the 
British Collection. 

M. Thury, Professor in the Academy of Geneva, has made a dis- 
covery, which, if it be corroborated, will be one of the utmost value 
in the farm and homestead. He has arrived at a formula for obtaining 
cattle of either sex at ivill. The duration, character, and signs con- 
nected with the period of heat in the cow upon which it is proposed 
to experiment must be first ascertained. These being known, in 
order to ensure a cow-calf congress must be effected on the first ap- 
pearance of the access of this period ; while a bull-calf may be as 
certainly ensured, by making use of the termination of this period. 
It is necessary to exclude from the experiment those animals in which 
the signs of heat are vague and uncertain, as is observed in fat cattle, 
and confined individuals ; but healthy cows, and those living in the 
open air, must be used for the purpose. The experiments made upon 
cattle at Montet, appear to have been decisive, if we may judge from 
the following results: — "In the first place," says the breeder, "in 
twenty-two successive cases I have sought to obtain heifers ; my cows 
were of the Schwitz race, and my bull pure Durham blood. I obtained 
the result sought for in every case. Having later purchased a Durham 
cow, I sought to obtain a piu-e Durham bull-calf, and succeeded, and 
have since obtained six other bulls, crossed between Dui'ham and 
Schwitz. Altogether, I have made twenty-nine experiments, and 
every one has given the result sought." The importance of such a 
law will be evident, — and especially will such results be valuable in 

18G4. 1 Zoology and Physiology. 171 

countries where it is Jcsirablo to obtain oxen for working pni-poses ; 
as in others, cows are the most valued animals. Moreover, the same 
remarks will apply to sheep. 

A series of experiments is about to be conducted on the Imperial 
ftirm at Vincennes, in order to test the value and truth of the discovery. 

While on the subject of cattle, it may be well to refer to a practice 
adopted by M. Charlier, for the suppression of horns, an operation 
Avhich may sometimes bo of great advantage. In the early montlis of 
life, when the rudiment of the horn begins to appear, it may be done 
without danger or expense, the owner himself operating with facility. 
The instrument used is a kind of trephine, a small cylinder of good 
steel, with a sharj) cutting edge at one end and a point at the other. 
This instrument is placed around the young horn, bearing sufficiently 
on it to cut through the skin and subjacent tissue at the base of the 
horn, and then everting the soft horn, which offers no resistance. The 
wound heals in a few days afterwards without suppuration, and gene- 
rally without any febrile symptoms. 

In the beautiful and elaborate Memoir published by the Smithsonian 
Institution (Smithsonian Contributions to Knowledge, xiii. 169), en- 
titled ' Eesearches upon the Anatomy and Physiology of Eesj)iration 
in the Chelonia,' by Drs. Weir Mitchell, and G. E. Moorehouse, some 
curious errors of previous writers are pointed out with regard to the 
respiratory movements in Turtles. All writers upon this subject, 
including Malpighi, Cuvier, Johannes Miillcr, Milne Edwards, Agassiz, 
&c., appear to have described the act of breathing to be performed by 
them thus : — by the depression of the hyoid apparatus and tongue 
air is di-awn into the mouth through the nostrils, which are then 
closed ; and by raising the hyoid, air is driven from the mouth through 
the glottis and trachea into the lungs, when inspiration is completed. 
Expiration being effected by the contraction of the abdominal muscles, 
and the consequent compression of the lungs. Instead of this, the 
authors of this Memoir have proved that the hyoid apparatus has 
nothing whatever to do with ordinary breathing, but that inspiration is 
performed by the abdominal muscles, which naturally form a deep 
concavity, but contracting become flat, di-aw down the viscera, enlarge 
the cavity of the trunk, which enlargement is followed by a rush of 
air through the trachea into the limgs, when inspiration is completed ; 
while expiration is produced by the action of a peculiar muscle, now 
first completely described, like a broad digastric, which arises from 
the fore and hind part of the shield, and unites by a broad tendon 
across the middle of the abdominal cavity, between which muscle in 
front and the shield behind, are included the viscera — and by contrac- 
tion of which expiration is effected. It is remarkable that this correct 
view has since been found by the authors to be set forth in a dissertation 
on the subject written at Gottingen, in 1795, by Eobert Townson, LL.D., 
and they were surprised, on learning the singularly correct views there 
propoimded, to find that they had ever since been either unappre- 
ciated or condemned. 

Signor Trinchese has been engaged in the investigation of the 

172 Chronicles of Science. [Jan. 

nervous system of the Gasteropodous Mollusca, taking as types the 
Helix pomatia, Arion rufus, and Lymnsea stagnalis. He finds that 
in all the nervous centres of these animals there are, — round or pyri- 
form cells of variable dimensions, enveloped in a thick sheath of con- 
nective tissue ; small cells of irregularly triangular form, round which 
no envelope is perceived ; and free nuclei, like those met with in the 
grey matter of the cerebro-spinal axis in Vertebrates. The cells 
usually present four prolongations, passing to each of the cells siu'- 
rounding them, whilst other processes pass between the latter to other 
cells at a greater or less distance. These cells are usually found in the 
peripherical portions of the ganglia, the interior being occupied with 
fibres and conjunctive tissue. The optic ganglia consist of free 
nuclei and nervous fibres proceeding from the anterior part of the 
cerebroid ganglia, two in number. On the anterior portion of them 
in Helix and Arion, there are four small accessory cerebroid gan- 
glia ; and on the coiu'se of the nerves connecting the cerebroid masses 
with the pedal or abdominal ganglion, there is a small ganglion, 
composed of cells vmited in groups, like the compartments of an 
orange. The peripheral nerves are formed of very delicate tubes, 
having on their walls nuclei similar to those which are observed in 
the higher animals in the Embryonal state. Their mode of termi- 
nation in the muscles is remarkable. The nervous element on arri- 
ving at the muscular fibre, loses its proper wall, and the axis-cylinder 
alone penetrates the muscle, dividing into two very slender filaments. 
These take opposite directions, each traversing one-half of the mus- 
cular fibre, on arriving at the extremity of which they terminate in 
very fine points. 

Although we have long been acquainted with the young state of 
- the true crabs, and hermits, under the form known as Zoea, especially 
distinguished by the want of the ten feet to which the adult animals 
are indebted for their name of Decapoda, it is only recently that Fritz 
Miiller has described the Zoea forms of the Porcellanas as approach- 
ing most closely to those of the crabs. He has now added the in- 
teresting fact that in certain Prawns and Stomapoda (as probably 
Squilla mantis) similar conditions occm*. The metamorphosis of the 
former commences sometimes (as in the Cirripeds) with monoculoid 
forms, and passes through very peculiar Zoeoid and Mysis-like states, 
sometimes with Zoea forms which in structm-e and mode of movement 
resemble those of Hermit Crabs, whilst in others we can hardly say 
that there is any metamorphosis. Dr. Miiller has, however, described 
and figured a little animal which he considers the Zoea of a Stomapod, 
of glassy transparency, in which the segments exist in almost the same 
number as in the mature Stomapods, the sixth and seventh abdominal 
segments only being not yet distinct from each other. As in the Zoese 
of the Crabs and Porcellante, the appendages of the sixth hinder 
thoracic segments, and the lateral laminfe of the caudal fin were also 
as yet entirely deficient. They possess only a median eye. 

So little is known of the habits and modes of Kfe of marine animals, 
that we cannot but feel much interested and deeply indebted for care- 
fully observed facts in this department. Such are those of the curious 

1864.] Zoology and Physiology. 173 

relations existing between the Crab, Pagiirus Pridcauxii, and tlio 
Zoophyte, Aclamsia palliata. Tlicso two incongruous animals are, it 
is well known, constantly found associated together, and although we 
have found them difficidt to keep alive in an aquarium, Lieut.-Col. 
Stuart Wortley has been more successful, and has observed the crab, 
after eating two pieces of meat given to it, seize a third witli its largo 
claw, and thrust it into the expectant moutli of the Adamsia. This 
has been frequently repeated. On leaving its shell, for the purpose 
of establishing itself in a new one, the Pagui'us retui-ned to the old 
shell, and dislodged the Adamsia with its pointed claws, during which 
rough process no acontia were thrown out, as would be done on the 
slightest irritation from any other source ; and when entirely separated, 
the crab holds it firmly with its base against the new shell xmtil it has 
affixed itself. It remained on one occasion for an hour in this position, 
when, finding Adamsia did not affix itself readily, it retm-ned to its old 
shell upon which Adamsia firmly attached itseK as before. So attached 
does the crab appear to be to its helpless companion, and so loath to 
quit its hold upon it, that Col. Wortley concludes, as we were inclined 
to do from facts observed in dredging when they were abimdant, that 
Adamsia palliata is almost, if not quite, a necessity of existence to 
Pagurus Prideauxii. The converse, however, cannot be said, for we 
have kept a specimen of Adamsia alive for twelve months unattached 
to any shell, the Pagiu'us having died on the day succeeding its capture. 
Another remark on the habits of Crustaceans has been furnished by 
Mr. Moore, Curator of the Liverpool Museum, in reference to the King 
Crab (Polyphemus) of which several living specimens have been sent 
over by Professor Agassiz, The long spine-like tail of this species 
has excited much question as to its use. If they are tui-ned over on 
their backs, they bend down the tail until they can reach some point 
d'appui, and then use it to elevate the body and gain their normal 
position. The fimction assigned to it by some, viz. of placing it under 
the body and leaping from place to place, has never been observed. 

Eudolf Leuckart has made some interesting observations upon the 
development of the Acanthocephali, the only group of Entozoa whose 
development had hitherto eluded the investigations of naturalists. 
Scattering the ova of six or eight Ediinorhynclii of the species E. pro- 
teus in a bottle containing Gammari, he found in a few days a great 
nmiiber of these ova in the intestines of the Gammari. The embryos 
quitting their envelopes passed into the abdominal cavity of the Crus- 
taceans. After tkree or four weeks the embryo imderwent a singular 
metamorphosis, which converted its nucleus into a true Echinorhynchus, 
like an Echinorderm in its Pluteus. This rapidly increases in size, 
and finally fills the body of the embryo, which becomes transformed 
into the envelopes external to the muscular tube of the worm, and dis- 
tinguished by a proper vascular system. When the spinous armature 
of the head is formed, it draws back into the posterior part of its body 
like a Cysticercus in its vesicle. Leuckart has counted fifty or sixty 
parasites in a single Gammarus. 

Considerable attention has been devoted to the characters of the 

174 Chronicles of Science. [Jan. 

Amcebina, by two gentlemen who, tliougli they do not agree in all 
their results, will no doubt by a friendly rivalry the better tend to 
elucidate the truth. These are Dr. Wallieh and Mr. H. J. Carter. 
Dr. Wallieh insists upon the absolute necessity of long-continued 
and daily observation whenever it is desired to elucidate the characters 
and vital phenomena which appertain to the lowest forms of organic 
existence ; and entertains the view that probably many, if not all, the 
previously described species of Amoeba are referable to, and constitute 
mere phases of Amoeba villosa, the most highly developed type. Mr. 
Carter, however, regards certain characters of primary importance, 
and typical of A. princeps (Ehr) as reconstituted by him, while Dr. 
Wallieh urges these characters as distinctive of Amceba villosa as 
already described by him. The characters which Mr, Carter claims 
for his A. princeps are its large size and the number of granules it con- 
tains ; its limacious though protean form, its lobed and obtuse 
pseudo-podia proceeding from a posterior end, normally capped with 
a tuft of villous prolongations ; while the nucleolus is so much 
extended over the inner surface of the nuclear cell, that it passes 
beyond the equatorial line of the latter, preventing any halo round the 
nucleus, as in other Amcsbae ; but the border of this nucleus is wavy 
when it has attained the 4:50th of an inch in length. The anomaly in 
the configuration of the nucleus, however, Mr. Carter afterwards 
resigns as a distinctive character. With regard to the apparent 
circulation in these low organisms. Dr. Wallieh believes that it is not 
a vital act, but a secondary and mere mechanical effect consequent on 
the inherent vital contractility of the sarcode. The particles simply 
flow along with the advancing rush of protoplasm, and there is no 
return stream. The numerous and lengthy papers of Dr. Wallieh and 
Mr. Carter, in the ' Annals of Natural History,' on the subject of these 
organisms tend to the combination not only of species, but of genera 
which have always hitherto been regarded as perfectly distinct. 

The difficulty of distinguishing the lowest animal forms from 
vegetable bodies has received a good illustration from some observa- 
tions of Mr. H. J. Carter, well knowTi for his papers upon Rhizopods, 
on Difflugia. He has shown in this species (D. pyriformis) that 
chlorophyll cells exist as part of its organization, and that starch cells, 
imtil recently believed to be a peculiarly vegetable product, form 
part of its products. Moreover, he has observed conjugation similar to 
that of the contents of the cells of Spirogyra, and that apparently 
after this conjugation, when the body of the Difflugia is densely 
charged with chlorophyll cells and starch granules, the nucleus 
becomes charged with spherular, refractive, homogeneous bodies, 
which appear to be developed in the protoplasm that lines (?) the 
nucleus. These spherules pass from the nucleus into the body of the 
animal, and there, becoming granuliferous, so increase by duplicative 
division, as to form the chief bulk of the whole mass, while the chloro- 
phyll cells have entirely disappeared, and the starch granides have become 
more or less diminished in number. Colourless specimens of Difflugia 
having been placed in water, after four days the bottom of the vessel 
became covered with granuliferous cells of the same size and appearance 

1864. ( Zoology and Physiology. 175 

as thoso peculiar to tho colourless specimens, but with the difference 
that they were all provided with a cilium (pcrhai^s two) ; most were 
fixed and retained their globular form ; others swam about by means 
of their cilium ; many of the fixed globidar forms altered their shape 
by becoming polymorphic ; and some lost their cilium and became 
altogether reptant and amoebous. There can be little doubt that these 
Amcubas are the young brood of Difflugia pyriformis. Thus the cycle 
of generative develojiment in this Khizopod by " granulation of the 
nucleus " is so far completed. It is probably the same as in Amoeba 
princeps. The development of the young Amoeba into adult testaceous 
Difflugicc has not yet, however, been observed. 

We shoidd hardly be prepared for psychical development in these 
minute masses of sarcode, nevertheless Mr. Carter's obsei*vations of 
iEthalimn and Actinophrys render it jirobable that certain manifesta- 
tions of instinct are occasionally evinced by them, of the same kind as 
those in the higher animals. On one occasion, for exam2)le, Sir. Carter 
observed an Actinopluys station itself close to a ripe spore-cell of 
Pytliium, Avhich was situated upon a filament of Sjiirogyi-a, and as the 
young ciliated germs issued forth, one after another, from the dehiscent 
spore-cell, the Actinophrys remained by it, and caught every one of 
them even to the last, when it retired to another part of the field, as if 
instinctively conscious that there was nothing more to be got at the 
old place. As, however, these lowest forms of life appear to have but 
one object, and that the attainment of food, we cannot be so much 
surprised if they ai-e provided with sufficient discrimination to be aware 
when they are receiving it, and when the supply has ceased. Indeed 
their whole instinctive development is concentrated upon that important 

( 176 ) [Jan. 



The want of text-books on the Natural History of our colonial and 
foreign possessions, has been long and severely felt by the many 
residents in them who are desirous of employing their hours of 
leisure or recreation, in the pursuit of this most attractive study. As 
regards Botany, the energy of the Director of the Eoyal Botanic 
Gardens at Kew has already accomplished much towards the attain- 
ment of this desirable object. Some years since, Sir William Hooker's 
urgent representations to the Colonial Office succeeded in inducing 
that department to take into consideration a scheme which he pro- 
pounded, for issuing a complete series of Manuals of the Botany of the 
different Colonies, and although the small sums necessary to effect this 
object were, with one exception, grudged to him by the Imperial Ex- 
chequer, the Colonies themselves have in many instances taken up the 
matter, and there is little doubt that Sir William Hooker's scheme 
will eventually be carried out in its integrity. 

Our zoologists have not as yet followed the good example thus set 
before them. Their field of operations is much more extensive, they are 
less united as a body, and they have certainly no single leader amongst 
them, who occupies a corresponding situation to that filled by Sir 
William Hooker with regard to the sister science. So far as concerns 
the zoology of our foreign and colonial possessions, therefore, we 
must for the present look to what the unassisted energies of private 
individuals can accomplish. And we must be thankful when even 
such indirect sanction and assistance as the Government of India has 
bestowed on Dr. Jerdon's present imdertaking can be obtained. 

Dr. T. C. Jerdon's name is well known in connection with many 
contributions to the Natural History of India, which he has made 
during a long service, in different parts of that country, as a medical 
officer of the Indian army. In 1839, Dr. Jerdon commenced the 
publication in the ' Madras Journal of Literature and Science ' of a 
catalogue of the birds of Southern India. This with its supplements 
was completed in 1844, and still remains oiu- best authority on the 
ornithology of the districts of which it treats. In 1844, Dr. Jerdon 

* ' The Birds of India : being a Natural History of all the Birds known to 
inhabit Continental India ; with Descriptions of the Species, Genera. Families, 
Tribes and Orders, and a Brief Notice of such Families as are not found in India ; 
making it a Manual of Ornithology specially adapted for India.' By T. C. Jerdon, 
Surgeon-Major, &c. Calcutta, 1862. Vols. I. and II. pt. 1. 

18G4.] Jerdon's Birds of India. 177 

also publislicd a scries of illnstnitions of Indian birds,* in a quarto 
volume of fifty plates, in which many rare sjiecies were figured for the 
first time. Besides this, he has contributed many papers relating to 
Indian zoology to diliereut scientific journals, and has been a most 
indefatigable explorer and collector in nearly every province of India. 
It cannot be doubted, thei'cforc, that Dr. Jerdon's qualifications to 
carry out the plan he now proposes, — that is, to issue a series of Manuals 
of the Natural History of the Vertebratcd Animals of India, — are very 
considerable. And looking to the way in which he has commenced to 
execute his plan, iu the case of the two volumes now before us, which 
form the first part of his ' Manual of Indian Ornithology,' we have 
every reason to be satisfied that it has fallen to his lot to undertake 
it. Nor can it be doubted that such a series of manuals is a great de- 
sideratum. At present, as Dr. Jerdon observes, to " obtain acquaint- 
ance with what is ali'eady known respecting the Fauna of India," it is 
necessary to " search through the voluminous transactions of learned 
societies and scientific joiirnals," which are of coui'se quite inacces- 
sible to residents in an Indian iip-country station, and hardly to be 
referred to even in Madi'as or Calcutta. Dr. Jerdon's aim, therefore, 
is to supply in a few portable volumes the information requisite for a 
student of any branch of the natural history of the vertebrata of 
India to ascertain what is already known of his favourite science 
and to what points esjiecially he should direct his inquiries. The 
two volumes already published by Dr. Jerdon take us thi'ough the 
greater part of the class of birds; a third volimie, shortly to be issued, 
will comjjlete this part of the subject. The author will then tui-n his 
attention to the Mammals, Eeptiles, and Fishes, and treat of each of 
these classes of animals in a similar manner. 

Dr. Jerdon introduces himself to his readers in the fii'st volume of 
his present work with a well-written chapter of general remarks, which 
will repay perusal. After giving an outline of the structure of birds, 
external and internal, and some remarks on their migration, he pro- 
ceeds, before entering upon the subject of classification, to devote a 
few words to the much-vexed question of the difi'erences between 
species and variety. A species. Dr. Jerdon defines as consisting of a 
" nmnber of individuals closely resembling one another in size, struc- 
ture, and colour, and propagating a like race ; " a variety, as " consist- 
ing of one or more individuals resembling certain other individuals 
sufficiently to be considered identical in species, and yet differing in 
certain external points of coloiu-, size, or form." As regards the mode 
in which this difficult subject, as encoimtered in the case of the birds 
of India, has been dealt vsath, the following remarks of our author may 
prove of interest : — 

" Some naturalists believe that permanent varieties are common in the 
animal kingdom, and Kaup calls them nuh-npecies. Such persons consider 
that their differences from other individuals, of what they would term the 
typical form, do not entitle them to tlie full rank of a species. Others, 
again, deny that permanent varieties exist, and state their conviction that 

* • Illnstrations of Indian Ornithology.' By T. 0. Jerdon. Madras, 1844. 
1 vol. 4to. 

VOL. I. N 

178 Reviews. [Jan. 

even slight differences of colour and size, if found to be constant, are suf- 
ficient to constitute such individuals a distinct race or species. When such 
differences are found to co-exist with a different geographical distribution, 
I certainly prefer the views of those who look on all permanent distinctions 
of colour, size, structure, &c., as distinct species; and 1 believe that no change 
of climate, or food, or other external circumstances, will produce any altera- 
tion in them or in their descendants, if they remain true to each other ; 
and as yet I know of no recorded instance where any well-marked race has 
produced offspring differing from their own, or tending to revert to a 
supposed original type. That various nearly-affined species will propagate 
ititer se, and produce fertile offspring, I fully believe ; as in the cases of 
the green Pigeons of Bengal and of Southern India, in the Indian and the 
Burmese Rollers, the small Cuckoos of South India and those of Bengal, 
and in several other instances : but that this fact militates against their 
being species and in favour of their being varieties, I think is not sup- 
ported by many recent experiments in crossing. Of late years many 
species have been universally admitted as such, which were formerly con- 
sidered simple varieties, and although, perhaps, the tendency of late 
writer's has been to multiply species, in some cases most unnecessarily, 
yet in previous years the other extreme was taken, more especially by 
Hchlegel and his followers. Our best naturalists and ornithologists now 
fully recognize the distinctness of permanent races. If varieties are once 
allowed, it depends on individual judgment or caprice to what extent they 
may be carried. In this country, where there are many very closely allied 
species, among genera characteristic of the country, many of the species 
of Malacocercus and Ilcematornis would be classed as simple varieties by 
some, whilst others would perhaps allow some of them, whose different 
notes they might have observed, to be distinct species, and the " rest 
varieties. Lastly : it is, I think, more convenient in practice to give each 
race a distinct specific name, than to speak of them as ' Var. A^ or 
' Var. i?.' of such a species." 

With regard to the origin of these allied or " representative " 
species, as they are usually termed, Dr. Jerdon states that, as far as 
his " brief experience goes, geographic distribution is against Mr, 
Darwin's theory, " To give one instance," he continues, " Malaco- 
cercus striatus of Ceylon is more allied to M. Bengalensis of Bengal, 
than to 31. Malabariciis, which is spread throughout a vast region 
between those provinces," On this point we may remark that the 
great mass of evidence in such cases is, as is now generally allowed, 
decidedly on the other side of the question. It is beyond a doubt, 
that allied species, are as a rule, distributed geogTaphically in the 
order of their affinities, that is, that the most nearly allied occupy con- 
terminous areas. Moreover, Dr, Jerdon ought to be aware that 
Ceylon, though now-a-days much more nearly connected with the 
peninsula of India, than with the upper provinces, furnishes many 
remarkable forms which tend to show that this island has been peopled 
with life from the other side of the Bay of Bengal, along which the 
Bengalese species descend, often far to the south. Dr. Jerdon, how- 
ever, seems to take a very candid view of Mr, Darwin's theory on 
other points, though he is of opinion that that distinguished naturalist, 
" perhaps, lays too much stress on external and fortuitoiis circum- 
stances as producing varieties, and not enough on the inherent power 
of change," 

1864.] Jeudon's Birch of India. 179 

Dr. Jcrdon next proceeds to the difficidt subject of tlio classifica- 
tion of birds, and adoj^ts as his system, nearly that of Mr. (Jeorge 
Gray, as given in his ' List of Genera.' Finally, ho concludes his in- 
troduction with a sketch of the physical features of Northera, Central, 
and Southern India, in relation to their respective Faunas, and gives 
some account of what has ali-cady been effected by different natu- 
ralists who have devoted their attention to various points of the area 
embraced in these three divisions. The names of Franklin, Tickell, 
Sykes, and Hodgson arc all well known in connection with the earliest 
researches made in Indian Ornithology. The latter gentleman espe- 
cially, who was for many years resident at the Coiu't of Nepaul, 
laboiu-ed long and zealously in this, as in other branches of Natui'al 
History, and has effected far more than any other naturalist towards 
making known to us the many singular forms of life that people the 
slopes of the Himalayas. Other more recent v/orkers in the same 
field have been Bm-gess, Adams, Tytler, and McClelland, and last, but 
not least, Mr. Edward Blyth — for many years the energetic and 
devoted curator of the Asiatic Society's Museum at Calcutta, whose 
nimicrous publications and extensive researches have, as rightly 
observed by Dr. Jerdon, done more to extend the study of Natiu'al 
History in India than those of all the previously mentioned observers 
put together. 

We now come to the main portion of Dr. Jerdon's work, which 
consists of short treatises on each of the species of birds belonging 
to the Indian Avi-fauna, interspersed Avith current allusions to the 
various groups found in other countries, but not represented in tho 
Indian series. Dr. Jerdon's two published volumes treat of the 
Birds of Prey and the numerous divisions of Insessores or Perchers, 
Of the first, he gives 81 species as belonging to the Fauna of India, 
of the Insessores, no less than 689 species are enumerated. Such 
being the case, it could not be expected that any very detailed account 
could be given of each bird, especially as what is contemplated is a 
" brief, but comprehensive Manual." And on the whole, as regards 
the first volume especially, we cannot but think that we have every 
reason to be satisfied with the way in which om- author has performed 
his work. The descriptions given are sufficient for the determination 
of the species in ordinary cases. In many allied forms, it will, of 
course, be necessary for the student to refer back to the previously 
published accoimts indicated among the synonyms of each species, 
and in the more difficult cases, to go to the typical si^ecimens in the 
Museum of Calcutta, or of the British metropoKs. The details as 
regards the geographical distribution, habits, and general alliances of 
each species are likewise carefully worked out, and the whole account 
is wi'itten in plain and comprehensible terms, well suited for the pur- 
pose intended. As an illustration of Dr. Jerdon's style, we extract 
his remarks on the Turumti Falcon (Hypotriorchis chicquera) — one of 
the best known, and commonest small Falcons of India, allied to 
om" Hobby. 

" The Turumti is universally spread throughout India from north to 
south, but is rare in the forest districts, as it affects chieflv open country 

N 2 

180 Beviews. [Jan. 

in the vicinity of cultivation. It frequents gardens, groves of trees, and 
even large single trees in the open country, whence it sallies forth, some- 
times circling aloft, but more generally, especially in the heat of the day, 
gliding with inconceivable rapidity along some hedgerow, brink of a tank, 
or across some fields, and pouncing suddenly on some lark, sparrow, or 
wagtail. It very often hunts in pairs, and I have now and then seen it 
hover like a kestrel for a few seconds. It preys chiefly on small birds, 
especially the social larks {Coryphidea calandrella), sparrows, and the small 
ringed-plovei-s (^Charadrius) ; also not unfrequently on bats, which 1 have 
seen it seize on the wing just at dusk. It breeds on high trees, and has 
usually four eggs of a yellowish-brown colour, mottled with brown spots. 
The young fly early, by the end of March or beginning of April. It has a 
shrill angry scream, and is very courageous, driving away crows, kites, and 
even the wokhab (^Aquila fusca), from the vicinity of its nest or perch. 
It is occasionally reclaimed, and flown at quail, partridges, mynas, but 
especially at the Indian Jay or Roller (Coracius indicd). In pursuit of this 
quarry the Falcon follows most closely and perseveringly, but is often 
balked by the extraordinary evolutions of the Roller, who now darts off 
obliquely, then tumbles down perpendicularly, screaming all the time, and 
endeavouring to gain the shelter of the nearest tree or grove. But even 
here he is not safe ; the Falcon follows him from branch to branch, drives 
him out again, and sooner or later the exhausted quarry falls a victim to 
the ruthless bird of prey. I have known falconers train the Turumti 
to hunt in couples. 

" The Indian name, Turumti, appears to owe its origin to Turumtai, 
given by PaUas as the Calmuc name of the Hobby. 

" A very nearly-allied species of Martin exists in Africa, F. ruficollis, 
Sw. (chicqueroides, A. Smith), long considered as the same, but now 
recognized as distinct by Hartlaub and others. Kaup, P.Z.S. 1851, calls 
it a sub-species of the other, diff"ering in its darker colours, more striped 
head, and with the cheek-stripe darker and more distinct." 

The second volume of Dr. Jerdon's work is, perhaps, not quite so 
satisfactory as the first. The descriptions given are mostly shorter 
and more concise, and we do not find so many of those agreeable episodes 
upon the habits of the species which tend to render a book of this 
sort acceptable to the ordinary reader. Yet we must recollect the ex- 
tent of the subject, — the immense number and variety of the little 
Passerine birds, of which this part of Dr. Jerdon's book treats, — and 
how difiicult it is to say much when the subject is so new, and when 
so little, considering the wide field of observation, has been done by 
former workers. As it is. Dr. Jerdon has already transgressed the 
bounds originally marked out for himself, — his prospectus having an- 
nounced the completion of the birds in two volumes. It is perhaps, 
therefore, hardly fair to find fault with our author on these grounds, 
though, we think, the Indian field-naturalists, for whose benefit mainly 
the work was undertaken, will agree with our remarks upon these 

We have now, in conclusion, one or two criticisms to make upon 
points which will interest om* scientific readers. Dr. Jerdon adopts, 
as we have already stated, Mr. George Gray's arrangement of the class 
of birds, and, so far as the six great ordinal divisions (given p. xxxix.) 
go, we are not aware that he could have much improved upon them. 
But when he proceeds (p. 151) to employ Mr. Gray's subdivisions of 

18G4:.] Bates's Naturalist on the Amazons. 181 

the great group of Insessores, Dr. Jerdon is certainly behind the age. 
It has Iqng since been most satisfactorily demonstrated that the Te- 
nuirostres of Cuvicr form a most ill-assorted group, which ought to be 
divided amongst the others in any natural arrangement, and that, ex- 
clusive of the Parrots, there are but three natural sub-groups of In- 
sessorial birds, — namely, tlie Fissirostres, Scansorcs, and typical Pas- 
seres. We might also object to Dr. Jerdon's collocation of the Swifts 
and Swallows, to the situation he has assigned to Upupa, and to many 
other minor points. But on the other hand we must congratulate him 
on his giving the Megalcemidoi their true rank as a distinct family, on 
his correct ai:)preciation of the relation of the Hornbills, and on 
much that relates to his general arrangement of the smaller groups. 
On the other hand, Dr. Jerdon goes too fast in another direction, 
especially when it is recollected that his book is intended for learners 
and imscientific persons as well as for the initiated. The subdivision 
of the Genera is carried to by far too great an extent, and this, in our 
estimation, forms one of the principal defects of the book as a scien- 
tific work. The best authorities of the day, in all departments of 
natui-al history, set their face against this indiscriminate midtiplication 
of generic terms, which, as carried out by certain writers, bids fair to 
convert every species into a genus, and renders the burden of recol- 
lecting technical names almost insupportable. Generic differences 
ought to be founded on essential and easily recognizable points of 
structure. That this is not the plan followed in Dr. Jerdon's book, 
every naturalist will very soon discover, and we fear the non-naturalists 
(if we may so express oiu'selves) will be sorely puzzled in theii' at- 
tempts to fathom many of Dr. Jerdon's minute subdivisions of well- 
known groups. Who will recognize the Linntean Turdi under the 
names Turdidiis, Planesticiis, and Geocichia ? Who will appreciate the 
separation of the well-defined genus of Pipits (Anthus) into Pipastes 
Corydalla and Agrodroma f In thus following the phantasies of Kaup, 
and the mad vagaries of Bonaparte (in his latest writings), we can- 
not believe that Dr. Jerdon has acted well for his own reputation, 
nor wisely as regards the class of readers for whom his volumes are 
specially intended. 


To no class of men are the thoughtful students of Natui-al History 
more deeply indebted than to those who, casting behind them all the 
,luxm'ies and pleasures of civilized life, plimge into the forests and 
solitudes of fai" distant regions, there to hold communion v.'iih Natiu'e 
face to face, and to obtain an insight into her workings and modes of 
action in situations which, under ordinary circumstances, would for 

* ' The Naturalist on the Eiver Amazons.' By Henry Walter Bates. 2 vols., 
8vo. London : John Murray, 1863. 

' Contributions to an Insect Fauna of the Amazon Valley ; LEProoPTEBA, Heli- 
coaidx.' By Hemy Walter Bates. ('Linnaan Transactions,' vol. xxiii. part 3, 
page 495.) 

182 Reviews. [Jan. 

ever be concealed from intelligent curiosity. The fi-amers of theories, 
and the elaborators of grand generalizations, must necessarily own 
their dependence upon such self-sacrificing investigators, and the value 
of the facts accumulated by such men depends upon their own inhe- 
rent powers of observation, and the degree of intelligence and industry 
they bring to bear upon their self-imposed labours. And seldom 
indeed does it happen that these qualities are so admirably combined 
as they appear to be in one whose ardent thii'st for natural knowledge 
impelled him to exile himself for eleven years in a tropical and 
unhealthy country, in order that he might revel in the rich prodigality 
of animal and vegetable life which characterizes the great valley of 
the Amazons — a region which, though far indeed from the comforts 
and necessities of civilization, may fitly be designated " the Metropolis 
of Nature." 

Mr. Bates embarked at Liverpool in the spring of 1848, in company 
with Mr. A. R. Wallace, for Para, the only port of entry to the vast 
region watered by the Amazons. The object which the travellers pro- 
posed to themselves was twofold — to make for themselves collections 
of specimens, consigning the duplicates to London, to be there dis- 
posed of in payment of expenses, and, to gather facts towards solving 
the problem of the " origin of species." The first of these objects 
was attained in an eminent degree ; for not only have Mr. Bates's 
collections many a time and oft caused congregations of natm-alists 
under the hammer of Mr. Stevens, but he astounds us with the state- 
ment of his aggregate results when he informs us, with truthful sim- 
plicity, that he obtained, during his eleven years' sojourn, 14,000 
insects, and 712 other animals, of which startling total no less than 
8,000 were neio to science. Never has it fallen to the lot of a single 
individual to bring so vast a contribution to systematic zoology, and 
it is a grand proof of the rare riches of the teeming district he so 
wisely selected for his exploration. 

With regard to the second object of the journey, while the results 
have not been so definite as those just glanced at, the two explorers 
arrived at some conclusions to which we shall refer in the com'se of 
the present article, and which, however widely they may diifer from 
the views of another school, will, we ventm'e to predict, be of consi- 
derable service in the ultimate advance of science. It is now a 
matter known to every one, that Mr. Wallace, after spending four years 
in South America with Mr. Bates, travelled to the East in search of 
new fields of exploration, and there, while lying stricken down by 
fever, he elaborated in his busy brain the theory afterwards pro- 
mulgated by Mr. Darwin in his work on ' The Origin of Species.' It^ 
was this fact, and the commtmication of this hyjiothesis to Sir C. 
Lyell, which determined Mr. Darwin to bring his long-cherished views 
before the Linnoean Society, and thereafter to publish the book which 
has been so fertile a source of scientific controversy. We may judge, 
therefore, that as far as Mr. Wallace is concerned, he considered that 
the facts he had collected threw some light upon the problem which 
they had charged themselves to illuminate. And in the work before 
us Mr. Bates proves himself an apt scholar and valuable ally of Mr. 

18G4.] Bates's Naturalist on the Amazons. 183 

Darwin ; and in his preface he tells us that it was Mr. Darwin's 
opinions and wishes which were mainly instrumental in inducing him 
to commence the inditing of his book, and the same steady encourage- 
ment which strengthened his wavering resolution, and. helped him to 
accomplish the task. We shall not be sm'priscd, then, to find tho 
tendency of the book to be Darwinian. 

Mr. Bates made Pani his head-quarters, and his first volume is 
devoted to that ueighbom-hood, and his excm-sions up the Lower Amazons. 
Tho zoological richness of the immediate vicinity of Pani itself is 
something almost beyond belief ; and our traveller's accoimt of his first 
walk on the afternoon of his arrival is most graphic and stirring. 
Nevertheless he appears to have been at first struck with the generally 
small size and obscure colouring of the birds, and the similarity of 
appearance which the insects and birds of the open, sunny places bore 
to those inhabiting similar spots in Eiu-ope. The roadside vegetation 
consisted of tangled masses of bushes and shrubs, intermingled with 
prickly mimosas ; but, notwithstanding this resemblance to Em-opean 
roadside features, there were, as may be supposed, many others which, 
at every stej), reminded the travellers that they were in another world. 
The abundance of climbing trees attracted the attention in their first 
forest walk, and elicited a remark which is extremely interesting, viz. 
that these climbing trees do not form any particular family or genus ; 
there is no order of plants whose especial habit it is to climb ; but species 
of many, and the most diverse families, the bulk of whose members are 
not climbers, seem to have been driven by circumstances to adopt this 
habit. The orders Leguminosfe, Guttiferte, BignoniacejB, Moraceaa, 
and others, fm-nish the greater number. There is even a climbing 
species of palm (Desmoncus). This remark is very characteristic of 
the tendency of Mr. Bates's mind, which, though not to an undue 
degree speculative, yet sees, in observations like these, something more 
than the meagre fact which would be patent to all. He concludes the 
subject with the remark : " The number and variety of climbing trees 
in the Amazons forests are interesting, taken in connexion with the 
fact of the very general tendency of the animals also to become 
climbers." (p. 49.) 

The quadrupeds and birds of the forest do not appear to the 
passing traveller, for, being excessively shy and widely scattered, the 
first impression which Mr. Bates received was that they were very 
few ; he met with no tmnultuous movement or soimd of life, but 
describes it as a solitude, in which only at long intervals animals are 
seen in abundance, when some particular spot is found which is more 
attractive than others ; and this fact of distribution is one which we 
have om-selves observed, when, for example, scanning an expanse of 
sea-shore in search of the smaller marine animals, in situations where 
certain species are known to abound. The feeling inspired in the 
Brazilian forests was one of inhospitable wildness, only increased 
tenfold by the fearfid and harromng uproar made by the howling 
monkeys morning and evening. Other sounds are not so easily 
accounted for, even by the natives themselves, such as a sudden noise 
like the clang of an iron bar against a hard, hollow tree, or a piercing 

184 IBevieiDs. [Jan. 

cry whicli rends tlie air — sounds not repeated, while the succeeding 
silence tends to heighten the impression which they make on the mind. 
" With the natives it is always the Curipira — the wild man or 
spirit of the forest — which produces all noises they are unable to 
explain." (p. 73.) 

Near Cameta, on the river Tocantins, Mr. Bates had an oppor- 
tunity of verifying a fact which had almost fallen into discredit, viz, 
the bird-catching propensities of the great Mygale spider (M. avicu- 
laria). Its web was stretched across a crevice in the tree-trunk, and 
in it were entangled two birds about the size of our English siskins ; 
one of them was dead, and the other under the spider, not quite dead. 
The observation appeared to be new to the residents, though the insect 
was well known ; and the crab-spiders, as they call them, are injui'ious 
even to man, from the maddening irritation produced by their hairs, 
which come oif when touched. Nevertheless, Mr. Bates " saw the 
children belonging to an Indian family, who collected for me, with 
one of these monsters secured by a cord round its waist, by which 
they were leading it about the house as they would a dog." (p. 162.) 

The impediments which Mr. Bates encountered in his journeys up 
and down the ' Great Father of Waters ' almost exceed belief, owing 
partly- to the dangers of the river navigation, and partly to the scarcity 
of trading-canoes large enough for his accommodation. Although but 
a river, a strong breeze would produce such a sea, that the vessel (a 
schooner) pitched and rolled like a ship in the ocean ; and in the 
Tocantins, the view from the middle of the stream is described as very 
imposing : — " Towards the north- east, there was a long sweep of horizon, 
clear of land ; and on the south-west, stretched a similar boundless 
expanse, but varied with islets clothed with fan-leaved palms, visible, 
however, only as isolated groups of columns, tufted at the top, rising 
here and there amidst the waste of waters." (I. 220.) 

We cannot sufficiently admire the perseverance and earnestness with 
which Mr. Bates overcame difficulties that would have deterred any 
ordinary traveller, and encountered dangers of no insignificant nature. 
These difficulties and dangers are best illustrated by his accoimt of a 
voyage up the Tapajos, from Santarem to the Mundurucu village. It 
was necessary first to procure a vessel of his own, a two-masted cuberta, 
of about six tons' bui-then, strongly built of Itauba wood. This was 
hired at the cheap rate of Is. 2c/. per diem. Then men were necessary, 
and although only sis were wanted, it was ahnost impossible to procm-e 
them ; and at length, after almost fearing that the voyage must be 
given up, he procured one man, and with his servant Jose he deter- 
mined to attempt the journey. Before they had got many miles a 
storm arose which blew away their boat, tore their sails to rags, 
snapped their ropes, and drove their vessel broadside on the beach. 
Nine days were necessary to repair the rigging ; but not lost days, for 
there were rich forests to explore. Having been fortunate enough to 
meet with another hand, they again proceeded, and for some days all 
went on well, but the loss of the boat was a great source of annoyance, 
and ultimately was remedied by building a canoe out of a tree felled 
for the purpose, and moved with great labour to the river-side upon a 

1864.] Bates's Naturaliat on the Amazons. 185 

road mailc for the occasion. The casca turned out a kucccrr. Add to 
all tills tlic plagues of fire-ants — Tabaiii, which, by twos and threes at 
a time, dug their probosces, half-au-iueh hjug and sharp as a needle, 
through the long thick cotton shirt upon their backs, making them cry 
out under the infliction, and a host of other inconveniences ; and it 
will be seen that natiu'al-history collecting upon the Amazons is no 
child's play. 

Some cm'ious adventures with serpents rewarded this excursion. 
On one occasion an Anaconda (Eimectes murinus), 18 feet 9 inches 
long, was systematically hunted and despatched with harpoons ; and 
he appears to credit reports of similar serpents having been found 
42 feet long. Moreover, the natives are not without faith in the ex- 
istence of a great Amazonian serpent, rivalling the great sea-serpent 
itself in magnitude. On another occasion, " whilst pinning an insect, 
I was rather startled by a rushing noise in the vicinity. I looked up 
to the sky, thinking a squall was coming on, but not a breath of wind 
stirred in the tree tops. On stepping out of the bushes, I met face to 
face a huge serpent (Boa Constrictor) coming down a slope, and 
making the dry twigs crack and fly with his weight as he moved over 
them. I had very frequently met with a smaller boa, the Cutim boa, 
and knew from the habits of the family that there was no danger ; so 
I stood my ground. On seeing me, the reptile suddenly tiu-ned, and 
glided at an accelerated pace down the path. Wishing to take a note 
of his probable size, and the colours and markings of his skin, I set 
oif after him, but he increased his speed, and I was unable to get near 
enough for the purpose. There was very little of the serpentine move- 
ment in his course. The rapidly moving and shining body looked 
like a stream of brown liquid flowing over the thick bed of falling 
leaves, rather than a serpent with a skin of varied colours. The huge 
trunk of an uprooted tree here lay across the road ; this he glided 
over on his undeviating com-se, and soon after penetrated a dense 
swampy thicket, where, of course, I did not choose to follow him." 

Having stayed about three years and a half at Santarem, and in its 
neighbourhood, Mr. Bates proceeded to Ega, on the Upper Amazon, 
or Solimoens, and this distant spot, 1,200 miles from Para, he made 
his head-quarters for no less than four-and-a-half years, making during 
that period, however, excui'sions of 300 and 400 miles' distance from 
it. An arduous joiu'ney of 35 days fi-om Santarem brought our tra- 
veller to Ega, where, far from civilized life, he was often put to great 
shifts, from the failvu'e of communication and remittances from Eiu'ope. 
From the inhabitants he met with civility and Idndness, and although 
never troubled with impertinent ciu'iosity on their part, his pursuits 
could not fail to arouse some speculation. The Indians and half- 
castes complacently thought it but natiu-al that strangers should collect 
and send abroad the beautiful birds and insects of their comitry, imi- 
versally concluding that the butterflies were wanted as patterns for 
bright-coloiu-ed calico prints. We can sympathize with the noble 
endiu-ance of Mr. Bates, in spite of the difficidty of getting news, the 
^vant of intellectual society, and, towards the latter part of his resi- 

186 Beviews. [Jan. 

deuce, ill-health arising from bad and insufficient food ; and feel 
rejoiced that he was well rej)aid by the fact that the neighboui'hood 
yielded him, up to the last day of his residence, an uninterrupted suc- 
cession of new and cm-ious forms in the different classes of the animal 
kingdom, but especially insects. 

It is difficult, fi'om such, a mine of infoimation as is displayed in 
the contents of these two volumes of travel, to select for illustration 
one subject of considerably greater interest than another. Mr. Bates 
discourses of monkeys, of serpents, of birds, of insects, of vegetation, 
of natives, and all with the air of one who speaks of what he has seen. 
But it is to insects more especially that his attention was directed, 
and if we were to single out one subject in particular which he has 
thoroughly studied, it would be that of the history of the various spe- 
cies of Ants, the Saiiba Ant, the Formiga de Fogo or Fire Ants, the Ter- 
mites, the Foraging Ants, &g., for the graj)hic and interesting accoimts 
of which, however, we must refer the reader to his volumes. But while 
it is to insects that he has devoted a large portion of his attention, it 
is in reference to them also chiefly, that he has advanced those views 
which we have already alluded to, as bearing upon the question of the 
origin of species ; and in the remaining portion of this article we 
shall briefly notice those views. 

Among insects, the causes and influence of colour is a very im- 
portant subject, which receives its share of attention, but although 
the brilliant ornamentation of the males exists in the fauna of all 
climates, it certainly reaches a higher degree of perfection in the 
tropics than elsewhere ; nevertheless Mr. Bates concludes that it 
is not wholly the external conditions of light, heat, moisture, and 
so forth, which determine the general aspect of the animals of a 
country, and he combats the generally entertained notion that the 
superior size and beauty of tropical insects and birds are inune- 
diately due to the physical conditions of a tropical climate, or are 
in some way directly connected with them. It is almost always the 
males only which are beautiful in colom^s ; the brilliant dress is rarely 
worn by both sexes of the same species. If climate had any direct 
influence in this matter, why, he asks, have not both sexes felt its 
effects, and why are the males of genera, living imder oui- gloomy 
English skies, adorned with bright colours ? It is true the tropics 
have a vastly greater total number of species altogether ; the abund- 
ance of food, high temperature, absence of seasons of extreme cold 
and dearth, and the variety of stations, all probably operate in favour- 
ing the existence of a greater number and variety of species in tropical 
than in temj)erate latitudes ; but the contrast between the colouring 
of the sexes is often greater in the tropics than in any species of tem- 
perate zones, so that, in fact, beauty of coloiu' is not peculiar to any 
one zone, but producible imder any climate where a number of species 
or given genus lead a flom'ishing existence. These facts " all point to 
the mutual relations of the species, and especially to those between 
the sexes, as having far more to do in the matter than climate." Else- 
where he makes a remark in which we most heartily concur : " I think 

1864.] Bates's Naturalist on the Amazons. 187 

it is a childish notion, that the beauty of birds, insects, and other 
creatui'cs is given to please the human eye. Surely rich plumage and 
song, like all other endowments of species, are given them for their 
own pleasure and advantage. This, if true, ought to enlarge our 
ideas of the inner life and mutual relations of our humbler fellow- 
creatures ! " 

Again, the similarity of the colour of the insect to the ground it 
inhabits is an interesting problem touched upon at vol. i, p. 207. 
This assimilation is exhibited by some and not by others, the dress of 
some species being in striking contrast to the colours of their dwell- 
ing-place. But, as Mr. Bates remarks — The species not so protected 
" has means of protection of quite a different nature, and therefore does 
not need the peculiar mode of disguise enjoyed by its companion ; " 
and he projierly infers, " that the fact of some species not exhibiting 
the same adaptation of colom-s to dwelling-places as their companion 
species, does not throw doubt on the explanation given of the adapta- 
tion, but is rather confirmatory of it." 

Mr. Bates supports by observation Darwin's views of the compe- 
tition existing amongst organized beings, and illustrates it in the 
vegetable world by the growth of the Amazons forest, especially by 
the Murderer Liana, a species of fig, which piits fortli arm-like 
branches from side to side, which meet together, and clasping one 
another mount upwards, tightly encircling the tree w^hich supports it 
with inflexible rings, till at length the tree is killed, and " the strange 
sj)ectacle remains of the selfish parasite, clasping in its arms the life- 
less and decaying body of its victim, which had been a help to its own 
growth. Its ends have been served ; it has flowered and fruited, 
reproduced and disseminated its kind ; and now when the dead trimk 
moulders away, its own end approaches, its support is gone, and 
itself also falls." Thus the Liana merely exhibits, in a more con- 
sj)icuous manner than usual, the struggle which necessarily exists 
amongst vegetable forms in these crowded forests, when individual 
is competing with individual, and species with sjjecies, all striving to 
reach light and air, in order to unfold their leaves and perfect their 
organs of fructification. But " there is jjlenty in tropical nature to 
counteract any unpleasant imj^ression which the reckless energy of 
the vegetation might produce. There is the incomparable beauty and 
variety of the foliage, the vivid colom-s, the richness and exuberance 
everywhere disj)layed, which make, in my opinion, the richest wood- 
land scenery in Northern Em'Oi^e a sterile desert in comparison. But 
it is especially the enjoyment of life manifested by individual exist- 
ences, which compensates for the destruction and pain caused by in- 
evitable competition." (vol. i. p. 50.) 

But Mr. Bates's strongest article of alliance ^-ith Mr. Darn-in is 
upon the subject of mimetic resemblances. This curious topic, touched 
upon in several places in his work, has received fiu'ther elucidation in 
the admii-able and elaborate memoir referred to at the head of this 
article. This memoir was read to the Linnrean Society, Nov. 21st, 
1861, and long preceded, therefore, his two volumes of travel, to which we 

188 Beviews. [Jan. 

tave liitlierto been referring. By this memoir, entitled ' Contributions 
to an Insect Fauna, of the Amazon Valley,' Mr. Bates has established for 
himself a high rank among original investigators, and has shown powers 
of observation of which he may justly feel proud. For although the 
subject of recurrent form, or analogical resemblance, or homomor- 
phism, or by whatever title it may be called, has attracted the atten- 
tion of many naturalists, the manner in which it is here illustrated in 
the Heliconine group of butterflies, is equally original and acute. 

Mr. Bates found that certain butterflies, so closely mocked cer- 
tain others belonging to distinct groups, that though always on the 
watch, it required all his caution to distinguish them.* He believes 
that these resemblances are intended as a protection to otherwise 
defenceless insects, by deceiving insectivorous animals, and pre- 
sumes that, seeing the excessive abundance of one species and the 
fewness of the individuals of the other, that the Heliconide is 
free from the persecution to which the Leptalis is subjected ; and he 
seems inclined to attribute less to community of habit than we should 
be disposed to do, though it cannot be denied that such community is 
a constant concomitant of mimetism. 

The bearing of this subject, upon the origin of species, is plainly 

* The Heliconidje appeared to him to be the objects mocked, because they all 
have tlie same family facies, whilst the analogous species are dissimilar to tlieir 
nearest allies, — permitted, as it were, to produce the resemblance from the normal 
facies of the genus or fnmily to which they severally belong. So close were 
the resemblances that Mr. Bates was never able to distinguish the Leptalides 
(Pieridse) from tire species they imitated, without close examination after capture. 
And yet the Leptalides belong to a family totally different in structure and meta- 
morphosis from the Heliconidai, which they imitate. Moreover, they fly in the 
same part of the forest, and generally in company with the species they mimic. 
Species of Ithomia (Heliconidie) concerned in these imitations have all the character 
of true species, being distinct and constant. They are all excessively numerous 
in individuals, swarms of each kind being found in tlie districts they inhabit. The 
Leptalides are extremely rare ; they cannot be more tlian as one in a thousand of 
the Ithomise. Moreover, none of these Leptalides have been found in any other 
district or country tlian those inhabited by the IthomiiB, wliich they counterfeit. 
A species very closely allied to L. Lysinoe has been received from Mexico ; but an 
Ithomia of nearly the same colours (I. Nero) also inhabits Mexico. Some other 
Leptalides exist which do not mimic Ithomise, but some other genera of the same 
family, as Methona and Mechanitis. " A'similar series of mimetic analogies occurs 
in the Old World, between the Asiatic and African Danaidx (or representatives 
of the Heliconidse) and species of other families of butterflies and moths ; but no 
instance is known in these families of a tropical species of one hemisphere counter- 
feiting a form belonging to the other." So, also, on the banks of the Amazons 
parasitic, bees and two-winged flies mimic the dress of industrious and nest- 
building bees peculiar to this country, at whose expense they live, in the manner 
of the cuckoo. 

An examination of the beautiful coloured plates in the Liunsean Society's 
memoir sliows that the mimetic resemblances exhibit a minute and palpably 
intentional likeness, which, as IMr. Bates expresses it, is perfectly staggering ; 
and no wonder, indeed, that he was constantly being deceived by them. Com- 
paring Leptalis TJieonoii with Ithomia Flora, or the Ega variety with Ithomia 
Illiiiissa, Leptalis Amphione with Mechanitis Polymnia (both var. Egaensis^, and, 
again, Leptalis Orise with Methona Psidii, we cannot fail to be astonished at the 
closeness of the resemblance, particularly when taken in connection with the 
normal foim of Leptalis Nehemia. 

18C4.] Bates's Naturalist on the Amazons. 189 

statctl by Mr. Bates, as a most beautiful proof of the tlicory of natural 
selection, by sbowiug that a new adaptation, or the formation of a new 
species is not effected by a great and sudden change, but by numerous 
small steps of natural variation and selection. Local conditions favour 
the increase of one or more varieties in a district at the expense of tho 
others, — the selected ones being different in different districts, in the 
case of the varieties of Mechanitis. " With the mimetic species Leptalis 
Theonoe the case is different. We sec here a segregation of local forms 
similar to that of Mechanitis Polymnia ; but we believe we know the con- 
ditions of life of the species, and find that they vary from one locality 
to another. The existence of the species, in each locality, is seen to 
depend on its form and colours, or dress being assimilated to those of 
Ithomice of the same district, such assimilation being apparently its 
only means of escaping extermination by insectivorous animals." And 
indeed the abundance of the mocked species seems to show that it pos- 
sesses some such immimity, and at all events lives mider conditions 
very favourable to its increase and preservation. To exist in a certain 
locality, a Leptalis must wear a certain dress, and those of its varieties 
which do not come up to the mark are rigidly sacrificed. 

It is manifestly impossible in a review to enter fully into all 
the argiunents of the work. All that can be done is to indicate the 
salient points, and abstract the conclusions ; and much as these specu- 
lations of Mr. Bates have interested us, we must content oiu'selves with 
this imperfect resume of them, and refer those who would know more 
upon the subject to the memoir itself. In taking leave of Mr. Bates, 
however, we cannot help expressing the gratification and rare pleasm'e 
we have felt in the perusal of his ' Natm-alist on the Amazons,' in which 
a vast amount of truthful and original information is given, in an 
unobtrusive and unselfish style. The world of natm-alists is under a 
heavy obligation to him for his toilsome and laborious collection of 
facts, and for the interesting, though probably not less laborious, work 
in which they are permanently embodied. Nor must we omit thanks 
to Mr. Darwin, for scremng Mr. Bates's courage to the sticking place, 
without which perhaps the work would never have been written, or at 
all events have been so deferred as to impair its value. The ' Contribu- 
tions to Insect Fauna of the Amazons ' are an important addition to 
Entomological science, and however averse some may be to the theory of 
natural selection, no one can fail to be instructed, as well as interested, 
by the ingenious remarks with which Mr. Bates preludes the systema- 
tic part of the subject. We hail Mr. Bates as a worthy natm-alist- 
traveller, and Avilliugly and gratefully accord to him a well-earned and 
high position amongst those who have advanced science by patient, 
earnest, and original investigation. 

190 Beviews. [Jan. 


Amongst the most startling of cosmical phenomena are the occasional 
appearances of Meteors of extraordinary size and luminosity. Coming 
without the forewarnings of gathering clouds and droj)ping rain, their 
sudden advent in a clear bright sky excites more astonishment in the 
common observer than the most vivid lightning, while the dull booming 
sound which follows their disappearance or explosion has more of 
mystery, and excites more terror than the pealing thunder which 
succeeds the electric flash. 
Almost as transient as — 

" the borealis race 
Which flit ere you can trace then- place," 

the scientific observer is often as much at a loss to tell whence they 
come and whither they go as the ordinary witness of their brilliancy. 
He is generally but conscious of a momentary flash of light, and on 
looking to the heavens sees only the trail, something like a luminous 
scratch in the sky, left by the passing object. A debt of gratitude is 
therefore due to any philosoj)her who, like the author of the opuscule 
we notice, is at the pains to collect and compare the observations of 
any single example made at widely distant stations, and construct 
from the whole a connected narrative. 

On the evening of the 4th of March, 1863, at about seven o'clock, 
Dr. Heis, Professor of Astronomy and Mathematics in the Royal Academy 
of Milnster, was taking a walk in the open air. The sky was clear and 
bright, when suddenly the whole neighbourhood was for a moment 
lighted up as with Bengal fire, and looking upwards the Doctor saw 
passing majestically across the firmament a fire-ball which seemed to 
increase in size until it grew as large as the moon at full. Such an 
appearance of course excited astonishment in all who witnessed it, and 
as the author was known to take an especial interest in these phe- 
nomena,! a few days brought him numerous communications on the 
subject. From these, some contributed by astronomers and physicists 
of great repute, as Baumhauer of Amsterdam, Quetelet of Brussels, 
and Mr. Greg of Manchester, others from writers of no scientific 
repute, but as country clergymen telling no doubt truthfully what they 
believed they saw, and also from the results of his own inquiries 
among the most stupid of Belgian peasants, the author has drawn up 
this complete account of the form, apparent size, colom*, brightness of 
the object, as well as the trail, and the manner in which it disappeared 
or exploded. 

* ' Die grosse Feiierkugel, welche am Abende des 4 Marz, 1863, in Holland, 
Deutschland, Belgien, und England gesehen worden ist.' Von Dr. Ed. Heis, Pro- 
fessor der Matliematik nnd Astronomic an der Konigl. Akademie zu Munster. 
Halle : H.W. Schmidt. 18G3. 

The large fire-ball which was seen in Holland, Germany, Belgium, and Eng- 
land on the evening of tlie 4th of March, 1863, &c. &c. 

t He had puhUshed an account of the large Fire Ball seen in Germany on the 
evening of the 4th December, 1861. 

1 8G4.] Heis's Great Meteor of 18G3. 191 

Tlio Meteor oppcars to have been visible over a hoxaji^onal area, 
the angles of which arc formed by the following places : — Manchester, 
Brighton, Troves, Erbach, Hanover, and the North-coast of the kingdom 
of Hanover. This space encloses more than 100,000 English s(£uare 
miles. The most distant opposite angles in the direction N.W. and 
S.E. are Manchester and Erbach, 553 miles apart ; and fi'om N.E. to 
S.W. Bremen and Brighton, 401 miles distant. 

About the time of the appearance and its duration there is little 
room for diticrcnce of opinion. The author calculates the mean time 
for Miinster at 7h. 6m., and the dm*ation is variously stated to have 
been from 3 to 6 seconds. 

The form and size of the fire-ball are naturally open to wider 
differences of opinion among the observers, but in this instance the 
differences are cajjable of reconciliation. One observer comjmred the 
head of the Meteor to the head of a fish, and remarked that it pro- 
gressed with the movement of a swimming fish. Another compared 
it to a club, the length of which was three times that of the breadth. 
The majority observed that it was pear-shaped, egg-shaped, or fig- 
shaped ; hence the author concludes that it was really ellipsoidal. 
But as most on the Belgian side described it as a " fiery cannon ball," 
the author infers that the longer axis was directed towards that 

The apparent size was mostly compared with some terrestrial 
object. It was said to have been the size of a man's head, a child's 
head, a hen's egg, or a ball 4, 5, or 6 inches in diameter. Many 
said it was the size of the moon, others that its diameter was J, ~, or 
■5 that of the moon. One observer describes it as four times the size 
of the evening star, and another says that at its first appearance it was 
no larger than ordinary star dust (Sternschuppe). 

The description of the coloiu-, also, offers some differences. 
Some say it was of dazzling whiteness, others, a greenish blue, while 
another remarks that the light resembled that of the Electric spark.* 

The colour, however, appears to have been changed by intervening 
media, so that at some stations it was said to be red, deep yellow, dark 
red, or violet. The author beKeves that the real colour of the Meteor 
was red, inasmuch as it appeared of that colom* when at a great height, 
and in bright moonlight. 

The most extraordinary brightness was remarked everywhere ; it 
seemed like the sudden appearance of a full moon in the heavens. Near 
Boppard, an observer on a mountain saw for a moment the valley of the 
Ehine lighted up as by a very bright full moon. At one place, a clergy- 
man could distinguish the letters in a newspaper lying on his table, 
and at Eupen a man could see to read in the street. The shadows of 
objects were throAvn remarkably sharply and well defined ; and the 
confused dance of the shadows of houses and trees, projected as 

* The Eeviower, who was passing along Kegent Steeet, London, on the evening 
in qnestiou, was much startled by the sudden appearance of an extraordinary light, 
which, to him, appeared exactly like tiie light of the electric spark. On looking to 
the sky, he saw nothing but a brilliant line of light which appeared to lie Dearly 
East and West, and seemed three or four yards long. 

192 Beviews. " [Jan. 

the Meteor darted over the " Domplatz " of Munster, formed a most 
peculiar sight. 

The Meteor was seen through the large western windot!^ of the 

Cathedral of Munster (as is shown in our illustration), by an observer 

within the building, and this appearance 

B furnished the author, as we shall presently 
see, with the most important elements from 
which to determine its height and direction. 
So near to the earth did it appear at Miin- 
ster, that people ran to the common before 
the Castle to find it, thinking it must have 
fallen on that spot. It was sought for by 
the peasantry in many places, and in one, 
as we shall see, by the author himself; and 
we are by no means astonished to read that 
at a village near Treves, the peasants said 
Appearance of the Meteor that a fiery cross had fallen from heaven. 

passing tbe west window of « • n j.i j.i, ^ i, n ^ ji 

Miinster Cathedral. As IS usually the case, the fire-ball of the 

4th of March left behind it a line of light 
which showed for a few moments the direction it had taken. By some, 
this is described as a simple straight line of light, and by others, as a 
trail of sparks. One clergyman, however, denies that it left a trail, 
and the author accounts for the invisibility by showing that from 
the geographical position of the observer, the trail must have been 
covered by the object itself. 

The disa2)pearance is variously described by difiierent observers. 
In most places they agree that the Meteor suddenly aj)peared and as 
suddenly disappeared, like lightning. But some assert, that it gave 
off sparks and burst like a rocket ; others say that it burst into small 
pieces, which seemed to be entirely consumed, while one declares 
that it disappeared in blackish vapours, which the author does not 
appear to believe. 

In general it has been remarked that the apparent extinction of an 
object such as that we are describing, has been attended by a noise 
resembling distant thunder. It has invariably been heard when 
meteoric stones have subsequently been found. No fragment of the 
fire-ball of the 4th of March has yet been traced, but it is certain that 
observers, far and near, say they heard a noise. It was not heard in 
large towns, even when they lay near to the spot at which the ball 
disappeared ; but that can be easily accounted for. In some places 
the sound is said to have resembled the rushing noise made by a rocket 
in its flight, or a passing cannon-ball ; in others, it is compared to the 
dull ' bump ' which follows the fall of a heavy body on soft earth. 
We must remark, that the noise waa heard loudest in North Brabant, 
and appeared most distant at Ilanover, from which important conse- 
quences follow. 

Respecting the true path of the Meteor, the observations which 
reached the author left him in no doubt. All the observers in the 
east saw the object towards the west, going from right to left ; while 
those in the west saw it towards the east, and going from left to right 

1864.] Heis's Great Meteor of 18G3. 193 

Thcro wcro others who siipiJoscd it to be going towards tho zenith. 
Two reliable observations furtlicr afforded him tho means of calcula- 
ting with some certainty, both the direction and the height. One of 
these was the observation made in the Miinster Cathedral. The largo 
west window of the cathedral was suddenly lighted up, so that the 
architectiu'al details were all rendered plainly visible, and the observer 
saw the ball pass across in an obliq^ue direction from the right-hand 
corner. From measurement of the distance of the observer from 
the window, and the height of the window, Dr. Heis was enabled to 
calculate two points in the path of the Meteor. 

We may sum up, in a few words, the conclusions at which the 
author arrived from a careful comparison of the various observations 
which reached him. He believes that the fire-ball first became visible 
at a point in the North Sea, about 53' 50' north latitude, and longitude 
5^ east of Greenwich, at a height of 88 miles ; that it travelled from 
north to south, and disappeared in latitude 51° 28', longitude 5^ 18', at 
a height of 17 miles, having in its visible com'se traversed 187 miles in 
4^ seconds, at the rate of 47^ miles in a second. The path inclined 
towards the horizon, at an angle of 22". 

We have said that the author himself believed that the fii"e-ball had 
fallen to the earth. So convinced was he of this, that he made a 
joiu-ney to the place near which he supposed it to have fallen, in order 
to search for and make inquiries after it. He wandered over the 
neighbom'hood of Herzogenbusch, in the north of Flanders, for several 
days, but without success, and departed at last, disappointed indeed, 
yet still hopeful, for he left at the village schools a promise of a large 
reward for any boy who should find a meteoric-stone. 

On all sides, however, he found the impression existed that the 
Meteor had fallen in the immediate neigbourhood, and from the in- 
terval of time which elapsed between the disappearance of the light 
and the observation of the sound in this vicinity, he calculated the 
height at which it exploded. But unfortunately the ideas of the 
Belgian j)easants as to length of the interval were rather vague. Several 
guessed it at five minutes, which was much too long, so the Doctor, 
in his perplexity, appealed to an intelligent cook, who both saw the 
Meteor and was frightened by the noise. In answer to the question, 
" Could she have boiled an egg hard in the interval ? " she replied, 
"Lord bless me, no — not even soft ! — Lord bless me, no; it could not 
have done in double the time ; " and so the interval was reduced from 
five minutes to less than one minute, which was fm'ther diminished by 
other observers to twenty-two or twenty-five seconds. 

If it were solid, and had fallen entire, there would hardly have 
been much difiiculty in finding the object, for Dr. Heis has cal- 
culated that in such a case the earth would suddenly have acquired 
a moimtain as large as one of the Siebengebirge. The diameter of 
the fire-ball he estimates at 1,381 English feet ; but it may be, he 
remarks, that these bodies have only a small nucleus within a luminous 

The cosmical relations of the fire-ball of the 4th of March we must 
dismiss very briefly. The author determined that it moved around tho 

VOL. I. o 

194 Reviews. [Jan. 

sun in a hyperbola, and that it became visible at a point in the heavens 
near the star y Cephei. For the elements of this determination we 
must refer the reader to the little work under review. 

With regard to the chemical comj)osition of fire-balls, Dr. Heis has 
nothing new to tell us. The recent discovery of hydrocarbons, graphite, 
and free sulphm- in stones which have fallen, may lead to the supposi- 
tion that some are wholly combustible in very attenuated air, and we 
may thus account for the phenomena of falling or shooting-stars ; while 
in others the mineral matters may predominate, and these sometimes 
exploding with detonation, fragments fall to the earth constituting 
meteoric stones. 

Eespecting the origin and destination of the Meteors and fire-balls 
we have, of course, no information, and the votaries of modern science 
and of ancient poetry will still continue variously to regard them as 
fresh fuel for oui- flaming sun, or fragments of a shattered world. 


To the minds of laymen the vocation of engineering is not so obviously 
cut up into distinct departments as the better known and older profes- 
sions. While time and the experience which each of us must encounter 
teach all men to distinguish, with some approach to acciu-acy, between 
the many distinct provinces into which the practice of medicine and 
that of law are divided, there are comparatively few persons not con- 
nected with engineering who are aware that the same division of laboiu.' 
which characterizes each of the three so-called learned professions 
may be found to regulate and aid the labours of the engineer. The 
two main lines of the calling are pretty well kno^vn under their relative 
names of Civil, and Mechanical Engineering ; but out of these, and 
especially out of the latter, there spring numerous entirely distinct 
branch lines, each leading and ministering to its own sj)ecial industry, 
and each (to carry out our figure) presided over by a distinct staff of 
management with widely different functions. 

The civil engineers being a more purely professional class than 
their mechanical brethi'en, naturally deal with a wide range of matters, 
and do not greatly tend to split up into specialities ; but the mechani- 
cian being generally a practical man who lives by producing as well 
as scheming machinery, soon finds that his business, to be made pro- 
fitable, must be confined within comparatively narrow limits. 

Hence there arises an immense variety of machine makers, all in- 
cluded under the generic title of mechanical engineers, a body amongst 
whom, taken as a whole, there exists an astonishing amount of practical 
experience and theoretical knowledge ; but each having his owti speci- 
ality out of which it is seldom his wish or his interest to travel. 

This is, however, quite a recent state of things in the profession. 

* 'Mills and Millwork.' By W. Fahbairn, Esq., C.E., LL.D., F.R.S., F.G.S., 
&c. 2 vols. Longmans. 

1864.] Fairbaibn's Mills and Mllhcorlc. 196 

Some fifty years ago, wlicn tlio machinist's art was in its infancy, 
the " millwright," who may fairly bo considered as tlie ancestor of 
mechanical engineers, was far from special in his pursuits. In the 
best cases he was, to use Mr. Fairbairn's own words, " the sole repre- 
sentative of mechanical art. He was the engineer of the district in 
which he lived ; a kind of Jack of -all-trades who coidd with eq^ual 
facility work at the lathe, the anvil, or the carjjcnter's bench. Generally 
he was a fair arithmetician, knew something of geometry, levelling, 
and mensuration, and, in some cases, possessed a very competent 
knowledge of practical mathematics. Ho could calculate tlie velocities, 
strength, and power of machines ; coidd draw in plan and section, and 
could construct buildings, conduits, or water-coiu'ses in all the foi-ms 
and under all the conditions required in his professional practice ; he 
could build bridges, cut canals, and perform a variety of work now 
done by civil engineers. Such was the character and condition of the 
men who designed and carried out most of the mechanical work of this 
country up to the middle and end of the last century." 

In the course of the great modern expansion of the mechanical arts, 
the old millwright has become very nearly extinct, and the wide field 
in which he laboured has been partitioned among several craftsmen. 
The domain of mill- work is, however, still very comprehensive, while 
it is not surpassed in importance by any other branch of mechanical 

Mill-work may properly be said to include every engineering 
process involved in the construction both of the buildings and 
machinery employed in producing consumable manufactures, including 
every species of motive power, whether derived from wind, water, or 
steam. Mr. Fairbairn's book is a practical and, in some particulars, 
an exhaustive treatise on each of these subjects, which are judiciously 
divided into five sections, comprising — 1. Introduction, with a sketch 
of the early history of mills. 2. The principles of mechanism. 3. 
On prime movers. 4. On the machinery of transmission. 5. On the 
arrangement of mills. Of the tvvo first sections we have little to say ; 
both might have been omitted without detriment to the merits of the 
work ; it is only after we have skimmed the cm'ious information of the 
fin'st, and glanced at the familiar elementary mechanics of the second 
section, that we begin to find the great storehouse of the author's 
original experiences open, or to recognize what an enormous amount 
and variety of actual j^ractice is here reduced, tabulated, and made 
ready for the daily use of the millwright and engineer. 

Throughout the whole of his Avork, but especially in the second 
and latest published volume with which we have more particularly to 
deal, Mr. Fairbairn is essentially " practical." It is a notewoi-thy fact 
that in spite of the aid which mathematical science afibrds to the engi- 
neer, our best machinists and our best machinery are less the result of 
applied mathematical investigation than of intuitive judgment backed 
by the time-honoiu-ed rule of thumb. It is true that the matliematician's 
aid is in every-day use in ascertaining the direction and intensity of 
strains and calculating the resisting powers of the various parts of 
machinery, but even through all the elaborate tables and rules given 

o 2 

196 Beviews. " [Jan^ 

by om* author for the determination of the proportions of gearing, 
shafts, or any other portion of mill work, the fact transpires, that the 
mathematics have been fitted to the practice, and not the practice to 
the mathematics. Nor is this peculiar to Mr. Fairbairn ; on the con- 
trary, a similar tendency has pervaded the work of our best engineers, 
so that it has almost come to be believed by some, that a great mathe- 
matical capacity is inconsistent with unusual mechanical ability. 

Though this is a question of much interest, we do not propose to 
discuss it here, but merely remark, in passing, that Mr. Fairbairn's 
work is certainly another and weighty argument put into the mouths 
of those who hold that the great masters in the mechanical craft have 
ever used pure mathematics as a very humble kind of servant, treating 
her mainly as a custos rerum, or a means of making the results of their 
great natural intuition and observation common property for their 
inferiors or successors. 

The second and recently published volume of the work opens with 
Section 4, and contains an elaborate investigation into the wide subject 
of the machinery of transmission. Amongst one of the most important 
general conclusions on this subject, towards which Mr. Fairbairn con- 
ducts the reader, is that of the superiority of toothed gearing over straps 
or other v^rapping connectors for purposes of transmission. It is well 
to have our attention called to this point at a time when the example of 
American engineers has produced a strong feeling in favour of strap- 
ping as compared with gear, and Mr. Fairbairn does good service in 
pointing out the superiority of wheelwork. The advantages which can 
be claimed for straps are smoothness of motion, noiselessness of action, 
and perhaps smallness of first cost ; but they are cmnbrous, frequently 
out of repair, destructive in their effects on the journals, and wholly 
inapplicable in cases where the motion requires to be transmitted in a 
constant ratio. One of tlie drawbacks to a freer use of toothed wheels 
has hitherto been found in the great expense of truly shaped and fitted 
gears ; but the introduction of the wheel-moulding machine, with its 
consequent improvement in the truth of teeth in cast-wheels, is likely 
to bring wheelwork into more extensive use than at present. 

The chapters on the teeth of wheels would be little more than a 
recapitulation of the ordinary mathematical demonstration of their true 
form were it not for the introduction of a most useful series of practical 
tables, from one or other of which, as if from a ready reckoner, every 
problem concerning any required wheel may be instantly solved, 
whether it relate to the stiength, pitch, thickness, depth, clearance, 
or horses' power to be transmitted through a particular tooth.* 

* Among the drawings given of various forms of teetli is one wliich, like tlie 
table just referred to, illustrates the very practical natiu-e of this treatise. Our 
mechanical readers are, of course, aware that in most demonstrations of the Epicy- 
cloidal tooth that particular form having its flanks formed by hypocycloids, which 
are also radial lines, is almost exclusively dealt with. Now this is a tooth whicli, 
notwithstanding the simplicity of its delineation, is rarely iised in practice, because 
of its inlicrcnt weakness ; so, although we get, as usual, some prominence given 
in the demonstration to the radial hypocycloid, Mr. Fairbairn's practical bent does 
not permit him to leave his reader without giving a figure of the " teeth of a large 
wheel, traced from one of my own patterns, to exhibit the form which practice has 

18G4.] Faikbairn's Mills and Milhoorh 197 

The remaining cbai)tcrs on the macliinery of transmission deal 
chiefly with shafting and its details. Next to the practice of dividing 
labour into minute departments, and making each man's work a task of 
repetition, the factory system dej)cnds for its economy of i^roduction on 
the concentration of a large nvunber of machines under one building. 
Some years ago, before this plan was carried to its present extent, 
it was common in mills to have sej)arate water-wheels to every machine ; 
but, as trade developed, the true principle of concentrating the motive 
power soon forced itself into notice. No sooner did it become the 
custom to use either one large water-wheel or steam-engine to drive 
the whole factory, than the question of shafting for the transmission 
of power to the distant parts of the building began naturally to receive 
attention. In order to show to what an extent this system of trans- 
mission has been carried, we may mention that, at the great Saltaire 
Mills, more than two miles of shafting is employed. Nowhere, per- 
haps, throughout his work, does Mr. Fairbairn give more full, accu- 
rate, and usefid information in a tabulated form than on the subject of 
shafting, while the practical examples of couplings, clutches, joiu'nals, 
and brackets, illustrated by detail drawings, comprise every modern 
design of value. 

Section 5, on the arrangement of mills, opens with some very 
interesting remarks and information on mill architectm-e. It is true 
that Mr. Fairbairn does not touch at all upon that frequently agitated 
question, the shortcomings of the engineer as an architect, but his 
sketches and observations tend to bring it closely before us. A 
recent wi'iter very well remarked, in speaking of the relations between 
the engineer and the architect, that, in consequence of the entirely 
opposite views which either of the two take of their respective profes- 
sions, the "architects are quarrelling over Greek mouldings and 
Gothic pinnacles, and di'eaming of reproducing the elegance of classical 
times, while the engineers p,re spanning our rivers with structm-es such 
as the world never saw before, ai'ching under our mountains, and 
roofing acres for stations. They are, in fact executing a series of 
works which throw everything else hitherto done into the shade ; but 
all this, unfortunately, without that touch of higher art which is alone 
wanted for perfection, and this simply because the building profession 
is divided against itself, because its two branches are conducted on 
principles so much at variance that they cannot work together. 
The engineers cannot forego theirs, because they are the only prin- 
ciples which men of sense can follow ; so unless the architects will 
consent to waive some of their archfeological fancies, we may be 
condemned to live in the midst of ugliness for ever. When once 
this fact is appreciated, we shall sui'pass all preceding ages in architec- 

shown to be desirable." In this specimen, as might have been expected, the flanks 
of the teeth are generated by a small describing circle, whose hypocycloid gives a 
tooth admirably proportioned and amply strong in the root. This is a small 
matter, perhaps, but not an unimportant one. No yoimg student of mechanical 
engineering is likely to be led astray by Mr. Fairbairn, and the teeth of the wheel, 
" traced from my own pattern," are a good sample of the principle on which the 
whole of the book is written. 

198 Bevieios. [Jan. 

tare as we have done in engineering. To call architecture back within 
the domain of conamon sense is what is most wanted on the part of the 
engineers to complete the services they have rendered and are render- 
ing to mankind." 

Whether brought about by architects or engineers, there is, how- 
ever, a great change for the better in the artistic treatment of mill 
buildings. Mr. Fairbairn gives us a sketch of a very slight attempt 
at architectural effect with which he succeeded, in 1826, in replacing 
the old boxlike form of mill, and there is no doubt that much of the 
credit of modern improvement in this respect is due to him. There 
is still room, however, for the advent of that architect of the future 
alluded to by the writer from whom we have quoted above. 

Among the most interesting descriptions of mills actually erected 
by our author which occupy the larger and latter haK of his second 
volume is the Tagam*og Corn Mill, on the north shore of the Black 
Sea, constructed for the Eussian Government, and originally intended 
for the doixble piu-pose of supplying the Eussian navy with biscuit, 
and facilitating the export of Eussian grain in the shape of flom-. 
The terms of the Paris treaty of peace, stipulating that no vessel of 
war should be retained on the Black Sea, have modified the original 
objects contemplated in the erection of these mills, and they are now 
used only for the purpose of grinding, dressing, &c. The mill con- 
tains 36 pairs of stones arranged on Mr. Fairbaim's longitudinal 
principle, and possesses every requisite for grinding 180 to 200 bushels 
of wheat per hotu'. 

During the siege of Sebastopol it was determined by the English 
Government to supply the troops daily with fresh iloiu* from the grain 
of the surrounding country, and the description of the ' Bruiser ' 
floating mill and bakery is one of the most generally interesting in the 
book. This vessel was fitted up internally precisely in the same 
manner as an ordinary mill, the power being derived from her screw 
engines. Without the sketches it is difficult to extract an intelligible 
description of the floating mill, but we learn that, " During the time 
the vessel was in Balaclava harbom-, the daily produce of floxu' was 
about 24,000 lbs. It was originally intended that the miU should be 
capable of producing 20,000 lbs. of bread per day, but it proved equal 
to a considerably larger production. The total quantity of bread 
tiu-ned out in the three months from January to March, 1856, was 
1,284,747 lbs., and the expenses of working were 2,017Z. or 3s. 2d. 
per 100 lbs. of bread made. The quantity of flom* ground in the same 
time was 1,331,792 lbs., with 358,172 lbs. of bran ; the expenses of 
working were 2,050Z., or 3s. Id. per 100 lbs. of flour i)roduced. The 
total cost of the flom- produced was about 25s. M. per 100 lbs., the wheat 
costing about 18s. per 100 lbs. The grinding of the wheat was found 
to be performed quite satisfactorily while the vessel was at sea, even 
in a heavy swell causing an excessive motion." 

Bearing in mind the success of this experiment and the import- 
ance of fresh flom- and bread to the health of troops, Mr. Fairbairn 
suggests the propriety of " a light portable steam-engine and mill 
for grinding being constantly attached to the camp whenever an 

1864.] Fairbairn's Mills and Millwork. 199 

army takes the field. The whole affair would not exceed the weight 
of one of our heavy siege-guns, and there would bo no practical diffi- 
culty in the way of introducing an engine capal)le of sujtplying 
newly-baked bread from an oven constructed in the smoke-box of a 
portable locomotive engine, mounted on wheels and prepared to grind 
at the same time." Here is another direction in which the ingenuity 
of mechanicians may be made to serve tlio interests of military prac- 
tice, somewhat more peaceable than that which is leading many of our 
best mechanical engineers to become either artillerists or armour- 

Our limits do not permit us to follow Mr. Fairbairn through the 
descriptions of flax, cotton, oil, gimpowder, and paper mills, all of 
which are more than usually valuable, as they contain, in almost every 
case, the story of his own doings, and the result of his own practice. 
As the most successful and most extensive master-millwright in the 
world, Mr. Fairbairn has done good service to the profession of en- 
gineering by the publication of this work. The subject is one on 
which there has been a singular dearth of published information ; 
most other important branches of engineering have been treated at 
length by more or less able authors, but the mysteries of the mill- 
wi'ight's craft have been hitherto preserved mainly in oral tradi- 
tions and empirical rules. No fitter person than Mr. Fairbairn could 
have been found to give this floating information a shape. Com- 
mencing his work as a millwright some fifty years ago, he found the 
practice of mill-work in a most primitive condition. By the applica- 
tion of new principles, by the concentration of motive power, the 
substitution of cast-iron wheelwork for the old and cumbrous forms 
of wooden gear, the improvement of water-wheels by the invention of 
ventilating buckets, the use of the steam-engine as a prime mover, and 
last, not least, the introduction of wi*ought-iron shafting of small 
diameter, he brought about just such a revolution in the millwi'ight's 
art as the increasing commercial activity of his time demanded. Like 
most men who attain celebrity, William Fairbairn has worked hand in 
hand with circmnstances. His professional career commenced, to use 
his own words, "just at a time when the coimtry was recovering from 
the eflects of a long and disastrous war, and he was enabled, from this 
circumstance, to grow up with, and follow out conscientiously, neaidy 
the whole of the discoveries, improvements, and changes that have 
since taken place in mechanical science." Hence it was that he was 
enabled to apply his great natm-al mechanical abilities with so much 
success towards the fm-ther development of our industrial resources 
and the extension of oui* trade throughout the globe. 

200 Reviews. [Jan. 


The liigliest attainment of Natural-History science is to describe 
accui'ately tlie living inhabitants of the earth. This can only be done 
by the slow and laborious process of making catalogues of the plants • 
and animals of particular localities. Such catalogues are of little use 
to those ignorant of natural-history studies, and can only be compiled 
by those who have made the greatest progi-ess, and are competent 
critically to pronounce that the forms alleged to have been foimd in 
a particular locality are truly the forms named by some standard 
authority. It is no wonder then, that so little has been done towards 
giving an exact account of the animals and plants of any particTilar 
district. Of all parts of the world, the British Islands afford the 
best opportunity for such a study, and perhaps there is no country 
where so much has been done in this direction. The work is, how- 
ever, still very imperfect. Om' lists of animals and plants, such as are 
comprehended in our Floras and Faunas, do not pretend to give the 
localities, excepting generally where any particular species has been 
found to occur. The relation which a local Flora bears to a general 
Flora, is well seen in Professor Babington's ' Manual of the British 
Flora,' and his list of plants in the ' Flora of Cambridgeshire.' In 
the one, the species of j)lants are given which occur throughout Great 
Britain, and the locality is only generally stated by the county or dis- 
trict in which it grows ; in the other, every locality in which a par- 
ticular plant is known to occm", is given. 

It is only when plants and animals are studied in the last- 
mentioned way, that the causes of their growth and distribution 
can be expected to be discovered. It is evident to all who pass 
through a limited or large space of country, that the growth of plants 
is very varied, and no one can fail to be impressed with the fact, 
that there are certain causes acting which produce this great variety 
of distribution. A cursoxy examination shows that such influences as 
temperature, moisture, water, and composition of soil are at work, and 
general laws can be laid down according to which certain groups of 
plants are found to flourish or disappear. It is, however, as we come 
to examine individual sjiecies, that we find no explanation can be 
given of their absence and abundance ; and closer observation of the 
connection between each species and the soil, and other conditions of 
their growth, are demanded for the purposes of satisfactorily affording 
the basis of the laws of their distribution. Much has been done in 
this direction, and we are indebted to the laborious efforts of Mr. H. 
C. Watson, to reduce to something like general order what is at pre- 
sent known of the distribution of English plants. 

Apart, however, from the scientific interest that attaches to the 

* ' Flora of Sui-rey ; or, a Catalogue of the Flowering Plants and Trees found 
in the County.' By James Alexander Brewer. London : J. Van Voorst. 

' Floiu of Marlborougli ; with Notices of the Birds and a Sketch of the Geo- 
logical Features of the Nciglibourhoud.' London : J. Van Voorst. 

1864.] Local Floras. 201 

acciu-ato description of plants in particular localities, they have their 
value in directing the attention of students to places where they can 
find species which otherwise would escape their attention. It is 
perhaps to this fact that we arc indebted for the publication of local 
Floras as separate works at all. The publication of such works has 
been especially called for and produced by the formation of local 
Naturalists' Field Clubs. Tliese Associations, devoting themselves to 
the exploration of the natural history of the localities in which they 
occur, collect a great quantity of information, and it is to such a 
Society that the public is indebted for one of the Floras named at the 
commencement of this article. 

We are also indebted to other" Clubs in various parts of this 
coimty for similar works. Nothing can be more conducive to 
health, both of mind and body, than such Associations, and a public 
is thus formed capable of appreciating and using Local Floras such as 
those above mentioned. 

It is also very desirable, when the study of Natural History is cul- 
tivated in schools and families, that guides to the treasures which arc 
to be found in the immediate neighboui-hood should be possessed by 
the pupils as incentives to the collection of particular or rare kinds of 
natural-history objects. 

It is a mistake to suppose that natm-al objects can only be success- 
fully studied in their larger or more striking forms ; it is the objects 
which are found at every man's door that become the field for the 
grandest and most important discoveries. Lyonnet has made for him- 
self an undying reputation by the study of the anatomy of the cater- 
pillar of the common privet hawk moth. Huber studied the bees in 
his own garden and the immediate neighboiu'hood of his residence. 
White has made Selboui*ne a classical spot for all time by the study 
of the habits of the animals within a mile of his own house. The 
finest illustrations of his beautiful theory of the origin of species 
were derived by Darwin, not from his studies as a naturalist who 
had voyaged round the world, but as a country gentleman who had 
studied the habits of the tenements of his dovecote, and the relations 
of the cats, mice, bees, and clovers in his own paddock. Fascinating 
as the prospect must be to every young and ardent lover of nature to 
traverse the ocean, and view its wonders imder tropical suns, or pierc- 
ing the rich forests of the torrid zones, to behold for the first time 
with hmnan eyes, the forms of animal and vegetable life they may 
contain, there is nothing more certain than that the fixed and quiet 
study of natm-al objects at home can be made as rich a soiu'ce of intel- 
lectual pleasure, and important discovery, as traversing distant, 
though more fertile fields. 

It is mth much pleasm'e, then, that we direct attention to two 
works which have been recently published on Local Natm-al History. 
They are both called ' Floras,' at the same time they ai-e both some- 
thing more than a mere catalogue of plants and their localities. In 
both we are supplied with maps of the district, to the elucidation of the 
botany of which they are devoted. In both we have a sketch of the 
geology of the part of the coimtry in which the plants are found, a 

202 Meviews. [Jan. 

recognition of the relations of the plants to the soil in which they 
grow, of considerable importance. To the ' Flora ' of Marlborough there 
is also added a list of birds found in the neighbourhood of that place. 
We should be glad to see the practice of combining lists of plants and 
animals followed up so that every student of natm-al history may be 
supplied with a knowledge of whatever forms of life exist aroimd him, 
in whatever direction his particular tastes may lead him. 

Of the two works before us the most unpretending is the ' Flora 
of Marlborough.' It is the production of Mr. T. A. Preston, who is 
too modest to place his name upon the title-page, but he dates from 
Marlborough College. He says, in his preface, the work was " under- 
taken mainly for the purpose of assisting those members of the 
College who may be fond of Botany." We are sure all friends of a 
more extended education than is at present aiforded in our great 
educational establishments, will congratulate Marlborough College on 
the production within its walls of this contribution to Local Natui'al 
History. We do not know whether any direct encouragement is given 
to the study of Natural History at Marlborough, but we regard this 
publication as one of many other indications that natui-al science is 
beginning to excite attention, and its claims to a place in the curri- 
culum of school studies recognized. 

In the list of plants j)resented by Mr. Preston he confines himself 
to the limit of a circle with a radius of six miles from Marlborough. 
This circle is divided into four districts, and lies principally ui^on the 
chalk formation, so that little opportunity is given for the comj)a- 
rison of plants occurring on different geological strata. 

The arrangement of plants followed is that of Professor Babington, 
in the fourth edition of his ' Manual of British Botany.' The author 
has done this from the conviction that, although Bentham's ' Hand 
Book ' is extremely useful for those beginning the study of Botany, 
and has many excellent points about it, yet the wholesale manner in 
which Bentham has imited what have generally been regarded as dis- 
tinct species, and described them imperfectly, as varieties, have induced 
him to prefer Babington's book. 

The list of plants is preceded by some remarks on the ' Geological 
Features of Marlborough,' by W. G. Adams, Esq. This essay is 
devoted to the description of too small a i)ortion of the earth's siu'face 
to call for criticism, but it is evidently the production of one who has 
studied the geology of the district, and contains an interesting expo- 
sition of the causes that have been at work in the production of the 
chalk, and the beds that lie above it in the neighbourhood of 
Marlborough. We may, however, ventnre to say that we think the 
Diatomaceous theory of the production of flints in the chalk, as 
propounded by Mr. Adams, is hardly borne out by the facts of the case. 
Whether the silex of flints was once in the form of the skeletons of 
Diatoms is perhaps a question, but wo have no knowledge of any facts 
which could lead to the conclusion that flints are produced as the 
result of a conglomeration of the skeletons of Diatoms. 

Of the list of plants we have nothing further to say than that it 
is printed on the plan of Professor Babington's ' Flora of Cambridge,' 

1864.] Local Floras. 203 

and tliat for every locality given for a plant the initials of the name 
of the observer are attached. 

The list of birds has been drawn up by E. B. Smith, Esq., of 
Corpus Christi College, Oxford. The notes attached to the name of 
each bird are interesting, and will be found to make this part of the 
work much easier reading than the list of plants. It would not per- 
haps be found impossible in Local Floras to make notes to the plants 
which might be instructive to the beginner in Botany. 

The Flora of Sm-rey is much the most important volume of the 
two. It is three times the size of the last ; has two valuable coloured 
maps ; embraces the plants of a county ; has a history ; and has been 
produced by men not unknown to fame. Who that has studied Natiu-al 
History the last quarter of a century, is not acquainted with the 
papers of " Kusticus, of Godalming ? " It was the late J. D, Salmon, 
of Godalming, with a few friends interested in the study of plants, 
who first resolved, at a meeting held in the town of Guildford, to pro- 
cure materials for the publication of a Flora of the county of Surrey. 
Mr. Salmon undertook the task of editing this Flora, and had pro- 
ceeded to some considerable extent with his task when he died. At 
the sale of his eifects, in the autumn of 1861, all his MSS., and a rich 
collection of plants which he had formed, were pui-chased by the 
Holmesdale Natural History Club, and those materials were placed in 
the hands of the author of the ' Flora of Reigate,' for publication. No 
one could be better fitted for the work, and Mr. Brewer has now pro- 
duced a Flora which, for accui-acy and extent, stands uni-ivalled 
amongst the Local Floras of Great Britain. 

As already stated, this work is accompanied with two maps ; on one 
of them the county is divided into nine divisions, to each of which a 
letter is attached. Each plant is referred to in the list, as it is found 
in one or other of these divisions. The second is a geological map, 
which has been drawn and colom-ed from one laid down by Mr. Joseph 
Prestwich. The work opens with an Introduction on the Physical 
Geography and Botanical Divisions of the county of Surrey, which, we 
are informed, was written by the late J. D. Salmon. It is an interest- 
ing geological and geographical account of the coimty of Sm-rey. 

The list of plants is very copious, and the arrangement and nomen- 
clature generally adopted are those of the fifth edition of the ' London 
Catalogue of British Plants.' We should have preferred the plan of 
following some British Manual, and in this respect we think the plan 
of the Marlborough Flora the best. The notices of localities ai'e very 
numerous, and the names of the specimens are at once guai'antees of 
the accm'acy of the observations. 

The most interesting parts of tlie volume to the general stiident 
will be found in the Appendices, of which there are fom*. In the 
first is given a list of plants introduced to the coimtry, and not tho- 
roughly naturalized. The second contains a list of plants found on 
the Thames side, near Wandsworth and Battersea, and which are 
imdoubtedly introduced plants from seed brought to this locality by 
the presence of a large distillery situated at the waterside. They 
nevertheless have their interest in showing how plants from distant 

204 Beviews. [Jan, 

comities may be introduced and become natm-aKzed. The thii-d 
Appendix consists of a table showing tbe geological distribution of 
plants in the county. From this table we gather that the number of 
plants known to occur on all strata is 117. The number confined 
to the valley alluvimn, 7 ; to the superficial gravels, 19 ; to the 
Bagshot sands, 9 ; to the London clay, 14 ; to the Beading and Wool- 
wich beds, 2 ; to the chalk, 55 ; to the upper greensand and gault, 5 ; 
and to the lower greensand, 28. The last Appendix gives the relative 
proportion of the plants of the United Kingdom to those enumerated 
in the Sm-rey Flora, and also the proportion which the number of 
species in each natural order in Surrey bears to the total amount in 
the country. From this table we find that Surrey is deficient in the 
following natural orders :■ — FranJceniacece, Tamariscacece, lllecehracece, 
Plumhaginacece, Eleeagnacece, AristolocJiiacece, Emjpetracece, and Erio- 
caulonece. It will at once be seen that none of these are common 

The Flora of Sm-rey contains altogether 984 species, besides 65 well- 
marked varieties. The following five plants are believed to be pecu- 
liar to Surrey. Impatiens fulva, Teucrium Botrys, Lilium Martagon, 
Digitalis sanguinalis, and Buxus sempervirens. The latter, the common 
Box, is well known throughout England, but is not thoroughly natu- 
ralized in any other county. 

From what we have said, it must be seen that the Flora of Surrey 
is a most valuable and laborious work, and deserves to be in the hands 
not only of every lover of Natm-al History in the county of SmTey, but 
in those of every student of Botany throughout the country. We are 
glad to observe a good list of subscribers, and wish that our good 
opinion of the work may be the means of increasing its sale, and en- 
couraging Local Natural History societies to follow the good example 
of the Holmesdale Natural History Club. 


( 205 ) 


On the Highest Magnifying Power of 
the Microscope yet employed. 

In giving a very brief summary of 
my recent observations upon the 
mode of termination of the nerves 
in voluntary muscle, the editor of 
'Cosmos,' for August 28th, 1863, 
remarks : — " Nous regrettons pour 
notre compte que M. Beale n'ait 
pas dit dans sa note avec quel genre 
d'oculaires et avec quel jeu de len- 
tilles il a pu obtenir le prodigieux 
grossissement de 3,000 fois." 

I propose in the present short 
communication to describe briefly 
how my drawings representing ob- 
jects magnified to this extent were 
obtained. In making drawings of 
microscopical objects, it is usual to 
represent the image the size it 
appears when thrown upon paper 
with the aid of the camera or 
neutral tint glass I'efiector at the 
distance of 10 inches from the eye, 
the arbitrary point at which the 
magnifying power of object-glasses 
is measured. If the image be taken 
at a point nearer to the eye it ap- 
peal's smaller ; while, at a greater 
distance, it of course appears much 
larger than at the arbitrary distance 
above stated. Large diagrams may 
indeed be made direct from the 
'microscope, by placing the diagram 
paper at the distance of 3 feet or 
more from the eye, and tracing 
upon it with a long pencil the ob- 
ject as reflected from the neutral 
tint glass reflector. 

In practice, I have often found 
it almost impossible to represent, 
in drawings, lines as fine as those 
seen in the preparation. A certain 
coarseness is inevitable. The copied 

lines and markings appear rougher 
and thicker than the real ones. 
But this defect is to some extent 
removed by drawing the'' object 
somewhat larger than it appears to 
be magnified at the distance of 10 
inches from the eye ; and, in order 
to obtain uniform results, I always 
draw the object the size it would 
appear if copied on the same level 
as the stage of the microscope. 
The scale for measurement is copied 
at precisely the same distance. A 
glass which at 10 inches is said to 
magnify 200 diameters will magnify 
215, and my high jjower, which was 
made for me two years since by 
Messrs. Powell and Lealand, instead 
of magnifying about 1,600 dia- 
meters, increases the image of the 
object to 1,800 diameters. By in- 
creasing the length of the tube of 
the microscope between 4 and 5 
inches, I obtain an amplification 
amounting to 3,000 diameters, and 
the -jg^ of an English inch becomes 
3 inches in length. 

With care in illumination, I have 
been able to see points in an object 
magnified with this power which I 
had failed to observe under a power 
of 2,000. It seems to me probable 
that I may succeed in increasing 
the power to 5,000 diameters ; and 
with this object I am trying different 
plans, the results of which shall be 
recorded shortly. The common 
paraffin lamp gives a very white and 
good light for working with these 
high magnifying powers. I have 
tried the lime light, but have as yet 
reaped no advantages from its use. 

So far I have certainly obtained 
better results by increasing the 
length of the tube of the microscope 


Notes and Correspondence. 


than by increasing the magnifying 
power of the eyepiece, which ac- 
cords with the results of some 
experiments performed many years 
ago by Dr. Carpenter. Of course, 
the practical utility of increasing the 
magnifying power entirely depends 
upon the character of the specimen. 
Into the question of preparing spe- 
cimens I must not, however, now 
enter, further than to say that my 
specimens are immersed in the 
strongest glycerine that can be pro- 
cured. I never represent a struc- 
ture more highly magnified than is 
necessary to bring out the points ; 
but I find that, with an improved 
method of preparation, I desire 
higher magnifying powers; and I 
am quite certain that great advan- 
tages will be reaped when powers 
far higher than any yet made or 
thought of shall be brought to bear 
upon many structures. The ques- 
tion of preparation is scarcely more 
than a mechanical one, and new and 
more exact means of preparation 
will soon follow improvements in 
the optical part of the microscope. 

It should be stated that many 
specimens of muscular fibre, nerve 
fibres, nerve cells, &c., have been 
prepared, so that they can be mag- 
nified 3,000 diameters, and points 
can be made out (as, for example, 
what appears a single fibre can be 
resolved into several) which cannot 
be seen, or, at any rate, have not 
been observed, by an ordinary mag- 
nifying power. 

The object-glass I have employed 
is the first twenty-sixth made for 
me by Messrs. Powell and Lealand, 
which is a most excellent working 
glass. That it defines exceedingly 
well, and admits plenty of light, is 
obvious from the fact that it will 
allow of the tube being increased in 
length. By a working glass I mean 
one that can be employed without 
trouble or difficulty, and does not 
require any elaborate arrangements 
with regard to illumination, adjust- 
ment, &c. In fact, I use it without 
even a condenser, employing only 
the common concave mirror. There 
is plenty of room for focussing, 

although, of course, specially thin 
glass or mica must be employed. 
I have made and published many 
drawings of tissues of the higher 
animals magnified with this glass, 
and it need scarcely be said, that 
as it can be brought to bear upon 
textures of this class (even bone 
and teeth), thin sections of which 
are obtained only with great diffi- 
culty, it must be readily applicable 
to other departments of microscopi- 
cal inquiry. 

Lionel S. Beale, F.R.S. 
King's College^ London. 

Scientific Education and Natural- 
History Science in the Kingdom 
of Italy. 

Genoa, Nov. 18, 1863. 

The state of science and scientific 
education in Italy at the present 
moment, when this country is on 
the point of emergence from political 
nonentity, and is beginning to feel 
that it is one of the great powers of 
Europe, possesses pecuhar interest, 
and may well justify a few remarks 
in an English journal established 
to record the progress of science. 

Itself the birthplace of many de- 
partments of human knowledge, as 
well as of many of those men who 
have been most distinguished in 
science as well as art, Italy still 
contains, or has only vei-y recently 
lost, men of European reputation in 
Physics, in Astronomy, in Geology, 
in Zoology, and in Botany ; and 
though some of the most eminent 
of those now living have been 
diverted from their ordinary pur- 
suits by the pressing claims of po- 
litical events, and the absolute 
necessity that all true men should 
unite in securing the one great ob- 
ject of nationality and unity, there 
is abundant proof of healthy activity 
which in due season may be expected 
to yield great results. 

The Universities of Italy have 
gradually become lowered in general 
reputation, owing to the extreme 
facility afforded to very young men 
to pass examinations and obtain 


Notes and Correspondence. 


diplomas. Each seat of education 
has outbid its fellows in this respect 
till the result has become very 
serious, and a gi'eat efibrt is now 
being made to raise the standard of 
education throughout the country. 
The University of Pisa, always 
among the most celebrated, has 
especially recommended itself to 
observation for its eflbrts in this 
direction. At first the natural 
result was to frighten away so many 
students as to reduce the numbers 
very gi'eatly ; but already it is found 
that the degree there conferred is 
much more valuable, and that it is 
worth while to take the additional 
trouble to pass. To Professor 
Matteucci, whose researches in elec- 
tricity and general physics, are as 
well known in England as in Italy 
and France, much of the credit of 
this is due. M. Matteucci has now 
left Pisa, and is established at Turin, 
where he has already occupied for 
some time the important post of 
Minister of Public Instruction. It 
is not unlikely that he may again 
be appointed, and it would seem 
that a more fit appointment could 
not be made. 

One of the latest improvements 
in Public Instruction has been the 
foundation of a normal school at 
Pisa, on the footing of the upper 
normal schools of France, but with 
the object of securing a really well- 
informed class of schoolmasters for 
the education of all classes through- 
out Italy. Of this establishment. 
Professor Yillari, the able author of 
the ' Life of Savaronola,' recently 
translated into English by Mr. L. 
Horner, is the director, and he is 
assisted by an excellent staff" of pro- 
fessors in all departments. During 
the last academical year, the number 
of students was only about 20, but 
the entries for the year now com- 
mencing (November, 1863) are 
already much more numerous. 
Several of the students have passed 
their University examinations with 
honour, and are admitted to the 
normal school at the public expense. 
Others pay a sum of 80 francs 
(3/. 4s.) per month during their 

residence. AU reside in the build- 
ing, and dine together as in an 
English college. The system adopted 
partakes both of the professorial 
system as carried out in Germany, 
and of the tutorial system common 
at Oxford and Cambridge. 

The public museums both at Pisa 
and Florence, are admirable. Both 
are particularly rich in wax prepara- 
tions, illustrative of Comparative 
Anatomy and Potany. The former 
is also rich in geological specimens. 
The various minerals and rocks of 
Tuscany, and the fossils of the 
Valley of the Arno are especially 
interesting, not only to the general 
traveller, but to the technical geolo- 
gist ; for Italy is beyond all other 
countries in Europe that one in 
which the phenomena of metamor- 
phism can best be studied. The 
neighbourhood of Pisa, with the 
country a little to the south towards 
Volterra, affords indeed the best 
key to the very difficult and com- 
plicated changes that have aff"ected 
rocks of almost all kinds within 
periods of very various duration. 
In this part of the world, mineral 
character is no guide to the age of 
rocks, and fossils, though they exist 
and have proved extremely valuable 
in skilful hands, are so exceedingly 
rare and imperfect, that no traveller 
however acute, who trusted to his 
own observation, could hope to do 
much with them in a lapid journey. 
The labours of Professor Paolo Savi 
andProfessorMeneghiui have greatly 
tended to simplify and explain the 
matter, and assisted by the memoir 
and very admirable maps just pre- 
pared for publication by Professor 
Savi, no one need now waste his 
time. The memoir in question is, 
however, published in a volume on 
the general statistics of the district, 
and is not altogether accessible. 

It is not generally known that 
this small corner of Italy around 
Pisa contains a tolerably complete 
series of formations. There are 
old pala^ozic schists greatly altered, 
but recognizable, ovei*laid by car- 
boniferous rocks, in which anthra- 
cite represents the coal. Over these 


Notes and Correspondence. 


altered rocks is a good representa- 
tion of the trias, and the lower lias 
is seen in those wonderful beds of 
statuary and other marble that are 
so well known and highly esteemed. 
Above these, are Jurassic rocks, and 
above these again neacomian sand- 
stones, while the chalk is seen in 
the Alberese, a peculiar limestone 
sometimes approaching marble in 
colour, but not saccharoidal. Ter- 
tiaries of all ages abound in Tuscany, 
from the lowest nummulitic rocks 
to the most recent gravels. 

Tuscany abounds also in metals. 
With Elba close at hand, it may be 
supposed that there is no lack of 
iron. Copper ore, the purest and 
most valuable known, is found at 
Monte Catini, and in one or two 
other spots. At Monte Catini, the 
results have for the last 20 years 
proved as profitable as the deposit 
is remarkable. The copper ore is 
found in kidney-shaped lumps of 
sulphide of copper, mixed irregularly 
in a paste of soft, moist serpentinous 
material. The pockets containing 
the ore are sometimes large, but in 
the highest degree irregular. The 
lode is a kind of vein in the altered 
volcanic rock of Tuscany, called 
gabro rosso, a singular mass of an- 
gular and rounded material. Mag- 
nesia has played a very imjjortant 
part in all the changes and modifi- 
catioTis that have taken place in it. 
To the presence of magnesia is due, 
among other things, the beautiful 
green marble called serpentine, of 
which there are so many varieties 
in Tuscany ; and although the ser- 
pentine rock of the Lizard in Corn- 
wall is of very different appearance 
and hardness, the presence of the 
same mineral causes the peculiari- 
ties of both. 

Lead ore also is found in Tuscany, 
and deposits of some importance 
are worked in various places. The 
lead contains silver. Other metals 
(mercury among the number) are 
not wanting, and there seems a pro- 
spect of the metalliferous deposits 
of Italy soon becoming even more 
worked than in the days of ancient 
Rome, when its produce exceeded 

that of any country known at that 

But the working of the marble 
quarries must always be one of the 
most important departments of mi- 
neral industry in northern Italy. 
No one who has not visited Italy 
can imagine the vast development 
of this industry. In Genoa — the 
city of palaces — rightly called the 
superb, marble of the most beau- 
tiful kind and excellent quality, 
of endless variety in colour and 
texture, is almost the only mate- 
rial used for construction. Mar- 
ble staircases, marble balustrades, 
marble pediments, and marble 
floors are seen in every hotel, and 
even in every private house. The 
churches are marble inside and out, 
the public buildings are of the same 
material. In the streets, on the 
piers, and above all, in the Ccnnpo 
Santo or Cemetery, wherever we 
may go, the marble is displayed in 
abundance. The same, to some 
extent, is the case at Milan, at Pisa, 
and in most of the other cities 
remarkable for architectural beauty 
or interesting in history. The 
geologist in such a country, and 
under such circumstances, is sure 
to find abundant matter for inquiry. 
The marvellous abundance of marble 
is the result of change or metamor- 
phic action on various beds of lime- 
stone. These changes have origi- 
nated in the volcanic and other 
igneous causes traceable everywhei-e 
in this part of the world. Active 
volcanoes, in the south extinct, but 
perfect volcanic craters in the centre, 
and occasional earthquakes in the 
north of Italy, are or were the cause 
of the erui)tions of sulphurous and 
other gases, and of hot aqueous va- 
pours loaded with mineral matter. 
These are common almost every- 
where, and it is these that have con- 
verted the limestones into marble, 
the clays into shales, and the sands 
into quartzite. Whether we take the 
veined and colom-ed marbles where 
the impurities or foreign ingredients 
still remain, or the true white and 
statuai'y marble whei-e the foreign 
substances only occupy small vein- 


Notes and Correspondence. 


icles, or madri macchei, as they are 
hei-e called, the general history is 
the same, and metamorphosis is the 
only cause to which we can reason- 
ably refer. 

In other departments of natural 
history, Italy — especially in the 
northern and central provinces — is 
not only rich, but is well represented 
in the principal museums. It is 
chiefly, however, in the preparations 
illustrating the comparative anatomy 
and physiology, both of animals and 
vegetables, that the extraordinary 
accuracy, ingenuity, and patience of 
the Italians can be best appreciated. 
These are truly wonderful, and they 
are quite without rival in Europe. 
Highly magnified representations of 
the developement of a plant from the 
seed, a winged insect from the grub, 
or a chicken from the egg, are not 
unknown elsewhere, but at Florence 
and Pisa there is a profusion of 
illustrations truly marvellous. 

However we may consider the 
question, we shall find that the 
recent political changes in this part 
of the world are already bearing 
abundant fruit, in the liberation of 
the human intellect from the slavery 
that had so long weighed upon it. 
To say that there are great diflfer- 
ences of opinion, and that many 
persons even regret the old regime, 
is only to say in another way that 
the country is free. Everyone may 
and does safely and loudly express 
his own view of the government, 
and aU proposed changes are freely 
discussed. It does not follow that 
the best measures are at once 
adopted, but this healthy and free 
discussion will certainly ensure the 
greatest ultimate good, while educa- 
tion and science in all depart- 
ments will not fail in securing 
their due share of attention when 
the excitement of politics has a 
little calmed down. The acuteness 
of ItaUan intellect, and the elegance 
epually characteristic of this people, 
have still a great part to perform in 
the history of science. 

D. T. Ansted, F.R.S. 

Dahomey : its People and Customs. 
WiiYiMii, Sept. 2, 180^. 
Here I am, on my return from Kana, 
where I was received by the King 
of Dahomey during the celebration 
of the " little customs ;" and 1 will 
now send you some information 
concerning this country. 

Whydah, or Ajudah, is the port 
of the kingdom, though about two 
miles distant from the coast. It 
has 8,000 or 10,000 inhabitants, 
governed by a " yanogan," who is, 
in his turn, ruled over by one of 
the princes of Dahomey, The in- 
habitants are robust, weU formed — 
I might almost say handsome — with 
the exception of the head, which 
wants intelligence : that superior 
mark which the Creator appears to 
have denied to the negro race. 
There is, however, a wide difference 
between the morals of this people 
and those further to the south. 
Nothing is to be seen here calcu- 
lated to shock the eyes of a civilized 
man, nor anything objectionable to 
his ordinary habits. Nay, I can 
say more ; there is positively in the 
Dahomeyans a sense of personal 
dignity. Unfortunately, one en- 
counters at every step traces of that 
Fetischism which arrests all pro- 
gress, and transforms a man natur- 
ally gentle into a brute beast. The 
principal deities worshipped by this 
people are — Lightning, or Fire of 
Heaven ; the Boa, or Python ; the 
Lion, the Tiger, and the Vampires. 

I visited the Temple of Serpents 
in this town, where thirty of these 
monstrous deities were asleep in 
various attitudes. Each day, at 
sunset, a priest brings them a cer- 
tain number of sheep, goats, fowls, 
&c., which are slaughtered in the 
temple, and then divided amongst 
the "gods." Subsequently, during 
the night, they spread themselves 
about the town, entering the houses 
in various quartei's in search of 
further offerings. It is forbidden, 
under penalty of death, to kill, 
wound, or even to strike one of 
these sacred serpents, or any other 
of the same species ; and only the 

VOL. I. 


Notes and Correspondence. 


priests possess the privilege of 
taking liold of them, for the purpose 
of reinstating them in the temple 
should they be found elsewhere. 

When a house is struck by light- 
ning, the master is obliged to pay 
a heavy tribute to the priests of the 
" Fire of Heaven ; " for such an event 
is always regarded as the denun- 
ciation of a great culprit. Should 
a man be struck by lightning, his 
body is cut in pieces, and sold by 
the priests to the populace, who 
devour this roasted flesh ! The 
dwelling of the dead man is then 
pillaged and razed to the ground ; 
and the Fetisch worshippers im- 
molate victims on its site, in order 
to appease the anger of the " Fire 
of Heaven." 

The Vampires may be found on 
trees in the vicinity of the Temple 
of Serpents ; there they are collected 
by millions, and after sunset they 
disperse through the gardens and 
over the surrounding country. 

On leaving Whydah for the inte- 
rior, the traveller at once observes 
that the land rises gradually through 
a succession of upheaved plateaux 
or downs, which run parallel to the 
sea from east to west, the surface 
soil being to a great extent inter- 
mixed with small rolled flints. 

The utmost elevation which I 
found between Whydah and Kana 
was 500 English feet, and that was 
at a village called Havy (? Havee), 
about halfway between the two 
towns. Although Kana is lower 
than this point, it is quite apparent 
that further towards the north the 
land again rises to such a degree, 
that the capital, Abomey, situated 
ten miles north-east of Kana, must 
be elevated to about the same 
height as Havy. From the infor- 
mation that I have obtained in 
various quarters concerning the in- 
terior, there must be a range of 
mountains about three days' journey 
north of Abomey. However, this 
is a question on which I hope 
shortly to have ocular evidence. 

The King received me cordially; 
but, in order to reach the palace, 
I had to pass several scaffolds, bear- 
ing the cori^ses of victims who had 
been immolated on the previous 
evening. Some were suspended 
by the feet, others were upright. 
During twenty days these horrible 
spectacles were renewed, with a few 
decapitations in the interval. 

Consul Burton was more fortunate 
than I, for he only arrived at Kana 
two or three days before the King 
departed for the war, and after the 
conclusion of the sacrifices. It is 
a difficult matter to predict what 
Europe may gain from this king and 
his advisers. I believe, however, 
that if the abolition of the slave- 
trade be conceded (the very seat 
and centre of which is at this place 
— Whydah), there is a happier fu- 
ture in store for this land. 

It is with the view to obtain this 
concession that I am on the eve of 
my departure with your brave Com- 
modore Willmot, and we shall soon 
have a definite reply. If it be 
favourable, my journey of explora- 
tion will be suspended ; otherwise, 
I shall at once proceed northward. 
The concession of the abolition of 
the slave-trade in the kingdom of 
Dahomey is the more to be desired, 
inasmuch as it would put a stop 
to the depopulation of a country of 
undoubted fertility and natural 
wealth, and which is eminently 
adapted for the cultivation of 

If the King grants the abolition, 
he would be all the more ready to 
encourage the growth of that staple, 
in order to give employment to his 
people, who would then no longer 
be compelled to engage in war for 
the purpose of making prisoners, to 
be sold as slaves. 

This is a succinct account of my 
hasty impressions of Dahomey ; 
receive it as such as I am able to 

Jules Geraud. 

1864.] ( 211 ) 


Ix affords us great j)leasure to give publicity to the names of those 
Students who succeeded in obtaining Gold Medals in Science at the 
Examination held by the above Department of the State last May in 
Loudon and the provinces. 

Group I. Geometry, Mechanical Drawing, and Building Construction. 

Student's Name. 

Rowden, William T, 

Age. 'Schooror Residence. 

23 Trade School, Bristol. 


Science Teacher. 

Name of Teacher. 


Group. II. Tlieoretical and Applied Mechanics. 
No Gold Medal awarded. 

Group III. Experimental Physics. 

DoHERTT, Joshua I 26 1 180, Agnes-street, I National Teacher. I Eardley, F. 


Group IY, Chemistry Inorganic and Organic 
GooGAN, Richard 


North Main-street, 

South Main-street, 


Geologist. I Hofmann, Dr., and 

Cowling, J. 

Geologist. I Hofmann, iJr., and 

I Dowling, J. 

Note. — Mr. O'SuUivan was very nearly equal to Mr. Googan, and having 
taken the Silver Medal last year he could not receive it again. He has therefore, 
uuder the exceptional circumstances, been awarded a Special Prize of Books of 
the value of '61. 

Group V. Geology and Mineralogy, 
No Gold Medal awarded. 

Group VI. Animal Physiology and Zoology. 

Wilson, | 25 [ 12, Stanley-street, I Student of Science. I Self-taught. 

1 I Pimlico, London. | | 

Group YII. Vegetable Physiology and Systematic Botany. 

Wilson, George I 25 I 12, Stanley-street, I Student ot Science. I Self-taught. 

I I Pimlico, Loudon, | | 

Group YIII. Min ing and Metallurgy. 
No Gold Medal awarded. 

The first-named of these Students (I\Ir. Eowden) received only a Certi- 
ficate, as he does not belong to the Classes entitled to receive Medals. The 
following is the Government Regulation concerning the Medals generally : 
— " The Queen's Medals which are oftered for competition throughout the 
United Kingdom at the General Examination of Science Schools and 
Classes held each year in May consist of one Gold Medal for each group of 
subjects, and one Silver and two Bronze for each subject. AU persons 
wherever taught may compete, the only restriction being that the Medals 
cannot be taken by Middle Class Students who are more than seventeen 
years of age. Middle Class Students above seventeen years of age who 
would otherwise have taken the Medal receive an Honorary Certificate 

( 212 ) 

Boolts rcceibeU for Eebicijj, 

From Messrs. Blackwood 8f Sons : — 

Physical Geography (Introductory Text - Book of J. By David Page, 
F.R.S.E., F.G.S., &c. 193 pp. 1863. 

From Messrs. John Churchill <§• Sons : — 

Qualitative Chemcal Analysis (A System of Instniction in). By Dr. C. E. 
Fresenius, Professor of Chemistry, Wiesbaden. Edited by J. Lloyd 
Bullock, F.C.S. 6th English Edition. 360 pp. Colom-ed Plate of Spec- 
trum Analysis. 1863. 

Topics of the Day (Medical, Social, and Scientific). By James Ansley 
Hingeston, M.R.C.S., L.S.A. 400 pp. 1863. 

From Messrs. Longman Sc Co. : — 

Manual of the Metalloids. By James Apjohn, M.D., F.R.S., M.R.I.A., 
Professor of Chemistry in the University of DubUn. 600 pp. 1863. (One 
of Galbraith & Haughton's Scientific Manuals.) 

From Mr. Lovell Beeve :— 

Dictionary of Natitral History Terms with their Derivations : including 
the various Orders, Genera, and Species. By David H. McNicoll, M.D., 
M.R.C.P. 590 pp. 1863. 

From Mr. Van Voorst : — 

Flora of Marlborough, with notices of the Birds, and a sketch of the 
Geological Featm'es of the Neighbourhood, with a Mnp. 153 pp. 

Flora of Surrey ; or, a Catalogue of the Flowering Plants and Ferns found 
in the County, with the Localities of the Rarer, Species. From the 
ManuscriiJts of the late J. D. Salmon, F.L.S., and from other sources. 
Compiled for the Holmesdale Natural History Club, Reigate. By James 
Alexander Brewer. 391 pp. 

The First Principles of Natural Philosophy. By William Thynne Lynn, 
B.A. Lond., F.R.A.S., of the Royal Observatory, Greenwich. 100 pp. 

From the Editor : — 

The Ibis. A Magazine of General Ornithology. Edited by P. L. Sclater, 
M.A., Ph.D., F.R.S., Sec. Z.S., F.L.S., &c., &c. Vol. IV. 1 862. 392 pp. , 
with 13 coloured Lithographs. (N. Triibner & Co.) 

From the Authors : — ■ 

Ophthalmoscopic Surgery (A Manual of), being a Practical Treatise on the 
Use of the Ophthalmoscope, &c. By Jabez Hogg, F.L.S , &c., &c. 3rd 
edition. Numerous Chromo-lithographs. 296 pp. (J. Churchill & Sons.) 

Heat in its Relations to Water and Steam. By Charles Wye Williams, 
A.I.C.E. 2nd edition. 220 pp. (Longman & Co.) 1861. 

Observational Astronomy, and Guide to the Use of the Telescope. By a 
Clergyman. Edited by J. T. Slugg. 96 pp. (Simpkni & Co.) 1862." 

The Stars and the Telescope. By J. T. Slugg. (Simpkin & Co.) 1862. 


Qua-rtei-Ly Joxcrnal o£ Science. N'' 2 

J WoW dcir.i.liUi 

Jvi >^ ivi ivi .^\ 1 1 ci f 1 K M A I ) /\ L^ /\ i" j iJA H 

M *, N-UaTiliaU.Im-F 



APRIL, 1864. 



By P. L. ScLATEK, M.A., Ph.D., F.R.S., Secretary of the Zoological 
Society of London. 

Organic beings are not scattered broadcast over the earth's sui-face 
without regularity or arrangement, as the casual observer might sup- 
pose, nor are they distributed according to the variations of climate 
or of any other physical external agent, although the latter have, un- 
questionably, much influence in modifying their forms. But each 
species (or assemblage of similar individuals), whether of the animal 
or vegetable kingdom, is foimd to occupy a certain definite and con- 
tinuous geographical area on the earth. In like manner, each genus, 
or assemblage of species, each family, or assemblage of genera, and 
each order, or assemblage of families, may be said to be subject to 
similar laws, as regards its geographical distribution, — although, as 
might have been sujjposed, the areas occupied by the higher groups 
are usually larger, and in some cases co-extensive with the earth's 

It thus happens that the various parts of the world are charac- 
terized by possessing special groups of animals and vegetables, and 
that, as a general rule, such tracts of land as are most nearly con- 
tiguous have their Faimfe and Flora? most nearly resembling one 
another ; while, vice versa, those that are farthest asimder are inhabited 
by most diiferent forms of animal and vegetable life. When any 
exception to this rule occui's, and two adjacent lands possess dis- 
similar forms, or two regions far apart exliibit similar forms, it is the 
task of the student of geographical distribution to give some reason 
why this has come about, and so to make the " exception prove the 

In the present paper I propose to devote a short space to the 
examination of one of the best known and strangest of these anomalies 
VOL. I. 

214 Original Articles. [April, 

in geographical distribution — namely, that presented to us by the 
Fauna of the Island of Madagascar. Madagascar being immediately 
contiguous to the eastern coast of Afi'ica, and separated from it by a 
channel in one place only some 200 miles across, in which, moreover, 
there are several intermediate islands, while it is very far removed 
from India and America, ought, according to generally-received rules, 
to exhibit a Fauna of a purely African type. But this, as is well 
kno^Ti to naturalists, is not the case. The numerous Mammals of the 
orders Euminantia, Pachydermata, and Proboscidea, so characteristic 
of the ^Ethiopian Fauna, are entirely absent from Madagascar. The 
same is the case with the larger species of Carnivora, which are found 
throughout the African continent, but do not extend into Madagascar. 
Again, the highly-organized types of Quadrumana, which prevail in 
the forests of the mainland, are utterly wanting in the neighbouring 
island, their place being there occupied by several genera of the inferior 
family of Lemurs. In the like manner, I shall be able to show that 
similar irregularities prevail to a greater or lesser extent in every other 
part of the series of Mammals, and that, in short, the anomalies pre- 
sented to us by the forms of life prevalent in this island are so striking, 
that claims have been put forward in its favour to be considered as a 
distinct primary geographical region of the earth.* 

But let us take the Orders pf Mammalia as they are generally 
recognized, one by one, in order that we may examine more carefully 
the affinities of each genus of them included in the list of Madagascarian 
Mammals. To do this, it will be most convenient to refer to the cata- 
logue of the Vertebrates of Madagascar lately published by M. Fran9ois 
Pollen, in the ' Nederlandsch Tijdschrift voor de Dierkunde ; ' f this 
being the only general article bearing upon the subject that has yet 
appeared. M. Pollen's list is a compilation for his own use, as 
being about to visit Madagascar, of what has been recorded by previous 
authorities on the subject. Amongst such aiithorities, the most im- 
portant, as regards Mammals, is certainly an article by M. Victor 
Sganzin, in the third volume of the ' Memoirs of the Society of the 
Museum of Natural Plistory of Strasbm-g.' M. Sganzin was the com- 
mandant of the French settlement of Sainte-Marie, on the north-east 
coast of Madagascar, in 1831 and 1832, and obtained on that island 
and on the adjoining coast of Madagascar proofs of the existence of 
about a hundred Vertebrate animals, concerning which he gives us 
notes, without, however, in many cases, any precise determination of the 
species. Long before his time, it is true, De Flacourt and Sonnerat 

* The most natural primary divisions of the earth as regards Zoologj' are, as 
has been shown in tlie ' Jonrnal of Proceedings of the Linnean Society' (Zoology), 
ii. p. 130, and elsewhere, (1) The Neotropical region, comprising Soutli America, 
Mexico, and the "West Indies; (2) Tlie Nearctic, including the rest of America; 
(3) The Palxarctic, conii)oscd of Europe, Africa north of the Saliara, and 
Northern Asia ; (4) T\\i' J'.'th/dji/an, which coutahis the rest of Africa, Arahia, 
and Madagascar; (5) Tlie Indian, consisting of Southern Asia and the western 
half of the Malay Archipelago; and (G) The Australian, which comprises the 
eastern portion of the Malay Archipelago, Australia, and the Pacific Islands. 

t 'Nederlandsch Tijdschrift voor de Dierkunde,' Amsterdam, 1863, vol.!. 
p. 277. 


SoLATER on the Mammals of Madagascar. 


had published narratives of their voyages to Madagascar, and the 
latter had made Itnown to science several of the most remarkable types 
of the island ;* biit neither of these explorers has furnished any general 
indications as to the character of its Mammalian Fauna. In 1833, 
three French natiu-alists — Bernier, Goudot, and Koiisscau — visited 
Madagascar, and it is to the labours of these energetic collectors on the 
eastern coast, and to those of Dr. W. Peters, of Berlin, on the western 
coast, that science is chiefly indebted for the progress that has lately 
been made towards the compilation of a list of the Mammals of this 
island, which, however, as far as our present knowledge extends, only 
embraces some 49 species — namely, Quadrumana 28, Carnivora 5, 
Chiroptera 5, Eodentia 1, Insectivora 9, Pachydermata 1. 

To begin then with the order Quadrumana, the most remarkable and 
most characteristic type of Madagascarian Mammals here presents itself 
at once at the head of the list. The Lemui-s are imiversally recog- 
nized among naturalists as forming a separate and distinct group of 
Quadrmnanous Mammals. And of the Lemurs nearly thirty different 
species, embracing eight generic forms, are found in Madagascar, 
whilst all Africa only contains some eleven or twelve species of these 
animals, and the Indian region not more than three. This will be 
better seen by the subjoined table, in which the distribution of the 
genera of the family of Lemurs and the approximate number of the 
known species of each genus are given — 

Table of the Distribution of the Lemuridce. 






1. Indris (2) f 

Indrisinse I 

2. Propithecns (1) 

3. Avaliis (1) 

4. Lemur (16) 

5. Hapalemur (2) 

6. Lepilemur (1) 

Lemurinae . 

8. Perodicticus (2) 

7. Chirogaleus (2) 

9. Nycticebus (2) 
10. Loris (1) 

GalaginsB ■ 

12. Galago (9) 

11. Microcebus (2) 


13. Tarsius(l) 

Moreover, as the whole number of Mammals at present known to 
exist in Madagascar does not amoimt to fifty, we have this very remark- 

* De Flacourt's ' Histoire de la Grande lie de Madagascar,' and Sonnerat's 
' Voyage aux Indes Orientales.' 

t N.B. — The numbers in figures placed after the generic names in the table 
give the (in some cases approximate) number of species of the genus. Until very 
recently but one species of Indris was known to science ; but M. Vinson has lately 
discovered, and described in the 'Annales dcs Sciences Naturelles' (Zool. xis. 
p. 253 ), a second from the forest of Alanamazoatrao — which lie has proposed to 
call Indris albus. 


216 Original Articles. [April, 

able fact — quite unparalleled, as far as is hitherto kno^vn, in any other 
Fauna — that nearly two-thirds of the whole number of known species 
of the Mammals of this island are members of one peculiar group of 

Again, when we come to examine the Lemuridce of Madagascar, and 
to compare them with their brethren in Africa and India, we find that 
they present us with no less than eight different generic types — all 
distinct from those found in the two latter countries. 

The genera Indris, Propithecus, and Avahis constitute a section of 
Lemuridce per se, easily distinguished from the rest of the family by 
having only five molar teeth on each side of the jaw, and only two (in- 
stead of four) inferior incisors. No genus with this form of dentition is 
found either in Africa or Asia. The true Lemurince are also most fully 
developed in Madagascar, the typical genus Lemur being numeroias in 
species, and, as is stated by travellers, likewise in individuals. In Africa 
this sub-family is represented by the abnormal form Perodicticus — a 
recently-discovered second species of which is likewise considered by 
Dr. Gray* as entitled to generic rank. In India two allied genera of 
Lemurin8e are found — Nycticehus and Loris — likewise difficult to con- 
nect satisfactorily with the more typical members of the group, but 
presenting many indications of alliance to Perodicticus. 

The third sub-family of the Lemuridse is essentialiy African — con- 
sisting of the genus Galago, with eight or nine sjjecies dispersed over 
various parts of that continent, while Microcebus, with two or three 
imperfectly-known species, takes its place in Madagascar. 

The next form we meet with as we descend the series of Madagascar 
Mammals, is the celebrated Aye-aye (Chiromys Madagascai-iensis), an 
animal so anomalous in its structure, that although it has been now 
conclusively proved that its nearest allies are amongst the Lemurs,"]" 
even the illustrious Cuvier referred it to the widely-distant order of 
Rodents. The Aye-aye is pronounced by Professor Owen to be more 
nearly allied to some of the African Galagos than to any other living 
form. It may be, however, remarked that the Tarsier of the Indian 
Archipelago {Tarsius spectrum) presents certain points in its structure 
which likewise show a remote affinity to this extraordinary type. 

The second order of Mammals — the Bats or Chiroptera, have, as 
far as oui* present knowledge goes, only five representatives in Ma- 
dagascar. Two of these belong to the Frugivorous family Pteropodidce 
— and curiously enough to the hidian, not to the African section of the 
group. One of them indeed (P. Edwardsii) is so clearly allied to the 
common Pt. medius of continental India, as to have been very con- 
stantly confounded with it. J 

The three known species o( insectivorous Bats of Madagascar 
(Bhinolophus Commersonii, Vespertilio Madagascariensis and Emhallonura 

* See Dr. Gray's ' Revision of tlie Species of Lemuriiin Animals.' Proc. 
Zool. Soc. 1863, p. 129. 

t See Prof. Owen's Memoir ' On the Aye-aye.' Trans. Zool. Soc. v. pt. 2 

X As to the real distinctness of tliese species, see Peters, ' Zool. Reise n. 
Mossambique,' vol. i. p. 22. 

1864.] SohXTEtt on the Mammals of Madagascar. 217 

Madagascariensis) supply us with no very precise indications as to their 
geographical affinities. 

In the next order of Mammals i\ie Insectivora, of which nine species 
are known to inhabit Madagascar, we again find a very peculiar group of 
types, consisting of the genera Centetes, Ericulus, and Echinogale. 
These little animals, though generally associated with the Hedge-hogs 
(Erinaceus), to which in their external appearance they present much 
resemblance, have been recently declared by Dr, Peters — who has 
devoted much attention to the Jnsectivora — to be most nearly allied to 
the American genus Solenodon ! * So to find their nearest affines we 
have to cross the whole (present) continent of Africa and the At- 
lantic Ocean to the West Indian Islands, where the only two known 
species of Solenodon occur. 

Besides the Centetince the Insectivora of Madagascar consist of two 
species of Shrew (Sorex) — a form widely distributed in the Old, and 
northern portion of the New World, and a singular little animal, at 
present very imperfectly known, which was described by M. Doyere 
in 1835 under the name of Eupleres Goudoti. The Eupleres Goudoti 
is stated to agi'ee in its dentition with the moles [Tulpa), to which 
genus also it would likewise seem to present some resemblance in its 
habits ; but its general external conformation is much more like that 
of a small vermiform Carnivore, and its describer considers it to con- 
stitute the type of a new family of Insectivora, leading oft' towards the 

The order Carnivora again presents us with thi-ee types peculiar to 
the island — Cryptoprocta, Galidia and Galidictis. These, however, all 
belong to the family Viverrince. — a group pecidiar to the Old World, and 
of which several allied genera inhabit the adjoining parts of Africa. It 
is not, therefore, necessary to look " across the Atlantic" for the 
nearest relatives to the Madagascarian Carnivora. Strangely enough, 
the nearly imiversally distributed types Felis and Canis seem utterly 
unrepresented in this Fauna. 

Of Eodents only one specie^ I believe, has yet been registered as 
found in Madagascar. This is a squirrel of the genus Sciurus — 
which, as far as it is known, exhibits African affinities. Eats and mice, 
indeed, there are in Madagascar, as in nearly every other habitable 
portion of the globe where man has penetrated, but these are of the 
well-known European sjDccies, and must be put into the same category 
as the cats, dogs, and oxen which have been introduced into and floiu-ish 
in the island. 

The important order of Ruminants, which is so gi'eatly developed on 
the opposite coast of Africa, ajjpear to be wholly wanting in the indi- 
genous Faima of Madagascar. While Antelopes of numerous species 
aboimd in every part, whether plain or forest, of the adjoining conti- 
nent, and the Gii'affe and Bufialo are likewise everywhere characteristic 
featm-es of the Ethiopian Mammal-faima, not one of those creatures is 
known to occur in Madagascar, and this fact alone woidd serve to 

* Cf. Peters, ' Ueber die Saiigctliier-gattung, Sulenodon.' Abb. Acad. 
Berlin, 1863. 

218 Original Articles. [April, 

mark out the wide diflference between these two creations as they stand 
at present. The same is nearly the case as regards the next order — that 
of Pachyderms. The Hippoiwtamus, so abundant on the opposite coast of 
Mozambique, is not found in Madagascar. Had Madagascar ever formed 
part of Africa this would hardly have been the case. The genus Equus, 
well represented in Southern Africa by the Zebras and Quaggas, the 
Hyrax and the Rhinoceros, is likewise wanting ; and of the Ai-tio- 
dactyles only a single species — namely, the South African Eiverhog 
(Potamochcerus Afncanus) — is stated to inhabit Madagascar. But 
although M. Sganzin has positively identified this species as a Mada- 
gascarian animal, I cannot but think it rather doubtful ; in the first 
place, because this is the only exception to the general rule of 
specific (and almost generic) difference between the Mammals of 
Madagascar and Africa ; and secondly, because Dr. Peters tells us he 
could obtain no indications of the existence of this Pig upon the oppo- 
site coast of Mozambique. However, until the contrary is proved, it is 
only fair to assume M. Sgauziu's statement to be correct, and to include 
this Riverhog in the list of Madagascarian Mammals. 

Having thus given a cursory view of some of the more salient 
features of the Mammal-creation of Madagascar let us see what deduc- 
tions we can gather from them as to its origin — taking, of course, for 
granted, the derivative hypothesis of the origin of sjiecies — at present, 
the only theoi-y by which the otherwise inexplicable facts of geographical 
distribution can be explained. Of course it would be more satis- 
factory in a case like the present to have before us a summary of 
the knowledge we possess concerning every part of the Fauna and Flora 
of Madagascar, but as space does not permit this, let us see what we 
can make out from the Mammals alone. 

The following deductions may, perhaps, be arrived at from what we 
have before us : — 

1. Madagascar has never been connected with Africa, as it at present 
exists. This would seem probable from the absence of certain all-per- 
vading J^]thiopian types in Madagascar, such as Antilope, Hippopotamus, 
Felis, &c. But, on the other hand, the presence of Lemurs in Africa 
renders it certain that Africa, as it at present exists, contains land that 
once formed part of Madagascar. 

2. Madagascar and the Mascarene Islands (which are universally 
acknowledged to belong to the same category) must have remained 
for a long epoch separated from every other part of the globe, in order 
to have acquired the many peculiarities now exhibited in theii- Mammal- 
faima — e.g. Lemur, CMromys, Eupleres, Centetes, &c. — to be elaborated 
by the gradual modification of pre-existiug forms. 

3. Some land-connection must have existed in former ages be- 
tween Madagascar and India, whereon the original stock, whence the 
present Lemuridfe of Africa, Madagascar, and India are descended, 

4. It must be likewise allowed that some sort of coimection must 
also have existed between Madagascar and land whicli now forms part 
of the New World — in order to permit the derivation of the Cente- 

1864.] Herschel on the Solar Spots. 219 

tince from a common stock with tlie Solenodon,* and to account for 
the fact tliiit the LcmuricL'c, as a body, arc certainly more nearly allied 
to the weaker forms of American monkeys than to any of the Simiidaj 
of the Old World. 

To conclude, therefore, gi'anted the hyi^othesis of the derivative 
origin of species, the anomalies of the Mammal-fauna of Madagascar 
can best be explained by supposing that, anterior to the existence of 
Africa in its present shape, a large continent occupied parts of the 
Atlantic and Indian Ocean stretching out towards (what is now) America 
on the west, and to India and its islands on the east ; that this con- 
tinent was broken up into islands, of which some became amalgamated 
with the present continent of Africa, and some possibly with what is 
now Asia — and that in Madagascar and the Mascarene Islands we have 
existing relics of this great continent, for which as the original focus of 
the " Stirps Lemurum," I should propose the name Lemuria ! 

Explanation of the Plate. 

The accompanying sketch by Mr. Wolf will serve to illustrate the more 
remarkable types of the Mammal-kind of Madagascar. On the summit of the 
trees are Lemurs of different species {Lemur leucomystax, L. varius, L. catta, and 
L. xantliomystax). In the centre is the Aye-aye ; on the ground to the right is 
one of the remarkable Carnivores of the island {Galidictls vittata) staring at 
it ; on tlie left is the little Echinogale telfairi, cudeavoming to make its escape 
from such an extraordinary assemblage. In the background may be seen the 
celebrated Traveller' s-teee (Urania sjieciosa), and other marked forms of Mada- 
gascarian vegetation. 

By Sir John F. W. Herschel, Bart., K.H., D.C.L., F.E.S. 

The physical constitution of the sun, and the nature of the som-ce 
from which its expenditm'e of light and heat is supplied, must be 
regarded as by far the most important astronomical problem which 
remains unresolved, connected as it is not only with the maintenance 
of all animated existence, but as a matter of speculative interest with 
every branch of physical science ; since there is not one which has 
not to be laid under contribution in support or confutation of the 
various theories which have been, and will probably be henceforward, 
proposed to account for it. Apart from the knowledge of the dimen- 
sions and mean density of the sim which we derive from the great 
fact of planetary Astronomy, from its presumed connection with the 
Zodiacal light, and from the appendages to its disc, which become 
visible in total eclipses, and which demonstrate the existence of a 
solar atmosphere extending to a vast distance beyond the general 

* This single case, it must be reasonably allowed, would be hardly sufficient 
for the foundation of so startling a supposition ; but the presence in Madagascar 
of American forms of Seri^ents {Xiphosoma, Ueterodon, Philodryas, and Lepto- 
deira), of Iguanoid Lizards, and even of American Insects, necessitates some such 

220 Original Articles. [April, 

luminous surface or photosphere, we have little or nothing to guide us 
in this inquiry but the telescopic examination of its surface, which 
reveals to us, besides a general textiu-e of a very peculiar kind, the 
existence of dark spots, temporary in their diu-ation, holding no fixed 
position with respect to its poles and equator, and presenting, in other 
respects, no analogy to those appearances on the planets which indicate 
the existence of local peculiarities on their solid globes, or of con- 
ditions in their atmosphere as to clouds and clear sky which obtain 
in our own. These spots, ever since their complete and recognized 
discovery as such by Fabricius, Galileo, and Scheiner, in 1611 (for 
though occasionally seen before the invention of the telescope, they 
had hitherto been taken for Mercury or Venus in inferior conjunction), 
have always been examined with gi-eat though desultory interest : and 
it is only since the year 1843, when Schwabe announced his important 
discovery of the periodicity of their occurrence, that the desirableness 
of keeping up an unbroken record, a complete diary, in fact, of the 
appearances presented by the solar disc, supplying by observations in 
different places the lacunae left by cloudy weather in any one, has been 

Dui'ing the years antecedent to this epoch, however, a vast amount 
of interesting information had been gathered as to their dimensions 
and forms, their penumbrce and umhrce (or, as they were sometimes 
called, nuclei,) the faculce or veins of brighter light which accompany 
and STUTound them, or which exist detached and remote from spots ; 
their law of distribution over the surface ; their generation, dm'ation, 
and extinction ; their appearances, disappearances, and reappearances, 
as carried round with the globe of the sim by its rotation on its axis, 
&c : all particulars very necessary to be borne in mind in reference 
to their physical explanation, as well as to what may be called their 
descriptive history, and of which a brief resume may not be thought 
irrelevant as introductory to the more especial subject of this notice, 
which is intended to draw attention to the conclusions which may be 
deduced from certain recent observations of their movements in longi- 
tude and latitude in reference to the equator of the sun's globe. 

But, first, we have a few words to say on the conditions requisite 
for viewing the sim with effect, and for delineating or photographing 
its spots, which will not be thought out of place by many of that 
numerous class of observers who, with telescopes or other apparatus 
competent to do good service, are without much experience in this 
special line of observation. A very convenient mode of viewing them 
is by projecting the image of the sun in a darkened room, on a white 
screen. This, in its rudest form, was the method followed by Kepler, 
who used only a small hole in a shutter, without a lens, and was thus 
enabled to see a spot on November 29, 1606, and another on May 18, 
1607 (o. 8.), which he also took for Merciu'y (then, however, not in 
transit, and not even in inferior conjunction). If a lens be used to 
bring the rays to a focus, the image, of com-se, is much improved. 
Still more if it be achromatic : and if in place of a single lens a good 
telescope of moderate focal length be used, and the eye-piece drawn 
put somewhat beyond the focus for parallel rays, an image of a high 

1864.] Heuscuel on the Sular Spols. 221 

degree of perfcctiou is i^rocurcd, which may be irnpreseed plioto- 
graphically or tlcliucated luunuully. The foriricr is tlie mode practised 
at the Kew Observatory by Mr. De La Rue, and we believe by most other 
helio-pliotographers : tlie latter is midcrstood to be the origin of thcjse 
exquisite drawings laid before the lioyal Astronomical Society by 
Mr. Howlitt. One improvement only seems yet wanting to render 
either of these modes of procedure as satisfactory as actual vision 
through the telescope — viz. in the place of the ordinary telescopic 
eye-piece to substitute an achromatic and aplanatie object-glass of 
sho7-t focus and sufficiently large apertm-e, having the radii of the 
siu'faces of its two lenses calculated on the principles laid down in my 
paper ('Phil. Trans.,' 1821) for the construction of such an object- 
glass. The radii so calculated afford a lens, aplanatie not merely for 
parallel rays, but for all distances of the radiant point, so that when 
inverted, or placed with its flint lens towards the light, and used as a 
microscope, it produces neitlier colour nor spherical aberration, and is 
thus excellently fitted for projecting a magnified image, perfect not 
only as to the form, but as to the colour, of the spots, and on a scale of 
any desired enlargement, by a mere change of focus and corresponding 
alteration of the screen's distance. 

When the telescope is used as a telescope, the great brightness and 
intense heat of the sun requii'e to be subdued, to make observation 
possible. It is a common mistake to suppose that this can be done by 
merely contracting the apertui'e of the object-glass by a cii'cular dia- 
phragm placed before it. In practice this is fatal to distinct vision. 
Cceteris paribus, in telescopic vision, the sharpness of definition is in the 
direct ratio of the angle (within moderate limits) which the object-glass 
subtends at its focus. Any attempt to evade this law by stopping out 
the light by concentric annnli will be fomid to issue in worse confusion. 
To use the full ajjertiu-e of the telescope is of paramoimt necessity either 
in viewing the sun or j)lanets. If the extinction of the light is effected 
by coloiu'ed glasses, the best combinations I have yet foimd are : 1st, 
that of two plane glasses of a shade between brown and violet, with one 
of a grass-green hue interposed : or 2nd, of two gi-eeu glasses, with a 
blue one coloured by cobalt between them. These allow scarcelj^ any 
rays of the spectrmn to pass but the yellow and less refrangible green ; 
and they cut oft" almost all the heat. The perfection of vision is at- 
tained by using only the extreme red rays ; but glasses which transmit 
these cannot be used on accoimt of the heat they allow to pass. What- 
ever combination of glasses be used, they are, however, apt to crack and 
fly to pieces through the heat which they do intercept. Hence the ne- 
cessity of either limiting the field of view by a metal screen with a 
small hole in the focus of the object-glass, as recommended for trial 
by Wilson, in 1774, and as practised with excellent effect by Mr. 
Dawes ; or of some construction of the telescope itself, which, in the 
act of forming the image, shall suppress a very large percentage of 
the w'hole incident light, without preference of coloiu". Such is the 
object of the " Helioscope " described in my " Cape Observations," * 

* (1847), page 436. 

222 Original Articles. [April, 

whicli utilizes for tlie formation of the image only about one 900th part 
of the incident rays, and if a greater diminution be desired, it may be 
obtained by a polarizing eye-jjiece. I have reason to believe that this 
construction will ere long receive a full and satisfactory trial at the 
hands of one of otu* most distinguished solar observers and practical 
mechanists. In default of a glass-reflecting sj^eculum such as this con- 
struction requires, and of the j)rism recommended for a second reflexion, 
I have used (vide locum citatum) a plane glass, roughened at the back, 
interposed obliquely, so as to intercept the converging rays before form- 
ing the first image, and reflect them through the eye-piece of a New- 
tonian telescope with great advantage. Mr. Hodgson* has recommended, 
and used successfully, a similar contrivance, with a refracting one. 

Spots on the sun have frequently been seen with the naked eye, by 
taking advantage of its proximity to the horizon, or of the intervention 
of light clouds. Instances of the kind are recorded by the annalists 
before the invention of telescopes — in a.d. 807 and 1160 ; and since 
by Galileo himself, by D'Arquier (April 15, 1764 ; January 30, 1767 ; 
June 6, 1763), by Sir WiUiam Herschel (April 17, 1779, September 2, 
1792), &c. Only the bare existence of a spot, however, can be so dis- 
cerned. No details of coui'se can be distinguished. When viewed with 
telescoj)es, the spots are seen to consist of two very broadly distin- 
guished shades of darkness : that of the interior and smaller portions, 
or umbrce, being so dark as to be called in common parlance black 
(considerably less so, however, than the body of Mercury or Venus 
seen in transit, or the moon dming a solar eclipse) ; the exterior and 
larger (which usually, but not always, completely siu-rounds the umbra) 
of what would be termed in painting a half-shade, and therefore called 
the penumbra. Occasionally, but rarely in large spots, this is alto- 
gether absent. But whenever it exists the line of demarcation between 
the shades is sharp and unequivocal. So, at least, I have invariably 
found it, and whenever a gradation of tint from one to the other has 
been thought to have been perceived by other observers, I am disposed 
to attribute it to the optical mixture of the images of the ragged edges 
of the penumbra with the black ground on which they are j)rojected on 
the retina arising from imperfect definition. The point is of extreme 
importance in the physical theory of the spots. So marked a distinc- 
tion is altogether adverse to the idea of a luminous gas or fluid, inde- 
finitely miscible with, or soluble in, a non-luminous transparent atmo- 
sphere ; while it agrees with that of an aggregation of the luminous 
matter in masses of some considerable size, and some certain degree of 
consistency, suspended or floating at a level determined by their sjjecijic 
gravity in a non-luminous fluid ; be it gas, vapom-, liquid, or that in- 
termediate state of gradual transition from liquid to vapour, which the 
experiments of Cagniard de la Tour have placed visibly before us ; and 
which, when loe consider the high temperature throughout the solar atmo- 
sphere, and the enormous pressure at the surface of its solid globe (if it 
have any such) we cannot but believe to be realized on the grandest scale 
in solar physics. And this is strongly corroborated by a certain streaky 

* Eoyal Astronomical Society's Monthly Notices, Dec. 8, 1854. 

1864.] Herbchel o« the Sular Spots. 223 

or fiuTowcd appearance in the penumbra), directed always radially to or 
from tlie centre of the umbra, as if rifted, and allowing the black ground 
on which they are seen projected to ajjpear thx-ough the chinks (see 
Fig. 3) : an ai)pcarance likened in certain cases by Mr. Dawes to " bits 
of straw," and by Mr. Nasmyth asserted to be distinctly referable to 
certain fusiform, lanceolate, or " willow-leafed " objects of deiinite size 
and shaije, superposed in general like scales, covering one another par- 
tially (see Fig. 5), but in the penumbrse, radially arranged, of which he 
conceives the whole hmiinous surface of the sim to consist.* It is not 
meant to assert that cither the penmnbras or umbras are devoid of all 
gradation of light. Both have darker and lighter shades, but 
(especially as regards the mnbrse) within far narrower limits of varia- 
tion. Within the latter, indeed, which, up to a recent period, most ob- 
servers, after Sir William Herschel, had agreed to regard as openings 
through which the dark body of the solar globe could be seen, Mr. 
Dawes, by the application of his diaphragm eye-piece already mentioned, 
has disclosed the existence of a third, and still deeper definite shade of 
darkness, constituting, as it were, a nucleus, or imibra of the second 
order (see Fig. 3), to which we propose henceforward to restrict the name 
of " nucleus." Between the penumbra, too, and the general brightness 
of the photosphere, a suddenness of transition exists, less marked, in- 
deed, than that between it and the nucleus, and less rigidly preserved, 
but yet on the whole exceedingly striking. And the whole series of 
phenomena strongly suggests the notion of three envelopes or veils 
between the exterior transparent atmosphere and the sim itself, the 
two outer being luminous, the inner probably only seen by reflected 
light ; — each capable of being partially removed, either by some emana- 
tion or upsiu-ging movement from below, or denudation from above, 
leaving a central opening, over which, when the denuding cause has 
ceased its action, the luminous strata tend to return, and spread them- 
selves equally. Even in such central oi)ening, however, the darkness 
is probably only relative, and, could the sm-rounding glare be com- 
pletely extinguished, the light of the central sj)ace would probably 
equal or exceed that of the brighter incandescence of oiu- fiu'naces. It 
is inconceivable indeed, that the actual surface of the solar globe (if 
there he any such definite surface), siu'roimded as it is by an enceinte of 
such a temperature as that of the photosphere, shoxdd be otherwise 
than in a state of the most vivid incandescence : and that it should 
appear no brighter than it does is not the least inexplicable featui-e of 
solar physics. Can it be that the interposition of mixed metallic 
vapours, each specifically opaque to definite rays of the spectriun be- 
tween the body and the penimibral envelope may by theii- joint absorp- 
tion, cut off nearly the whole of the light of the former ? Ignited, 
transparent, and colourless liquids or gases, it should be observed, 
give ofi" no light from their interior. 

The forms of the spots are extremely irregular ; of the penumbrje 

* Other observers, as I have recently been informed, consider Mr. Nasmyth's 
"willow-leaf" figures as too slender and pointed, and liken the forms ratlier to 
that of rice-grains. 

224 Original Articles. L^P^^' 

indeed excessively so. As there occur umbrse without penumbrje, so 
penumbrae occui" without umbrae, but such are usually only branches or 
outlying portions of groups, or the remains of a spot in the act of 
obliteration when the umbra has disappeared. In the great majority 
of cases many umbrae are sui-rounded and connected into a group by a 
common penumbra. This indeed is almost always the case with large 
spots. The umbrae, when large, affect more compact and rounded forms 
than the penumbrae, and the interior nuclei of Mr. Dawes still more so. 
On the whole there is a certain tendency to the bizarre in all the forms, 
which though indescribable in words is highly characteristic. One of 
Mr. Howlitt's drawings offers a strange approximation to the complete 
form of a human skeleton. A form not uncommon, especially towards 
the subsidence of a period of solar activity, is that of a tadpole with a 
large irregular head consisting of a penumbra and several umbrae, and 
a cui-ved penumbral tail dotted with smaller ones (see Figs. 4, 8). This 
form of spot has been noticed by some observers, among others by 
Picard in 1671, as recalling the outline of a scorpion (Fig. 6). The 
larger umbrae are often crossed (Fig. 1), or nearly crossed (Fig. 2), by 
narrow bridges of light, rarely penumbral, most usually of the full 
brilliancy of the photosphere, or even siu-passing it. In many cases 
they are iri'egtdarly roimded on three sides, and sharply cut as if 
snipped by scissors on the fourth, and to such sharp edges there is 
often no penumbral border. Lastly, spots are much more commonly 
connected in groups than quite insulated, and very frequently affect linear 
sequences, oblique to the parallel of solar latitude in wliich they occur ; 
the line of direction being towards a point in the sun's equator preceding 
the situation of the sj)ot in longitude (see Fig. 7). 

Large spots, or groups, are almost always attended by neighbom-ing 
faculce, which are streaks, or vein-like appearances, more or less crooked 
and branching, of brighter light than the general i^hotosphere. They 
are much more conspicuous, however, near the borders of the visible 
disc than towards its centre, a fact strongly indicative of their eleva- 
tion, as ridges or heaps of the liuninous matter, which so rising above 
the denser regions of the circumfused atmosi)here, have their light 
proportionally less enfeebled by its absorption. On the other hand they 
are never traced fairly up to the actual edge of the disc — where the 
absorption of the solar atmosphere is so great as to extinguish (according 
to Chacornac) nearly half the light — a proof that their elevation is far 
from commensurate with the extent of that atmosphere, and that they are 
not identical with the " red flames " seen on the limb of the sim in total 
eclipses. Indeed the latter appear indiscriminately round every portion 
of the disc, whereas the faculfe are never seen in the sun's polar regions. 
Neither is the connection of the spots with faculae one of reciprocity, 
for the latter are often seen where no spots exist. 

When spots on the sun's surface are viewed from day to day, they 
are seen to undergo gi-eat changes in form, size, and relative situation 
inter se, as well as to be carried round by a common movement ; 
evidently due to the sim's rotation on its axis in the same direction, 
and nearly in the same plane as tliat of the planetary movements ; and 

Quarterly, Journal ,o£ Science. l'?2 




% . 






V - " ..- 






c. '.V 


JVA-Hei-soKel is,- HajaKwt iinpV .KclwiaM WilBams Sc 


1 864.] Herbchkl on (he Sular Spots. 225 

from this latter movemout, by tracing tliu apparent paths of individual 
spots across the disc, tlie time of that rotation was early concluded, 
approximately by Galileo himself, and with more exactness by the uso 
of micrometric mcasiires by his successors — as well as the position of 
its axis in s^iace, or, which comes to the same thing, the inclination of 
its equator to the ecliptic and the longitude of its ascending and 
descending nodes. As regards these latter particulars, the results 
arrived at by various observers and computists, especially the more 
modern ones (Lalande, Fixlmillner, Bohm, Laugier, and Carrington), 
are in as good accordance as could be expected, and may be stated at 
7° 15' for the inclination of the axis, and 73" 40' for the longitude of 
the ascending node for 1850 ; so that the north pole of the sun's axis 
points nearly to the star tt Draconis, and the south to a Plutei. As 
regards the time of rotation, however, the disagreement is more con- 
siderable, for a reason which will presently appear. 

Few spots, and those only very large ones or groups of such, are 
permanent enough to be traced thi'ough more than one or two succes- 
sive revolutions of the sun. Instances of three or four returns are 
extremely rare. Schwabe, however, in 1840, saw the same spot eight 
times in the middle of its course over the disc, having made seven full 
revolutions between May 11 and November 16. Single spots, or 
small gi'oups, undergo such changes in a few days as to be hardly 
recognizable, and many originate and die out during a single transit. 
The origin of a spot when it can be observed, is usually traceable to 
some of those minute pores, or dots, which stipple the sun's surface, and 
which begin to increase, to assume an umhral blackness, and acquire a 
visible and at first very ii-regular and changeable shaj)e. It is not 
till it has attained some measurable size that a penumbra begins to be 
formed, a circimistance strongly favoui'ing the origination of the spot in 
a distiu'bance from below, upward ; — vice versa, as the spots decay, they 
become bridged across, the umbrse divide, diminish in size, and close up, 
leaving the penumbrfe, which by degrees also contract and disappear. 
The evanescence of a spot is usually more gradual than its formation. 
According to Professor Peters and Mr. Carrington, neighbouring 
groups of spots show a tendency to recede fi'om one another. 

The changes midergone in a few houi's by large spots, or among 
groups, are such as to alter visibly their shapes and relative situations, 
and from day to day to transform them entirely. Professor Wolf 
observed one on March 10, 18G1, which in the short interval of 
Ih. 17m. underwent, not merely visible but enormous changes, altering 
its whole aspect. And when it is remembered that a single second on 
the sun's sm'face (seen from the earth) corresponds to 46.- miles linear 
measui-e, and a square second (almost the minimum msihile) to upwards 
of 20,000 square miles, we need not to be told that such changes imply 
movements of a rapidity to which our fiercest hiu-ricanes ofter no ap- 
proach ; so that the term " viscous," which has been applied by some to 
the fliud in which the photosphere floats, is in the last degree inap- 
propriate. Mr. Dawes and Mr. Birt have observed the umbrfe of spots 
in some cases to rotate as it were slowly on their centres. 

226 Original Articles. [ApriL 

The earliest observers of the solar spots were led to notice the fact 
of their total absence in the circumpolar regions of the sun's surface, 
and we find it already remarked by Scheiner that their appearance is 
confined to a zone extending to 30° or 35° in latitude on either side of 
his equator. All subsequent observation has confirmed this. Only 
one fully-authenticated observation (by M. Peters, in 1846) is ad- 
duced of a sjjot in so high a North latitude as 50°, and a double one 
has been observed by Mr. Carrington in 44° S. The equator itself is, 
however, rarely visited by them, and this paucity usually extends over 
an equatorial zone, from 8° N. to 8° S. latitude. From these limits 
to 20° latitude on either side extends the region of their most frequent 
occurrence. Moreover it is no uncommon thing in very spotty states 
of the sun to observe some one parallel of latitude dotted out as it 
were on the disc by a more or less continuous line of sj)ots extending 
across or nearly across the whole disc, and that occasionally in both 
hemispheres. (See Fig. 7.) 

No one meridian of the sun, however, is found to be especially 
abundant in them, nor has observation yet pointed out any particular 
locality on that globe, at or near which a spot more frequently breaks 
out than at any other on the same parallel, a circmnstance conclusive 
against their owing their origin to volcanic eruptions or any simply 
local causes. 

The sun is not equally spotted at all times. Many months and 
sometimes whole years have elapsed without the notice of a spot. In 
others, for months, nay years together, they have been remarkable for 
number and magnitude. It seems to have been a very general belief up 
to the epoch of Professor Schwabe's observations already mentioned, that 
this variety was purely casual, and altogether irregidar. But the evidence 
obtained by M. Schwabe, observing from 1826 to 1860, on an average 
300 days per annmn, dui'ing each of which the number of groups and 
single spots was registered, clearly estabKshed a periodicity. Thus, in 
1833, 1843, 1856, very few groiips were seen, and on nearly half the 
days of observation the sun was spotless ; while in 1828, 1837, 1848, 
1859, and 1860, the number of groups was extraordinary, and not one 
spotless day occui-red ; while the intermediate years exhibited a 
regular alternate increase and decrease. A period from ten to twelve 
years in dui'ation was thus indicated. It became therefore exceedingly 
interesting to ascertain, by the collection and comparison of all the ob- 
servations recorded of the sun's state since the first discovery of the 
spots, whether this alteration of periods of excitement and quiescence 
would be corroborated or not. This task (one of no slight labour) has 
been accomplished with extraordinary devotion and perseverance by 
Dr. Rudolf Wolf, Professor of Astronomy at Zurich, who in a series of 
Essays communicated to and published by the Zurich Society of Na- 
tural Philosophy, has collected from every available soui'ce the whole 
literature of the subject, and subjected the totality of the recorded ob- 
servations to a most careful and searching scrutiny. In so doing he 
has been enabled to assign, on what appears to us sufficient evidence in 
general, and in most cases decisive, the following epochs of minima 


HERSOHEii on the Solar Spots. 


of solar activity (as evinced by tlic production of spots), with tlie inter- 
vals elajiscd between each, viz. : — 

^''°™^' ' Intervals. 





1723 • 


8-2? I 
11-0 1 
10-0 1 

8 5 


1810 5 




The mean interval is ll''-2, or, considering that the two first epochs 
are necessarily somewhat uncertain, very nearly 11'' ith, or nine 
complete periods in a century ; and the mean epoch 1799-24, which is 
so nearly 1800*0, that as a convenient date for memory the commence- 
ment of the terminal year of each centm-y may be taken as a starting 
point. The comparison of epochs of maximum activity leads to a 
similar conclusion as to the length of the average period ; but these 
epochs are less definitely marked, and subject to greater deviations from 
their average places than the minima which, themselves, as is evident 
from the above synopsis, are subject to pretty considerable irregu- 
larities. Generally speaking there appears a tendency in the maxima 
to anticipate the middle time between the consecutive minima, the 
interval 11*11 being divided into two imequal sub-intervals of 4''-77, 
and 6^*34, 

Professor Wolf estimates the solar activity on any day by adding 
together the number of individual spots counted on the disc and ten 
times the number of groups. This is to a certain extent arbitrary. 
But some rule must be adopted for calculation, and it would not be 
easy to propose one less open to objection. Taking the total so obtained 
for each day for the measure of that day's activity, and thence calcula- 
ting the mean yearly activity, and the mean dm-ing each period, he has 
arrived at some very striking and remarkable conclusions, which 
may be thus stated. 1st. If a series of equal distances be marked 
off in a line to represent years, and on the middle of each an ordinate 
erected representing the mean annual activity, theii* extremities be- 
ing joined by a curve ; this will, of coiu'se, exhibit a series of waves 
averaging 11*11 years in breadth. Now it is found that the smnmits 
of these waves (and also their depressions) are of very unequal heights, 
and that (regarding their summits only) the curve connecting these 
exhibits again a series of larger waves, occui^yiug, from summit to 
summit, a breadth of about 56 years, or (?) five times the length of the 
smaller period, the maximum value of its ordinate being nearly double 
of the minimmn. In other words, besides the shorter period of 11-11 

228 Original Articles. [April, 

years in which the solar activity fluctuates from nil, or nearly, so to a 
niaximmn and back again, it is subject to another and larger period of 
56 years (55-55 ?), during which the extent of the former fluctuation is 
nearly doubled. The maximum of this greater fluctuation may pro- 
visionally be j)laced about the years 1780 and 1836. 2nd. Another 
conclusion hardly less interesting is, that in adjacent or nearly adjacent 
11 -year periods of unequal length, a greater degree of activity diu-ing 
the shorter tends to compensate in the total number of spots produced, 
for a less energy in the longer. 

These results are in a high degree enigmatical, and up to the 
present time no clear account of them has been given. "Were the spots 
sufficiently large and numerous to produce any considerable defalcation 
of light they would place the sun at once in the class of variable stars, 
which present distinct and marked analogies in respect of theii- laws 
of periodicity and sub-periodicity, such as at all events point to a 
common explanation of the two phenomena. Meanwhile it must be 
noted that in the planetary revolutions we find no such periods as 11^ 
and 55i years, and although both Professors Wolf and Schmidt have 
bestowed some pains on the inquiry whether the application of equa- 
tions or terms depending on the heliocentric longitudes of the planets 
may not eliminate some portion of the observed irregularities in the 
recurrence of the minima of the 11 -year period, it does not yet appear 
that any dependable result of this kind has been arrived at. Indeed, 
the data have not sufficient precision, nor does the series of observations 
embrace a sufficient time to lead us to expect it. 

As regards the ntimber of spots in each year and in different 
months of the same year, however. Dr. Wolf (' Mittheilungen,' No. X.) 
seems to have satisfied himself from the examination of Schwabe's 
observations from 1826 to 1848 that sub-periods depending on the 
revolutions of the Earth and of Venus do really exist. Thus, he finds 
a perceptibly greater degree of apparent activity to prevail annually 

on the average of months of September January, than in the 

other months of each year — and again by projecting all the results in 
a continuous curve he finds in it a series of small imdulations suc- 
ceeding each other at an average interval of 7'65 months, or 0'637 
year. Now the periodic time of Venus (225 days) reduced to a fraction 
of the year is 0'616, a coincidence certainly near enough to warrant 
some considerable suspicion of a physical connection. 

Yet more enigmatical is the comiection which has been considered 
to subsist between the mean annual abundance of solar spots and the 
extent of mean annual fluctuation observable in the magnetic elements 
which determine the position of the needle. Dr. Lament, of Mmiich, 
it would appear, was the first who noticed a periodical increase and 
decrease in the annual amount of variation of the magnetic declina- 
tion — the period assigned by him being about ten years. In his 
' Eesultate der Mag. Obs. zu Miincluai,' published in 1846, he states 
the amount of the mean daily variation in declination for the eleven 
years from 1834 to 1845 inclusive, which exlubit an increase from 
8'-25 in 1834 to 12''90 in 1836, whence a gi-adual and steady decline to 
7'-41 in 1844. And from this (which as we now perceive falls in per- 

1864. 1 llEuscnEL on the Solar Spo* 229 

foctly with tho incvcaBC nnd decrease of tlio Bi)ots in that interval, but 
witliout reference to them) he drew tho conclusion above mentioned. A 
similar result was aimounccd in 1852 by General Salunc, and extended to 
all tlie magnetic elements — connecting tho jjeriodieity with that of the 
spots, but assuming a period of ten years in accordance with M. 
Scliwabe's first conclusion— and to this period of magnetic change 
General Sabine we beKevc is still disposed to adhere. Professor 
Wolf, liowover, who has instituted the same system of inquiry into all 
available observations of magnetic declination, finds this element at 
least (so far as dependahle observations exist) to vary in so perfect 
accordance with his law of solar activity that a table of its mean annual 
amounts as estimated in the manner above stated is convertible by a 
mere change of scale and the use of a multiplier constant for each 
magnetic observatory, into a table of mean decimal variations for the 
same years in each. It Avill be recollected, liowever, that the earlier 
data here are sparingly scattered, and it would be prematiu-e to assert 
the absolute generality of this conclusion in the face of that to which 
the Astronomer Eoyal has been led by his recent elaborate discus- 
sion of the Greenwich magnetic observations from 1841 to 1857, viz. : 
that from the rapid decrease of dimension in the projected curves for 
the several years from 1848 to 1857, their forms remaining the same 
he is led to believe that in this interval " some great cosmical change 
has come upon the earth affecting terrestrial magnetism.'" "We should 
not pass quite unnoticed, however, that, granting the correctness of 
the epoch of maximum (1836j of Dr. Wolf s longer period of 56 years, 
this precise interval of time would fall upon the most rapid downward 
sweep of his average ciu-ve of maxima during its progress from the 
maximum of 1836 to that of 1892. 

A connection between the periodicity of the spots and the recui-rence of 
great displays of aui-ora borealis has also been sui-mised, and was, indeed, 
suggested as a possibility by Mairan more than a centiuy ago. The 
recent researches of Professor Fritz, grounded on a diligent assemblage 
and collection of recorded auroras instituted by Dr. Wolf, the late 
Professor Olmsted, and others, have placed this connection in a very 
distinct light, and sho^vn not only that the 11 -year period of the spots 
has its parallel in the annual frequency of auroras, both in respect of 
munber and the epochs of minimmn, but also that the long period of 
66 years is represented in that phenomenon, and, in fact, agTees better 
in indicating epochs of extraordinary abundance and paucity than a 
longer period of 65 years proposed by Olmsted, without reference to 
the spots. To dilate on the steps of this inquiry would lead us beyond 
our limits, and we hasten to the consideration of another class of 
phenomena, to which observations of Mr. Carring-fon, from 1853 to 
1861, recently published with the liberal aid of a grant from the Eoyal 
Society, have given a very prominent degree of interest, as affording at 
length a glimpse — if not of the physical cause in which the spots 
originate, at least of the working of a mechanism tlu-ough which that 
cause may possibly produce its efloct. 

We have ali-eady noticed, that while the results obtained by 
different observers and computists as to the position of the sun's axis of 

VOL. I. B 

230 Oricjinal Articles. [April, 

rotation derived from the patlis of the spots across his disc agree ou 
the whole satisfactorily, no such good accordance is found between the 
times of rotation so deduced. Galileo concluded from his observations 
(of course rudely) a synodic period of 28 days ; Scheiner, in 1630, of 26 
or 27, corresponding to a sidereal period of 25^, or thereabouts ; 
Cassini, 25*59 ; Lalande, 25*42 ; Laugier, as a mean result, 25*34 ; 
Kysseus, 25*09 ; and Boehm, 25*32 ; the discordance between which is 
too great to be considered satisfactory. Observers, moreover, had 
noticed that, not only different spots gave different results, but that the 
same spot observed in several successive revolutions gave results greatly 
at variance with each other. Thus the observations of M. Laugier 
afforded periods varying from 24*88 to 26*23 days ; and Professor 
Fearnley of Christiania, from observations of a very remarkable spot 
in 1857, which presented itself three times on the disc, deduced a 
series of periods from its passages across and reappearances on the disc, 
of 25*46, 25*67, 25*83, 25*87, and 26*23 days, respectively and succes- 
sively. Such differences are far too great to have arisen from error of 
observation, and can only be attributed to proper motion of the spots 
themselves relative to the body of the sun, arising from their floating in 
the solar atmosphere, of which their relative change of heliographical 
situation suffices of itself to indicate the movement. This conclusion 
was di'awn by M. Peters, from an elaborate series of observations made 
in 1845-6, in which he first clearly pointed out that the period of 
rotation deduced from such observations is that of the sun's atmosphere, 
not of its globe, and is affected, for any particidar spot, by whatever 
atmospheric drift, permanent or temporary, may subsist in the region 
occupied by it. Thus a way was opened by assiduous observations of 
the spots to a knowledge of the existence and laws (if any) of the solar 
atmospheric currents. About the same time was put forth by the 
author of this notice, a sm'mise, from the law of distribution of the 
spots in two tropical belts, with an intermediate spotless equatorial 
zone, that their origin might perhaps be sought in regmlar solar winds, 
analogous in their essential featm-es to our trade-winds, and o^ving 
their origin to a different rate of emission of heat in the equatorial and 
polar regions, and a consequent difference of temperatui-e in the two 
regions.* On the occasion of the spot-minimiun of 1855-6, Mr. Car- 
rington, who from 1858 downwards had been assiduously and sys- 
tematically observing them, was led to make a very important remark 
as to the distribution of the spots in latitude. He found that, as the 
epoch of the minimum drew on, their average heliographical latitude 
decreased ; the higher latitudes beyond 20° N. and S. becoming 
deserted, while the equatorial zone became comparatively more and 
more frequented by them ; and this went on steadily till the epoch of 
the minimum was attained. After this a sudden and most decided 
change took place. The equator was deserted, and on the reappear- 
ance of the spots their average latitxides, N. and S., were found to 
exceed 20°, the intermediate zone being now as remarkable for their 
relative paucity as it was before for their relative abundance. On 

* ' Tlosiilts of Cape OIjsi rvations, 1847.' 

1804.] Hehscuiei. on the Solar S^jots. 231 

searching fonner records, Dr. Wolf aKcertained from the observations 
of Professor Bochm in ISSy-d-O-G, including the mininimn of 1833-4, 
that the same phenomenon had then also occurred, the average lati- 
tudes of the s2)ots in 1833 having been 9" 9', while in 1834, the year 
innncdiately subsequent to the minimmn, it had risen by a similar 
sudden si)ring to 25" 0', after wliicli (as was also the case in Mr. Car- 
rington's observations) it gradually declined to the normal state. 
Whether this be a general rule, remains to bo seen. If so, it cannot 
but stand in immediate and most important comiection with the 
periodicity itself, as well as with the physical process in which the 
spots originate. Meanwhile, however, an opportunity was thus aiforded 
of determining the sun's period of rotation by a groat many equatorial 
spots, as well as by those in high latitudes. The results have been 
computed and synoi)tically tabulated with consummate skill and dili- 
gence by Mr, Carriugtou, in the extensive and laborious work already 
cited, ami lead to the following general and highly-remarkable con- 
clusion — viz. that the period of rotation as deduced from spots in 
different latitudes increases with the latitude so far as 50° (beyond 
which no observations are attainable), or, in other words, that the 
equatorial regions of the photosphere revolve considerably faster than 
the polar. According to the law of dependence between the rotatory 
velocity and the corresponding latitude assigned by Mr, Carrington,* 
the ditierence amounts to no less than 5*89 days, the sidereal revolution 
at the equator being 30*86 days, and at the pole (supposing the same 
law carried on up to the pole) 24-97 days. At 50" hel, lat., the revo- 
lution would be completed in 28*36 days. 

Let us now consider what is imj)lied in the law so disclosed. This 
will depend much on the supposition we may make respecting the 
rotation of the interior globe, of which we are left in complete 
ignorance. As extreme hypotheses we may suppose its rotation to be 
performed in the least of the above-named times, or in the greatest ; 
or, as a mezzo termine, in the intermediate period last mentioned. 

I. On the fii'st hypothesis, the equator and the photosphere above 
it will be relatively at rest, and we shall have in analogy to the state 
of things prevalent here on earth, a region of equatorial cabn, not 
much distm-bed for some small number of degrees, &c., to the North 
or South. As the latitude increases, the photosphere, revolving in 
continiially longer and longer time, wdll lag more and more behind the 
surface of the globe for the time beneath, the residt being of course 
what we should call an " East f wind," or relative cm-rent from East 
to West, increasing in intensity Avith the increase of latitude, and 
attaining, according to Mr. Carrington's formula, a maximum of in- 
tensity (estimated by the linear amount of momentary retardation) at 

* Mr. Ciuiiugtoii's formula for the amount of diurnal rotatorj- movement in 
longitude for a spot in latitude I is 865' — 165' (sin. / f , wliicli is not very dif- 
ferent from 700'+ 165' (log. I)-, v?bich, however, lie repudiates as representing 
the observations less closely. 

t Great and habitual confusion arises from the use of tlie words East, West, 
Easterly, Westerly, as indicating direction. By an East wind, we would be under- 
stood to mean a wind blowing from the East ; by an Easterly current or drift, 
whether of air or water, one which sets from West towardg the East. 


232 Original Articles. [April, 

52° 49' hel. lat. : that is to say, almost exactly at tlie latitude where 
the sj)ots cease to afford us any further information. Its velocity 
estimated as a surface current at this latitude would be 357 miles per 

There is a considerable analogy in such a system of movements to 
our N.E, and S.E. trade-winds. These also are nil in intensity on the 
equator, and increase in strength with the latitude, up to a certain 
maximum. This, it is true, occui's in a considerably lower latitude than 
53°, but in our ignorance of the law of distribution of temperatiu-e over 
the sun's surface, this can hardly be considered a fatal objection, 
especially when coupled with the very moderate velocity (for such a 
globe as the sun) assigned as their maximum. To render it ap- 
plicable, the photosphere (within the maculiferous region) must be 
assumed to float, and be entirely contained in the indraft current (that 
which sets towards the sun's equator), and this must also be (within 
that region) the upper current, to provide for the carrying back into 
the circulation and redistribution of its matter (perhaps in a less 
luminous state) over the general surface, by the lower : constituting 
possibly the lower envelope which forms the penumbra of a spot ; the 
spot itself, both lunbra and penumbra, being a region in which, owing 
to some cause of disturbance, the movement of the lower cui-rent is 
arrested, and thrown into eddies and ripples. In this view of things, 
the temperature of the equatorial atmosphere must be supposed 
generally lower than that of the polar, which is not incompatible with, 
but on the contrary may be caused by, a more copious emission of heat 
from the former region, which, as Professor Secchi assures us, is really 
the case. 

II. On the second of our two extreme hypotheses, that which makes 
the globe of the sun revolve in 30'''86, the conclusion is very ob- 
vious. As the solar atmosphere must then in its entirety revolve 
quicker than the enclosed globe, there must prevail at every point of 
the surface of the latter a steady and uniform West ivind, increasing 
regularly in intensity from nil at the poles, up to 880 miles per hoiu" 
at the equator. As this current must continually tend to accelerate 
the rotation of the globe by friction, which by the law of reaction must 
tend to induce a state of relative quiescence, while yet the exterior 
current is maintained unabated — this can only be by a force ah extra, 
and we have nothing to fall back upon for such a force but the friction 
of external matter circulating round the sun according to the laws of 
planetary motion, and that of the zodiacal light (the plane of whose 
greatest extension according to the best account we have of it, coin- 
cides with the sun's equator) is ready at hand. In that case between 
a rotation in 25 days, that of the photosphere, and 3 hours that of 
planetary matter revolving freely at 1-lOthof the sun's radius above its 
surface, i. e. between a velocity of 4,609 miles per horn- in the former, 
and 1,012,000 in the latter case, every intermediate gradation of 
velocity must subsist, while between the photosphere and the globe a 
difference of velocity of only 880 miles per horn- exists. 

However enormous this velocity of the external matter, and what- 
ever the density we may attribute to it, we have to accept this last- 

18G4.] IIkkscuel on the Solar Spots. 233 

montioncil acceleration in the (no doubt exceedingly rare) matter of tlic 
solar atmosphere at the level of the photospliere, as the measure of the 
final result of its impact and friction. And on the theory of the frictir)nal 
generation of the smi's heat, it is the amount of vis viva so delivered 
into the sun to which wc have to look for the maintenance of its supply 
of hetit. It would be superfluous to adduce argmuents, to show the 
utter iuade(iuacy of the cause to produce the eft'cct. //' tliis be all, tlie 
origin of the solar heat is as much a mystery as ever. 

III. The intermediate liypothesis may be very suimnarily dismissed. 
It has not the merits of either extreme, and is in contradiction to 
both. It supposes a permanent west wind on the equator, and is there- 
fore inconsistent with any Etesian theory (of a system of trades and 
anti-trades) — and a permanent set of the whole atmosphere, beyond a 
given latitude, to the ivestward, equally contradictory to the theory of 
an external drift, the result of planetary circulation. 

Between the two extreme hypotheses there would seem to exist a 
criicial means of discrimination. The first undoubtedly seems to 
presume an average tendency of the spots towards the sun's equator, 
while the latter involves no conclusion either to that or the contrary 
effect. On this point however, observation is not very positive. Pro- 
fessor Peters is of opinion that there is such a tendency, while Mr. 
Carrington seems to think the contrary. His synoptic table (Observation 
of Solar Spots, p. 220) exhibits an average, though very small prepon- 
derance, in favour of a general movement toivards the poles, on either side 
of the equator — but the individual differences, to whatever cause 
attributable are so very much greater, as to destroy all confidence in 
such a conclusion. From the residt of Professor Fearnley's observations 
on the spot of 1857, whose periods of return went on successively 
increasing on each reappearance of the spot, it may fairly be concluded 
that the spot was receding from the equator. Unfortunately I have not 
been able to ascertain whether such was really the case. 

Mr. Carrington puts forth a sunnise (p. 248) whether some part of 
the irregularity in the maculiferous activity of the sun may not arise 
from the action of Jujjiter on the zodiacal light. To appretiate the 
probability of this we have only to consider — 1st. That the zodiacal 
light can hardly extend beyond the orbit of the earth — assiu-edly not 
its denser portions. 2nd. That its medial plane is that of the sun's 
equator, which is inclined 5° or 6" to the orbit of Jupiter, so that it is 
only when near their common node that any action, even on the 
infinitely attenuated portion of it which may reach so far, can take 
place. And 8rd. That whatever be the form of the zodiacal light in 
section, we have no reason to believe it other than circular in plan. 

Let us suppose, however (and such a supposition has not been 
deemed inadmissible in attempting to accoimt for the periodical retm-n 
of meteors), the existence of an elliptic ring of vaporous, nebidous, or 
small planetary matter, with such a major semiaxis (4*979) as cor- 
responds to a periodic time of each of its particles = 11 '11 years; of 
siich eccentricity as to bring its perihelion within the limits of the 
solar envelopes ; and revolving either in the plane of the ecliptic or 
in some other plane at a more considerable inclination to the sun's 

234 Original Articles. [April, 

equator. Let it be further assumed (still in analogy with assumptions 
not regarded as uni'easonable in the meteoriferous ring), that the dis- 
tribution of the circulating matter in it is not uniform — that it has a 
maximum and minimum of density at nearly, but not quite, opposite 
points, and no gTeat regularity of gradation between them. It is very 
conceivable that the matter of such a ring introducing itself with 
planetary velocity into the upper and rarer regions of the sim's atmo- 
sphere, at an incidence oblique to its regular and uniform equatorial drift, 
might create such disturbances as, either acting directly on the photo- 
sphere, or intermediately through a series of vortices or irregular move- 
ments propagated through the general atmosphere, should break its 
continuity and give rise to spots, conforming in respect of their 
abundance and magnitude to the required law of periodic recurrence. 
If the change of density from the maximum to the minimum were 
gi'adual, but from the minimum to the maximum more abrupt, so as to 
allow the distiu-bances to subside gi'adually, and recommence ab- 
ruptly — the fresh and violent impulse would be delivered first of all 
on a region remote from the equator (by reason of the obliquity of the 
ring), and would give rise to a recommencement of the spots in com- 
paratively high latitudes. 

If the section of such a ring as we have supposed at its aphelion 
were 7iil, the period of 11 -ll years would be strictly carried out; the 
maxima and minima would succeed each other with j)erfect regularity, 
and. the paucity and abundance of the spots in the several phases of the 
same period would follow a fixed ratio. But if not, the several parts of the 
ring would not revolve in precisely equal times — the period of 11 "ll years 
woidd be that of some dominant medial line, or common axis of all the 
sections in which a considerable majority of its matter was contained — 
and the want of perfect coincidence of the other revolutions woiild 
more or less confuse, without obliterating the law of periodicity, which, 
supposing the difference to be comprised within narrow limits, might 
still stand out very prominently. Now it might happen that there were 
two such medial lines, or more copiously stocked ellipses, each having 
a maximum and minimum of density, and that their difference of 
periodic times should be such as to bring round a conjunction of theii* 
maxima in 56 or any other considerable number of years : and thus 
would arise a phenomenon the exact parallel of Dr. Wolf's long period 
and his series of greater and lesser maxima. 

It will, of course, be objected that the resistance of the solar atmo- 
sphere would retard and ultimately destroy such a ring. But we must 
bear in mind the extreme tenuity of this atmosphere in its upper regions, 
and that our ring need not consist of mere vaporous matter. It might 
be a collection of exceedingly small planetules, which, however thinly 
dispersed over an immense space in aphelio and in the remoter parts of 
their orbits, would become crowded together in perihelia, acting as it 
were by a joint rush to produce the distm-bance, but each individually 
suffering a resistance infinitesimal compared to its inertia. The comet 
of 1843 passed within the region we are contemplating, and its motion 
was not destroyed. 

The orbits of our planetules would in fact be, j^'^''^' excellence, 

18G1.| Samuelsoi^ on Steam Nacujulion. 235 

coinctaiy ; they would sun'ouiid the sun very closely for nearly half 
its circinuferencc ; and if tlieir common perihelion should occur in or 
near the longitude which the earth has in December, a preponderance 
of spots in the antumn and winter months would he far from im- 

Our ring might lie in the plane of the ecliptic or near it, and so 
might intersect the orbit of the Earth, or Venus, or Jupiter. Of the 
influence of such intersection we may conjecture much, but can discern 
nothing distinctly ; and oiu' readers may be disposed to tliink that wo 
have advanced far enough already into the regions of conjectui-e. 


By Marten Samuelson, Member of the Institute of Civil Engineers. 

It seldom occurs to the active minds engaged in the consideration 
of man's age, and his relations to the lower animals, that, in order to 
arrive at accurate conclusions upon these subjects, it is necessary, not 
only to study the traces he has left behind him in the earth's strata, 
and the history of his recent physical development, but also to direct 
the attention to the method in which he has executed plans that seem 
to have been prompted by some suj)erhmnan — nay, why need we hesi- 
tate to say — Divine agency. 

How does it happen that throughout the thousands of years in the 
historic record, as well as in the ages before the suj)posed date of his 
creation, during which we are now taught to believe that man existed 
in dark ignorance, not the remotest idea appears to have occiu'red to 
him of the practicability of rendering the physical forces subservient 
to his will ; and that up to the commencement of the ^jresent centmy, 
his utmost attainments were imable to rescue him from the power of 
the elements ? For it is only an affair of yesterday that he was bound 
to go or stay, to lie becalmed or be driven he knev>^ not whither across 
the boundless main, as it pleased the volition of the tempest. 

And again, dismissing for the present the consideration of the 
marvellous strides which were made in the new locomotive enterj)rise 
after it was once fairly started, is it not a matter for reflection, as we 
look abroad over the nations of the earth, to find perhaps side by side 
with the Leviathan (for it is more than probable that she may one day 
be ploughing her way across the Pacific Ocean) the hollowed-out trunk 
of a tree, the jirimitive boat, filled wdth naked savages and proi^elled 
by paddles which, with the boat itself, may have been shaped by means 
of the serrated bone of some predaceous fish ? 

Who will venture, with such a contrast before his eyes to-day, to 
assert that man — that is, reasoning man — is not a creatiu-e of yesterday ? 

It appears to us to be the Creator's intention, just as He has pre- 
served for us the fossil remains of extinct species of animals, in order 

236 Original Articles. [April, 

to aiford us a retrospective glance over the early history of the globe 
and its animated freight, to have retained also, fresh and living before 
our eyes, the illustrations of aboriginal barbarism in the persons of 
men accompanied by their primitive appliances, so that we may not 
excuse ourselves, through ignorance of the past, from seeking to afford 
a worthy example, and to mould the minds of future generations. 

These are indeed interesting subjects for the consideration of 
ethnologists and anthropologists ; but unfortimately (or perhaps w^e 
should say fortunately for our readers) we are imable to proceed 
with such inquiries, for we are reminded that we have imdertaken, 
in the space of a few brief pages, to fm'nish a retrospect of the 
past history of Steam Navigation, and to indicate, in as many lines, 
what we believe to be its future prospects. Nor have we, in the 
performance of this task, to overcome the last-named difficulty alone ; 
that is, of condensing into a few pages the history of what we shall 
term a scientiiic art, upon which many volumes, some of them of no 
mean proportions, have been written. There is still another fence 
between our readers and ourselves, and that is one in which we shall 
seek only to break a gap for the purpose of opening a commu- 
nication with those who are likely to be interested in our brief story. 
Should the heads of this narrative have the effect, as we trust they 
may, of whetting their appetites, and of causing them to long for 
deeper draughts from the som-ces whence we have drawn, then indeed 
they must widen the passage for themselves, and effect an entrance 
into our field ; for it would be impossible for us to drag all oui* tech- 
nicalities through the narrow aperture which enables the practical man 
of science to hold converse with the popular reader, or the tyro in 

Steam Navigation has, during the brief period of its existence (for 
its history extends but over half a centiuy), attained a degree of per- 
fection which may not be excelled for generations to come. It has 
linked, more closely the tropics and the poles, the old world and the 
new ; and, with the exception, perhaps, of the Electric Telegraph, 
there is no modern invention that has effected more in the cause of 
civilization than the engine for marine locomotion. Even in its 
relation to Electric Telegraphy, everyone must admit that it has 
been the immediate precm-sor, if not the instigator, of that power ; 
for what was left to man after he had succeeded in holding communi- 
cation with his fellows thousands of miles away, in the course of a few 
days, converting him who was a stranger in distant climes into an 
immediate neighbour — what remained for him, we say, but to contrive 
the means of bringing this one still nearer, for the purpose of convers- 
ing with him as though they abode imder the same roof? Was it not 
over the well-trodden path of the Millers, the Fultons, the Watts, and 
the Stephensons, that Wheatstone conceived the idea of winging his 
flight ? 

Indeed, with the discovery of steam navigation there commenced 
quite a new era in the history of oiu- race. Many physical and mecha- 
nical difficulties had to be overcome before sufficient progress was 
made in the art to make it the means of extending the commerce of 

1864.] Samuelson on Steam Navigation. 237 

tlic world, of nourishing the poor with better food, or of providing 
fresli comforts and luxuries for the rich ; but greatly as we may plume 
ourselves as Englishmen upon the share we have had in its rapid 
development, still it behoves us, in the si)irit of impartial chroniclers, 
to award the merit of the fii'st discovery not to one of our own nation, 
but to an intelligent and enterprising foreigner — a Spaniard. 

Perhaps the earliest account we have of a vessel being propelled 
by steam power is contained in some manuscripts in the archives of 
Salamanca ; these appear to jirove that in the year 1543 a naval 
captain, named Don Blasco de Garray, invented a machine moved by 
steam, and capable of propelling ships independently of oars or sails. 
The apparatus referred to was fitted to a vessel of about 200 tons, 
called ' La Santissima Trinidada,' and an experiment was conducted in 
Bai'celoua Roads on the 17th June, 1543, in the presence of the Emperor 
Charles V., his son, Philip XL, and many illustrious persons, which 
resulted in the ship's attaining a speed of one league per hour ; but the 
apparatus apjiears to have been condemned, and no further attention 
Avas given to it, on accoimt of the apprehension of explosion from the 
boiler, and the great complexity and expense of the machine ; although 
the Emperor is stated to have reimbursed De Garray for all the 
expenses he had inciu-red in making his experiment. 

In 173G, Jonathan Hull took out a patent for applying the steam- 
engine as a motive power to propel ships ; and quoting from the 
description of the invention, we have the following : — " It has been 
demonstrated that when the air is driven out of a vessel of 30 inches dia- 
meter, the atmosphere will press on it to the weight of 4 tons 16 cwt. ; 
and when proper instruments are applied to it, it must drive a vessel 
with great force." He also described the machinery for working a pair 
of j; addle-wheels, and a drawing was given, representing a tug towing 
a two-decker against the wind, this tug having a chimney from which 
smoke issued, and in the after part of the boat was an engine working 
two paddle-wheels attached to sjmrs abaft each quarter. But the 
steam engine was at this time in a very imperfect state, so that no 
practical success was attained, although a vast number of experiments 
were made by many ingenious men. 

It was not until the towering genius of Watt had made the steam- 
engine the complete and elegant machine that it now ig, that steam 
navigation began to exhibit any signs of success ; and we therefore pass 
over the various experiments (many of them unsuccessful) which were 
made, imtil we come to those of William Patrick Miller, who in 1787 
took out a patent for i)addle-wheels (very similar to those at present 
used) for propelling vessels ; and a Mr. Symingion having about this 
time patented a new application of the steam-engine, was introduced to 
Mr. Miller ; and they between them contrived to make a small steamer, 
which moved at the rate of five miles per hour ; but this was little 
more than a toy, as the cylinder was only 4 inches diameter. It may 
be interesting to the reader to know that the engine last referred to 
may be seen in the South Kensing-ton Museum. 

In 1788, John Fitch obtained a patent for the application of steam 
to navigation in the states of Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, 

238 Orifjinal Articles. [April, 

and Delaware ; lie induced several moneyed men to assist him, and after 
a considerable outlay, constructed a steam-boat, which, however, only 
attained a speed of 3 miles an hoiu*. The shareholders were, notwith- 
standing, induced to make another trial ; and a second vessel was 
completed, which went 8 miles an hour. 

Another American, James Eamsey, had also taken out a patent, 
and in 1788 he came over to England, where he induced a wealthy 
American merchant to join him in building a steam-boat ; but Eamsey 
died before its completion. The vessel was finished and afloat in 
1793, when she made several trij)s on the Thames, effecting about 
4 knots per hour. 

In the year 1801, Lord Dundas, a large proprietor in the Forth 
and Clyde Canal, employed Mr. Symington to conduct a series of expe- 
riments on steam-boats, in order that they might be substituted for the 
horses which were used for drawing the canal boats. These experi- 
ments resulted in the construction of the first practical steam-boat, 
named the ' Charlotte Dundas.' The particulars of the trial of this 
boat are described as follows : — 

"Having previously made various experiments, in March, 1802, at 
Lock No. 20, Lord Dimdas, the great patron and steam-boat promoter, 
along with Archibald Spm*, Esq., of Elderslie, and several gentlemen 
of their acquaintance, being on board the steam-boat, took in tow two 
loaded vessels, the ' Active ' and ' Euphemia ' of Grangeworth, Gow 
and Ephine masters, each upwards of 70 tons burden, and with great 
ease carried them thi'ough the long reach of the Forth and Clyde 
Canal to Port Dundas, a distance of 19^ miles, in six hours, although 
dmnng the whole time it blew a very strong breeze right ahead, so 
much so that no other vessel could move to windward in the canal 
that day." 

This placed beyond a doubt the utility of the steamer in canals 
and rivers, and ultimately on the seas. In spite, however, of the great 
success of this experiment, objections were raised by the proprietors 
of the navigation to the use of steam-boats, fearful lest the banks of 
the canal would suffer from the wash of the undulation produced by 
the j)addle-wheels. The ' Charlotte Dundas ' was therefore laid aside, 
and, with very few exceptions, no further experiments have been made 
with steam navigation in canals ; where such has been the case, the 
screw has been resorted to. 

In 180G, Robert Fulton, an American engineer, commenced a 
steam-boat, which was completed in 1807, and destined to nm between 
New York and Albany, a distance of 120 miles, which she accom- 
plished in about 30 houi'S. The terror and siu-prise of the people at 
Albany was very great when they saw this strange ship approaching 
them, and is thus described by an American journalist : — • 

" She had the most terrific appearance from other vessels that were 
navigating the river. The steamer, as many do now in America, used 
dry pine wood for fuel, which sent forth a column of ignited vapour 
many feet above the flue ; and whenever the fire was stirred, a galaxy 
of sparks flew off, and in the night had a very beautiful appearance. 
Notwithstanding the wind and tide were averse to its approach, they 

18G4.] Samuei.son on Steam Navujation. 239 

saw with astonislinicut tliat it was ra2)idly coming towards tliom ; and 
when it came so near tliat tlic noiso of tlic macliincry and paddh;8 was 
heard, the crews in some instances shrunk beneath their decks from 
the terrific sight, and left their vessels to go ashore ; while others 
prostrated themselves and besought Providence to protect them from 
the ap2)roach of the horrible monster which- was marching on the tide, 
and lighting its path by the fire which it vomited." 

She was called the ' Clermont,' and was the first steamer which, as 
well as being a practical success, rcmimerated her owners. 

About this time, a countryman of Fulton's, John Cox Stevens, had 
completed a steamer ; but as Fulton had obtained the exclusive right 
of navigating the w^atcrs of the state of New York, Stevens boldly 
determined to convey his ship to the Delaware by sea : he was thus 
the first who took a steam-boat to sea. Fulton had much prejudice to 
overcome in introducing steam navigation, but the Americans soon 
became aware of the immense commercial advantage that must result 
from its adoption, and accordingly steamers multiplied with great 
rapidity, so that in the year 1821 there were not less than 300 steamers 
at work in America. 

Returning again to England, it was not imtil the year 1812 that 
steam navigation was brought into practical use in this country, when 
Mr. Henry Bell started on the Clyde a small steam-boat, called the 
' Comet.' She was only 40 feet long, 10 feet 6 inches beam, and of 
3^ horse-power. There was nothing novel in this small boat, and, in 
fact, Symington's ' Charlotte Duudas,' which has already been referred 
to, was a far more perfect steamer than either Fulton's ' Clermont ' or 
Bell's ' Comet ;' but great merit is due to Bell that he succeeded in 
establishing steam navigation in this coimtry, just as Fulton had done 
in America. To Symington, however, is due the honour of having 
constructed the first practical steam-boat. 

From this time the number of steam-boats began to augment with 
astonishing rapidity, not on the Clyde alone, but on many of the prin- 
cipal rivers of England. The steam navigation of rivers having now 
become an established fact, enterprise soon determined that steamers 
should be sent to sea. Accordingly, in 1815, the 'Rob Roy,' a 
steamer of 90 tons and 30 horse-power commenced running between 
Glasgow and Belfast, and was therefore the fii'st regular sea-going 
steamer in England. 

In 1816, several wealthy men formed a company for the purpose 
of establishing a line of steamers between Dublin and Holyhead ; they 
had two built, the ' Britannia ' and ' Hibernia,' both of 107 tons and 
20 horse-power. In this early stage of steam navigation they accom- 
plished the run with tolerable regularity, but the defects in the form 
of the ships and the imperfection of the machinery caused them even- 
tually to be placed on one side. The problem of making successful 
sea-going steamers being now thoroughly solved, they began rapidly to 
increase their nimibers, and steam navigation quickly extended to 
other countries, France, Russia, and Holland all pressing forward to 
participate in the grand invention. It would be needless to enimierate 

240 Original Articles. [April, 

the various steamers wMch now made their appearance in every part 
of this country. 

The first regular steamer which plied on the Thames was the 
'Margery,' of 70 tons and 14 horse-power. She made the trip from 
London to Gravesend in one day, returning the next ; but another 
steamer, called the ' Thames,' soon eclipsed her performance, making 
the trip there and back in the same day. 

In 1822, a company was formed, with the bold idea of establishing 
a steam communication with India by what is so well known as the 
Overland Koute. It became necessary that steamers should be placed 
in the Ked Sea to meet those coming from England, and accordingly a 
vessel called the ' Enterprise ' was built and launched by Messrs. 
Gordon of Deptford, in February, 1825 ; she was rigged as a three- 
masted lugger, and was fitted with engines of 120 horse-power, by 
Messrs. Maudslay. The boiler was of copper, and in one piece, 
weighing 32 tons ; her consumption of fuel was about 12 tons per 24 
hours. She sailed from Falmouth deeply laden with coal for the 
voyage, on the 16th August, 1825, and arrived in Diamond Harbour, 
Bengal, 7th December, the distance being 13,700 miles ; which was 
therefore accomplished in 113 days, whereof 63 were under steam and 
40 under sail, the remaining ten days having been occupied in cleaning 
her boiler at St. Thomas and in coaling at the Cape. The result of 
this experiment was very disappointing, both to the public and the 
shareholders, as they had anticipated that less than 80 days would 
have sufficed for the voyage. Government, however, bought the ship 
for 40,000/., so that the enterprising speculator lost but little ; she 
was used in the Burmese war with great success. Although, however, 
the ' Enterprise ' had not realized the expectation of the projectors, 
we cannot but regard her as a success, for she was in a gi'cat measure 
the pioneer in long steam sea-voyages. 

In 1827, Government established a line of steamers between Fal- 
mouth and the Mediterranean ; these vessels averaged thi'oughout the 
year 7^ knots per hour. At Bombay, in 1830, a steamer was built of 
400 tons bm'then and 160 horse-power, named the ' Hugh Lindsay,' 
with the object of establishing steam communication between Bombay 
and Suez ; and on the 20th March she started from Bombay, and 
reached Aden (where a coaling station had been provided) on the 7th 
April, and thence to Suez, where she arrived on the 29th May. This 
voyage fulfilled its object in showing the practicability of a rapid 
steam communication with Europe, and eventually led to the establish- 
ment of the Peninsular and Oriental Company. 

In 1836, a company was incorporated at Bristol with the magnifi- 
cent project of Transatlantic steam navigation. Hitherto, no steamers 
of any great magnitude had been constructed, and those which had 
made long voyages had depended on their sails as much as on their 
steam power ; but this company, which was called the Great Western 
Steam Navigation Company, felt convinced that to convey passengers 
and mails with regularity, they must depend on their steam power 
only. To accomplish this, hov/ovcr, the ship would be compelled to 

18G4.] SAmvELBOiif on Steam Navigation. 211 

carry a very largo quantity of coal, and must bo i^rovidcd with great 
cngiiio power ; slio would therefore have to be constructed of such 
dimensions as would enable her to comply with these requirements ; 
hence they determined to build a ship of wood, called the ' Great 

She was built at Bristol in the year 1837, by Mr. William Patterson ; 
her jjrincipal dimensions being 212 feet by 35 feet beam and 34 feet 
deep. These dimensions were at that time considered gigantic, and 
the idea of being able to make a steamer of these proportions (that is 
to say, of so great a length in comi^arison with her breadth) to cross 
the Atlantic with safety was scouted by many scientific men as utttJily 
impracticable ; one of the great objections raised being that such a 
ship must inevitably break her back when poised between two waves, 
the middle being imsupported. Dr. Lardner was the foremost amongst 
the scientific men of the day who proved most satisfactorily to " him- 
self " that the ' Great Western' must be an utter failure, both from a 
scientific point of view and also as a mercantile specidation ; and yet 
Lardner has compiled many really useful works, and has manifested 
considerable intelligence on most subjects with which he has dealt. 
It certainly shows us how easily scientific theorists, arguing from 
assumed data and not from experiment, are led to make the most posi- 
tive assertions, which prove to be wide of the actual results ; at the 
same time we must not forget that sound practice can only be acquired 
in conjunction with, or assisted by, soimd theory ; the latter should, 
however, always be deduced from careful experiment. 

In spite of the forebodings of Dr. Lardner and other wise pro- 
phets, the ' Great Western ' was built and successfully laimched, being 
at that time regarded as a greater wonder than is the unfortimate 
' Great Eastern ' at this day. 

She was fitted with side lever-engines of 420 horse-power, manu- 
factured by Messrs. Maudslay, Sons, and Field, of London ; the 
cylinders were 74 inches diameter, with a stroke of 7 feet ; the paddle- 
wheels were 28 feet diameter, the paddle-boards being 10 feet long, 
2 feet wide, and 20 in number. At length this wonder of steam- ships 
was ready for sea, and on the 8th April, 1837, she started on her first 
voyage across the Atlantic, with only 7 passengers on board. The 
run to New York was accomplished in 15 days 10 houi-s, which was 
certainly for that time a very remarkable performance ; and towards 
the end of May she made her appearance in England with 66 passen- 
gers, having performed the voyage in 14 days ; thereby falsifying the 
sage predictions of those worthy j)hilosopliers who had so confidentially 
prophesied her incaj^acity to cross the Atlantic Ocean. She continued 
to run with the greatest success, weathering the most tremendous gales, 
and proving herself to be what might well be called, even in these 
advanced days of steam navigation, a most satisfactory ship. As a 
specimen of sound shipbuilding, good engineering, and mercantile 
prosperity, she was an miexoeptionable midertaking. She was econo- 
mical with her coal, burning from 36 to 42 tons per day, or about 4 to 
4^1bs. per indicated horse-power per hour, a consumption of fuel quite 
as economical as that of the average of steamers at the present time, 

242 Original Artirles. L^pril, 

so that we liave not eftected much in the economy of fuel within the 
last twenty-five years. 

This admirable steamer was broken up only a few years since in 
the Thames. 

By a strange coincidence, a steamer called the ' Sirius ' started on 
the same day with the ' Great Western,' — the 8th April ; she also 
was designed with the same object as the ' Great Western,' but she 
occupied 19 days in making the voyage from Cork to New York, not- 
withstanding that she was aided by her sails ; so that to the ' Great 
Western ' is due the glory of having first completed a successful trans- 
atlantic voyage, and she crossed the Atlantic no less than 84 times 
between her first voyage and the year 1844. 

The complete success of the ' Great Western ' led the directors of 
the Great Western Steam-Ship Company, under the advice of the late 
Mr. Brunei, to greatly extend their former efforts, and a steamer of 
colossal dimensions was projected as being likely to prove a propor- 
tionately greater success, both as a ship and as a mercantile specidation. 
The celebrated steamer ' Great Britain ' was the result of this deter- 
mination. But at this time the use of iron in preference to wood for 
shipbuilding purposes was strongly advocated by many able men, and 
several iron steamers had already been most successfully constructed ; 
hence, after careful investigation into the comparative merits of iron 
and wood, and with the advice of Mr. Brunei, it was resolved that the 
new ship should be built of iron. Her principal dimensions are — 
length between perpendiculars, 289 feet ; breadth, 51 feet ; depth, 
32i feet ; tonnage, 3,433 old measurement. The keel of the vessel 
was laid in July, 1839, and she was launched in the presence of his 
Eoyal Highness the late Prince Consort, 19th July, 1843.* At that 
time she was considered of gigantic proportions, and we cannot but 
admire the bold enterprise and masterly conception of the projectors. 
She natui-ally excited intense curiosity, and was visited by immense 
numbers of spectators, including shipbuilders, engineers, naval officers, 
and distinguished savants of every nation. At this time Mr. Smith 
had most satisfactorily developed the fitness of the screw as a propeller 
for steam-shij)s in the elaborate experiments of the ' Archimedes ' and 
H.M.S. ' Eattler.' It was with the latter vessel that an interesting 
experiment was tried, for the purpose of comparison between the screw 
and paddle-wheels as propellers. The ' Eattler ' was precisely the 
same form and power as the ' Polyphemus ' paddle-steamer. The two 
ships were tied together, and steamed away as rapidly as they could ; 
the result being that the ' Polyphemus ' had to give in to her rival, the 
' Eattler.' Mr. Brunei, in consequence, strongly advocated the appli- 
cation of the screv/ to the ' Great Britain,' and it was finally determined 
that she should be fitted with one. She was therefore provided with 
very ponderous machinery of 1,000 horse-power ; the engines consist- 

* A period of four years. What would become of Steam Navigation, and in 
fact, of the commerce of this country if shipbuilding had remained stationary in 
this particular ? There are now fiims in England who can, /« o;w' ?/ea/-, execute 
orders for vessels in the aggregate amounting to six times the tormage of the 
'Great Britain.' 

1864.] Hamvelbon on Steam Navigation. 243 

ing of 4 cylinders, 88 inches diameter and 6 feet stroke ; on the shaft 
of the engines a great drum, 18 feet diameter, was fixed, and the screw 
shaft was also provided with a drmn 6 feet diameter, and the motion 
was commimicated from the engine to the screw shaft by means of four 
chains, so that the screw made three revolutions to one of the engine. 
She had six masts, with iron rigging, as offering less resistance to a 
head wind than the ordinary rigging. The mid-ship section of the 
shij) is of a peculiar form, the sides falling in very much, so that at a 
light draiight she would not be nearly so broad at her water-line as at 
a deeper immersion ; but before she left the works it was deemed 
advisable to put her machinery on board. The effect of this was th t 
she was brought to her bearings at the greatest beam, and having to 
pass through a lock, it was found that the widest part of the ship came 
in contact with it, and it was necessary to widen the upper portion of 
the lock to enable the vessel to pass through into the river. At last 
she started on her trial trip, and her machinery and proj)eller gave the 
greatest satisfaction. She made the voyage across the Atlantic in the 
most successful manner imtil she was unfortunately stranded in Dun- 
drum Bay, where she lay a whole winter ; but by the unceasing efforts 
of Cajitain Claxton and Mr. Bremner, she was at length raised, removed 
from her perilous situation, and taken to Liverpool, where she was 
thoroughly repaired. Her machinery having been most seriously 
injured, it was taken out and replaced by a pair of oscillating geared 
engines, by Messrs. John Penn and Son, of 500 horse-power, or only 
half the power with which she was originally provided ; but with 
these new engines she accomplished even a greater speed under steam 
than she had attained with the old machinery, which was altogether 
disproportionate to her size. Her rig was also altered, and she is now 
ship-rigged, and as handsome as any steamer entering the port of 
Liverpool. She has made some of the fastest voyages to Australia and 
back on record, and may fairly be deemed one of the most successful 
and splendid steamers ever built. 

The ' Great Western ' having led the way, there were soon plenty 
of followers, and magnificent steamers began to multiply, amongst 
which we may mention the ' Britisli Queen ' and the ' President,' the 
total loss of which was such a terrible disaster in the early days of 
transatlantic steam navigation. Then we have the splendid fleet of 
the West India Mail Company ; the Collins' line, with its ' Ai'ctic,' 
' Pacific,' ' Baltic,' ' Atlantic,' &c. ; the Cunard line, with its 'Acadia,' 
' Asia,' ' Arabia,' and the magnificent ' Persia ' and ' Scotia.' The 
' Persia ' constituted another great advance in size and speed. This 
magnificent steamer was built by Mr. Robert Naj)ier, of Glasgow, and 
was launched the 3rd July, 1855 ; her extreme length is 389 feet ; 
breadth 45 feet, and over the paddle-boxes 71 feet 6 inches, and her 
depth 31 feet 6 inches. She is fitted ^ith side-lever engines of 850 
horse-power ; cylinders lOOi inches diameter, mth a stroke of 10 feet ; 
she has eight boilers, with five fmnaccs in each ; and her paddle- 
wheels are 38 feet 6 inches diameter, the floats being 10 feet 8 inches 
by 2 feet, and 28 in number. She carries 1,200 tons of coal, and her 
displacement at 22 feet draught is 5,400 tons. 

244 Oriijhml Articles. [April, 

The ' Scotia ' is a sister-sliip, but a little larger. 

Then we have the superb fleet of the Peninsular and Oriental 
Company — the ' Pera,' ' Ceylon,' ' Massilia,' ' Delta,' ' Simla ; ' and 
for this Company also was built the magnificent screw - steamer 
' Himalaya,' by Messrs. C. J. Mare and Co., in 1853 ; her extreme 
length being 372 feet ; breadth for tonnage 46 feet 2 inches, and depth 
of hold 24 feet 9 inches ; she is fitted with horizontal-trunk engines, 
by Messrs. J. Penn and Son ; cylinder 84 inches diameter, and 3 feet 
6 inches stroke ; her proj)eller is 18 feet diameter, and 28 feet pitch. 
She was pm'chased by Government for a transport ship during the 
Crimean war, and on one occasion she conveyed 418 troops and 
372 horses from Liverpool to Constantinople, a distance of 3,620 miles 
in a little over 14 days, although she partly lay-to from stress of 
weather between Cape St. Vincent and Gibraltar. 

We now arrive at a period in the history of steam navigation to 
which it is impossible to refer without a j)assing word of reflection. 
In the beginning of this article we spoke of the extraordinary enter- 
prises that Man has from time to time undertaken, as it were, by 
inspiration ; and if, in this respect, there be one more marked than 
any other, illustrating at the same time the active restlessness of his 
reasoning nature, it is the undertaking we have now to record, namely, 
the construction of the ' Leviathan,' or, as she is at present called, 
the ' Great Eastern.' 

In days of yore, the " wonders of the world " presented indelible 
records of Man's superstition, of his artistic taste, and of his jirowess 
in war ; and we have surviving to the present time the Sphinx, the 
ruins of beautiful temples, the Great Wall of China, &c. ; all enter- 
prises of the same essential nature. The construction of the ' Levia- 
than ' is, however, not only characteristic of the great attribute of oiu- 
age, namely, utilitarian enterprise, but it has developed the minds of 
men in a new direction, and thus led to a greatly-extended application 
of the physical forces. The origin of the idea which led to the 
building of the great ship was this : — 

All the steamers to which reference has been made, great as they 
were, could not carry sufficient coal for a very long voyage without 
deviating so much from the direct route to obtain fresh supplies of 
fuel at the coaling stations, as to greatly lengthen the voyage ; thus 
in steaming round the Cape to India or Australia they would have to 
call at St. Vincent, the Cape of Good Hope, and the Mauritius, to 
obtain coal, which had to be sent out to those places. Hence steamers 
which have accomplished the voyage to Australia in a very short 
time have lost immense sums of money through the ruinous price of 
fuel at these stations, in sj^ite of their having both a full cargo and 
complement of passengers ; and in extra long voyages fast-sailing 
clippers have altogether beaten the steamers, inasmuch as they have 
effected the passage to Australia in quite as short time as the fastest 

Brunei therefore proposed that a shij) should be built of such 
dimensions as would enable her to carry sufficient coal for the longest 
voyage ; and as the cost of this coal at home would be about one-third 

1864.] Samuelson on Steam Navigation. 245 

of tlic average price paid on tlic voyage to Australia for ordinary 
steamers, she would be worked with far greater economy than other 
boats, besides making the voyage in a much shorter period. It was 
with this object that the ' Great Eastern ' was projected. 

This gigantic vessel was constructed by Mr. John Scott Enssell, 
under the superintendence and direction of Mr. Brunei ; her prin- 
cipal dimensions being 691 feet extreme length ; 680 feet between the 
perpendiculars; breadth across paddle-boxes, 118 feet; breadth of 
hull, 83 feet ; depth, 58 feet ; and her tonnage by the old measure- 
ment, 22,500 tons ; she has stowage for 6,000 tons of cargo, and her 
coal-bunkers will hold 12,000 tons. She is built on what is termed 
the cellular principle, being similar in construction to the tubes of 
the Menai Bridge, so that she is virtually a double ship, or one vessel 
placed inside of another, with partitions running fore and aft between 
her two " skins." She is divided into twelve water-tight compart- 
ments, and the weight of iron in the hull is 8,000 tons. She is pro- 
pelled by a combination of paddle-wheels and screw. The engines 
for working the paddles consist of foiu- oscillating cylinders 74 inches 
diameter and 14 feet stroke, each cylinder complete weighing 38 tons ; 
they are of 1,000 nominal, or 3,538 indicated horse-power. The 
paddle-wheels are 56 feet diameter, and the floats are 13 feet by 3 feet, 
and 30 in number. The screw-engines consist also of four cylinders 
86 inches diameter and 4 feet stroke, and ai-e of 1,600 nominal, or 
4,610 indicated horse-jjower ; the screw is 24 feet diameter, and 
44 feet pitch. The boilers for this stupendous machinery are ten in 
number, each boiler weighing upwards of 50 tons ; four of them drive 
the paddle-engine, and six the screw. She has also powerful auxiliary 
engines for tui-ning the screw when under sail, and has no less than 
ten donkey-engines for pumping, and for various other piu'poses. 

She possesses accommodation for 800 first-class passengers, 2,000 
second-class, and 1,200 third-class; and her principal saloon is 100 feet 
long, 36 feet wide, and 13 feet high. The consumption of coal 
amounts to 12^ tons per hour, and the greatest speed by paddles 
and screw separately is as follows : — Paddles alone, 8 knots ; screw 
alone, 9 knots ; giving the screw a decided j^reference over the paddles. 
The cubic feet in paddle engine-room, including boiler space, is 
116,000 ; and the cubic feet in the screw engine-room, including boiler 
space, is 112,000; mean draiight of water, 23 feet 8.t inches; mean 
eflective diameter of paddles, 48 feet 7f inches ; mean slip of paddles, 
17'4 per cent. ; mean slip of screw, 17'9 per cent. ; mean consumption 
of coal per hour-, 12x tons ; mean miles per hour, 14x^3 ; coal consumed 
per indicated horse-power, 3^- lbs. ; ditto per nominal horse-power, 
11| lbs. ; greatest distance rim in 24 hours, 360 miles ; mean revo- 
lution of paddles per minute, lOJ ; of screw, 36f ; mean displacement, 
19,273^ tons; or, with 5,000 tons of coals on board at 24 feet 
10 inches draught, 20,940 tons. 

As a specimen of expert workmanship and strength the ' Great 
Eastern' has never been excelled. 

The follovdng particulars of length and beam of some of the 
VOL. I. s 

246 Original Articles. [April, 

principal transatlantic and war steamers will give a general idea of 
the size of the monster steamer last alluded to. 

Comparative Dimensions of a few of the Largest Steamers. 


Great Western . . 1838 First Atlantic steamer 

Great Britain . . 1844 First Ocean screw steamer 

Himalaya .... 185.3 

Persia 1856 . 

Duke of Wellington . 1 855 First-rate line-of-battle ship 

Warrior .... 1861 Iron-plated frigate 

Great Eastern . . 1858 

















In order, however, more fully to illustrate the great difference in 
size between the first successful transatlantic steamer, the ' Great 
Western,' and the last, the ' Great Eastern,' as well as to afford some 
idea of the intermediate steps in the progress of steam navigation, the 
accompanying plate will be of some service. It exhibits also the 
difference in the general construction of the hull of the vessels ; the 
smaller 'midship section representing the usual system of construction, 
and the larger one showing the cellular method adopted in the ' Great 

Being the largest steamer afloat, we have felt ourselves justified in 
entering rather more fully into the details of the construction of the 
' Great Eastern,' — the more so as it is probable that she will remain 
unrivalled for many years to come. Independently of her si-ze, she is 
throughout one of the finest specimens of naval architecture and 
mechanical genius extant, doing credit alike to her constructor and 
designer. The ' Great Eastern,' in common with many of the works of 
Mr. Brunei, is rather an illustration of the talent and energy which can 
be brought to bear upon mechanical science than, so far, a success from 
a mercantile^ point of view ; in fact, Mr. Brunei has throughout the 
whole of his life been an example of genius without practical results. 
We have only to look at the various works executed by his father 
and himself to exemplify this ; the Thames Tunnel to wit, the Great 
Western Kailway works, the Box Tunnel, the Harbro' cutting, and 
last, though not least, the Great Eastern, a scientific success, but so 
far a mercantile failure. This vessel is so much in advance of the 
age and the conveniences which it affords, and the expenses in case 
of repair from damage or otherwise are necessarily so exorbitant, that 
few if any speculators can be found to embark a considerable amount 
of capital in her as an investment. There is no wet or dry dock at 
present in existence sufficiently large to admit her ; consequently, 
when the most ordinary repairs are necessary, and even when the 
vessel requires painting, she has to be laid aground, and from the 
peculiarity of her form, having no keel, (as will be seen from the ac- 
companying sketch,) it is impossible to get to her bottom without 
excavating the ground from beneath her. The expenses of loading 
and unloading too, are serious items in the working of so large a ship, 
and can only be compensated by long voyages ; for what may be called 



































1 D£fTM 
























18G1. 1 Samuelson on Steam Navigation. 247 

her terminal expenses would tbns be only incuiTed at longer intervals 
than in short voyages. As we i)rogress, however, in the construction of 
docks and other necessary naval works, they will no donht be so enlarged 
and by degrees be of sncli a class as to admit a vessel the size of, or 
even larger than the ' Great Eastern ; ' for we fully believe that we 
are not yet at the extreme limit of size : another cj^uarter of a century 
will, in our opinion, see vessels of even a larger tonnage than the ' Great 
Eastern ' afloat. This will, however, take many years, and in the 
meantime the precursors of enlarged views have had to pay the penalty 
of their hardihood, as was the case in a minor degree with reference 
to the steamer ' Enterprise ' before alluded to. 

Of the ultimate commercial success of the ' Great Eastern ' we 
entertain no doubt whatever, but this can only be realized by what 
may be termed single-handed enter^jrise, and through her employment 
on a long voyage, such as that to Australia or India. It will be 
dependent too upon a modification in the propelling power of the 
vessel, as well as ujjon the price at which she can now be obtained. 
In January last this magiiificent ship was put up to public auction by 
the mortgagees, and although a reserve price of only 130,000Z. was 
placed upon her, the highest bid was 50,000Z. Probably before these 
pages go to press she may have been sold without reserve for a sum 
under 100,000/.; * and it is only when we recollect that she originally 
cost above three quarters of a million of money, that we are able to 
realize the terrible sacrifice which has been made by the present 
proprietors. Much honour and credit is, however, due to those 
whose enterprise induced them to embark in the speculation in the 
fii'st instance, and who thereby rendered patent to the world the feasi- 
bility of constructing a vessel of dimensions so much gTeater than any 
previous attempt in naval architecture. 

It will be easy now for those who have witnessed the failm-e in a 
mercantile sense to come forward and profit by the experience of the 
past, and to remedy those defects or errors which rendered the specu- 
lation so ruinous in the first instance ; and probably the first step 
which will be taken when the vessel changes hands, will be to remove 
the paddle engines and alter her rig. For it Avill be seen from the 
foregoing statements that although her sj^eed is increased by the 
application of the paddle and screw engines combined, it is not 
commensm'ate with the expense at which such additional speed is 
acquired. When the paddles alone are employed, a mean speed of 
8 knots is obtained ; and with screw and paddle combined, 14 knots 
imder the most favourable circiunstances ; whereas the vessel will 
make 9 knots per hour with the screw engines alone. 

The saving in one important item of exi3enditiu-e — namely, fuel — 
woidd be so considerable, and the change, if it were effected, would so 

* Whilst this article is passing through the press, we are apprised that tlje 
' Great Eastern' was " knocked down" for 25,000Z., and a new company, of which 
Mr. Thomas Brassey, jun., is the leading director, advertises that it has purchased 
the vessel, and the honds upon her inclusive, for 97,-'350Z. ; this new company 
having been the purchasers of her at auction. A dispute has, however, arisen as 
to who is tlie rightful owner, anotiier bidder having put in a claim to her. 


248 Original Articles. [April, 

obviotisly constitute the difference between a commercial failure and a 
pecuniary success, that it appears hardly necessary for us to enter into 
minute details. It is easy to calculate that with her screw alone at 
work, the 12,000 tons of coals which she carried would nearly suf&ce 
for a 70 days' voyage, but the most striking and at the same time familiar 
mode of exhibiting the enormous advantages which she would thus 
possess over any existing transatlantic paddle boat, will be to compare 
her, under her new conditions, with the ' Persia,' showing the relative 
consiunption of fuel and the carrying capacity of each steamer. 

Witli her paddle engines removed, the ' Great Eastern ' would 
carry about 7,400 tons of measm'ement goods, and 12,000 tons of coal 
(more cargo and less coal in proportion). She would biu-n aboiit 200 
tons of coal per diem, and steam 9 knots per hour. The ' Persia ' 
carries 1,257 tons of measui-ement goods, and 1,700 tons of coal, and, 
bm-ning about 150 tons per day, attains an average speed of 12 knots 
per hour. Thus, if we were to take into consideration the increased 
speed attained by the ' Persia ' over the ' Great Eastern,' we should 
have to take the quasi-consumption of the latter, not at 200, but at 
260 tons per day.* 

Now let us compare the work as it would be performed by the two 
boats, with the coal required by each, and we shall find that, — 

The ' Persia,' carrying 1,257 tons of goods, and consuming 150 
tons coal per day, bui'us 270 lbs. of coal per day for every 
ton of goods carried by her. 
Whilst the ' Great Eastern,' carrying 7,400 tons of goods, and 
consuming 268 tons of coal per day, would only burn 81 lbs. 
of coal per day for every ton of goods carried. 

This comparative statement exhibits in a general manner how great 
is tlie advantage of a screw over a paddle steamer for trading purposes, 
but as far as the ' Great Eastern ' is concerned, we do not hesitate to say 
that with appropriate internal arrangements she could be made to carry 
at least 10,000 tons of measurement goods ; that with the screw alone 
and a suitable rig, she would, in an average state of the weather, attain 
a speed of 10 knots an hour ; whilst with a good wind she would keep 
pace with, if not outstrip, the fastest paddle steamer afloat. A compa- 
rison of the transatlantic mail paddle boats, supported by a subsidy, 
with the screw boats in the same service not so endowed, would further 
confirm the statement of the superior economy of the screw. 

Once more, too, we would repeat that, instead of believing, with 
many, that her designer and builder have exceeded the legitimate 
dimensions of a manageable steam-vessel, we hold that not a few of 

* Tliroughout this paper we have avoided technical details which might be 
obscure to the general reader; but we tliink it right here to say, that in this com- 
parison between the ' Great Eastern,' without paddle engines, and the ' Persia,' 
we have duly considered the difference between an increase of cargo and the 
weight of the engines removed ; also the bearing of the greater size and weight 
of the 'Great Eastern,' in relation to her locomotive power ; the "lively" nature 
of cargo, compared with the dead weight of the engines removed ; and the 
antagonistic action between paddle and screw ; but we have only given our deduc- 
tions in general terms. 

1864.] Samuelson on Steam Navigation. 249 

our readers will live to see steamers of much larger proportions ; and 
most confidently do we predict a brighter futiu'e for the noble vessel 
now lying idle in the river Mersey. 

It has been impossible, in the limited space at oiu' disposal, to give 
even a tolerably i)erfcct sketch of the j^rogress of steam navigation ; 
but in order to afford our readers some idea of the vast mercantile steam 
navy that has been called into existence through the insatiable demands 
of commerce, we may mention that there are at present employed upon 
one great Ocean route alone, namely, from Liverpool and Glasgow to 
the continent of North America, 100,000 tons of steam shipping, all 
created, in addition to vessels that have been lost, since the ' Great 
Western ' was launched ; and that there is furthermore a large fleet of 
additional steamers now in coiu'se of construction. 

But we have thus far si^okcn only of our mercantile steam navy, 
and have said nothing concerning the armaments of our country. 

It is indeed unnecessary that we should do so. That governments 
are slow to move, and that ours did not follow in the wake of the 
merchant service with any great alacrity, is well known to om- readers. 
They are aware also that having once commenced, the Admiralty added 
year by year to our steam fleet ; and we may say without boasting that 
in both services we have outstripped our neighbom-s as completely as 
when wooden walls protected old England. 

But we pass over this portion of the subject without regi*et or 
apology, quite content to leave its treatment to other and abler pens 
than oxn-s. 

We have endeavoured to render as intelligible as it is possible for 
one accustomed rather to building, than to writing about steamers, the 
theme with, which we have been called upon to deal ; and have only to 
remark, in conclusion, that our industry was not originated for warlike 
piu'poses, althovigh it was afterwards thus apj)lied, or we should rather 
say misapplied ; for had the first steam-boat been endowed with life and 
speech, we are sure that her earliest sentences would not have been 
those of anger or defiance, but that she would have proclaimed, as did 
later the Atlantic telegraph, " Glory to God in the highest, on earth 
peace and good-will towards men." 

Note — Much additional and interesting information on tlie subject of Steam 
Navigation will be found in ' Steinitz's History of the Ship ' (Longmans), and 
Captain Claxton's Pamphlet on the ' Great Britain.' We have to acknowledge 
our obligations to John Scott Russell, Esq., to the owners of some of the trans- 
atlantic steamers, to Henry A. Bright, Esq. (Messrs. Gibbs, Bright, and Co., 
owners of the 'Great Britain'), and to many other friends, for valuable informatioii 
supplied to us. 

250 Original Articles. [April, 



By William Turner, M.B., F.R.S.E., SeniorDemonstrator of Anatomy 
iu the University of Edinbiu'gli. 

Or the various crania whicli during the last few years have come under 
the notice of the geologist and anatomist, few, perhaps, have excited 
so much interest as those fragments of two human skulls which, from 
the localities where they were found, have been named the Engis and 
Neanderthal skulls. The lengthened descriptions given of them in the 
recent works of Sir C. Lyell ' On the Antiquity of Man,' and of Professor 
Huxley ' On Man's Place in Nature,' and the light which they have 
been supposed to cast on the solution of the great problem of the 
antiquity of the human race, have caused a large amount of attention 
to be directed to them. Not only have the various circumstances 
connected with their discovery, the geological conditions under which 
they were found, and their association or non-association with various 
animal bones, been carefully noted, but their shape, proportions, and 
general anatomical characters have been minutely studied. 

The Engis Cranium. 

This skull was discovered by the persevering researches of Dr. 
Schmerling in the Engis cave, in the j)rovince of Liege, in Belgium. 
It was found with other fragments of human bones, covered by a layer 
of stalagmite, and along with it were imbedded the bones of various 
extinct animals, as the mammoth, the woolly rhinoceros, and the cave 
bear. Dr. Schmerling regarded it as cotemporaneous with those 
animals, and from independent researches into the geological i"elations 
of the locality, the same opinion has been arrived at by Sir C. Lyell. 

The skull is a fragment, but the vault of the craniiun is preserved. 
It is to all aiij)earance that of an adult male. Mr. Huxley has care- 
fully described and figured it in both the works above referred to, and 
has come to the following conclusions respecting it. That there is 
nothing in its character to give any trustworthy clue to the Eace to 
which it might appertain, for though some of its contours and measure- 
ments agree well with some Australian skiills, yet others agree equally 
well with some European crania ; that there is no mark of degTadation 
about it ; that it is a fair average hinnan skull, which might have be- 
longed to a philosopher, or might have contained the thoughtless 
brains of a savage. 

The skull with which I am going to compare it was sent to the 
Anatomical Museum of the University of Edinburgh some months 
back by Mr. Henry Duckworth, F.Gr.S. It was foimd by him in the 
summer of 1861, when on a visit to St. Acheuil, near Amiens. " It lay 
about six feet from the surface, in a deposit termed by the quarrymen 
tlie ' Decouvcrt ' bed, wliicli deposit appeared like a nan-ow vein or 


Turner on the Fossil Skull Controversy. 


band of marly sand and small flints, dividing, at an angle of say 45", 
the vegetable or brick earth on one side from the black flint deposit 
on the other." As various remains of the Roman and Gallo-lioman 
age have been found in this locality, it is possible that the skull may 
be as old as that period, but there is no evidence that it belonged to 
an earlier time. I^he skull is a fragment, but possesses almost the 
same bones as the Engis cranimu. It is the skull of an adult, and 
from its faintly-marked ridges and supra-orbital processes is either a 
female, or a male whose muscular development was feeble. The bones 
possess no unusual thickness or density, such as one not unfrequently 
sees in the crania of savage nations. They are, however, some- 
what friable, of a pale yellowish-browTi colom', and much deprived of 
their animal matter. Numerous linear excavations due to the action 
of the roots of the plants in the soil are on theii* outer surface.* 
The different regions of the cranium are well proportioned to each 
other, and there are no marks of degradation about it. The strong 
resemblance in external form between this cranium from St. Acheuil 
and the Engis skull at once struck me, and careful comparative 
measiu-ements have confirmed my first impressions. The Engis skull 
is, indeed, somewhat larger, but the proportions between the corre- 
sponding parts of the two crania are closely preserved. f 













Engis . 
St. Acheuil . 








The length of the Engis skull is to its breadth as 100 to 70, that 
of the St. Acheuil cranium as 100 to 71. If my supposition be correct 
that the latter is a female, the diflerence in size may, perhaps, be 
regarded as merely a sexual difference. The St. Acheuil skull is some- 
whtit more convex posteriorly in its upper occipital region ; but, as a 
rule, the contours of the two crania so closely resemble each other, 
that one might almost look upon the one from St. Acheuil as a reduced 
CO]) J of the Engis skull, t 

* The interjjretation of this appearance was made for me by mj friend, Pro- 
fessor RoUeston, of Oxford ; and since my attention was directed to it, I have not 
imfrequently noted a corresponding appearance in bones which have been buried 
at no great distance from the surface. 

t The measurements of the Eugis skull have been taken from a cast supplied 
by Mr. Gregory, of Golden Square, Loudon. 

% A minor structural dift'erence consists in the presence of a small triquetral 
or inter-parietal bone in the St. Acheuil cranium ; but such a bone, although at 
one time supposed to possess, is now known to have no especial value as an index 
of race character. I have, for example, seen it in two Austrahan crania, in a 
Malay, a Hindoo, a North American Indian, a Chilian Indian, a Ceylouese, a 
Scotch, and a French cranium. It cau no longer be regarded as a distinctive 
peculiarity of the Peruvian skull. 

252 Original Articles. [April, 

A question of mucli interest at once suggests itself by this com- 
parison. Are we to regard the occupant of the Belgian cavern as of 
the same race as the dweller on the banks of the Somme ? The geo- 
graphical distance between the two localities is not great, but the 
geological distance as regards time between the cotemporary of the 
mammoth and woolly rhinoceros and the inhabitant of the North of 
France at a period not more remote than the Gallo-Eoman age is, as 
all present evidence indicates, indeed enormous. The answer to the 
above question, then, will doubtless be regulated by the opinion which 
may be entertained of the value of cranial characters, as an element in 
ethnical comparison. Many ethnologists of eminence consider, and 
with much reason, the form of the skull as one of the most important 
tests to be emi^loyed in determining the affinities of races, for the 
crania of individuals of the same race possess a strong general resem- 
blance throughout long periods of time. But whatever opinion may 
be formed of the identity or non-identity as regards race of the two 
individuals to whom these crania belonged, there can, I think, be no 
doubt that, as this skull from St. Acheuil proves, the cranial confor- 
mation, and presumably the cerebral conformation also, of the geolo- 
gically ancient Belgian was in no respect inferior to this inhabitant 
of France during a period in its history not more distant than the 
Gallo-Eoman time. 

The Neanderthal, Skull. 

The circumstances connected with the discovery of this cranium 
have been so well detailed by Dr. Fuhh'ott, Professor Schaaffhausen, 
and Sir C. Lyell, and its anatomical characters have been so carefully 
described and figm-ed by Professor Schaaffhausen, Mr. Busk, and Mr. 
Huxley, that it is needless for me to enter into any detailed descrip- 
tion of them, more especially since Professor King has already placed 
mauy of the most important fxcts connected with it before the readers 
of this Journal in the number for January. My object will be suffi- 
ciently carried out if I especially discuss those featm*es in its struc- 
ture which either are, or are supposed to be, its peculiar character- 
istics, and which are considered to distinguish it from all other known 
human crania. 

The skull, when looked at even by one not skilled in human ana- 
tomy, is seen to possess remarkable features. The flattened vertex, 
the low retreating forehead and strongly projecting supra-orbital 
ridges, at once attract attention, and show that it is an exceptional 
form of human cranium. To these more obvious characters Mr. 
Huxley has added yet another, in the shape of the occipital region, 
which he looks upon as even more striking to the anatomical eye. 

The consideration of these peculiarities, together with some others 
of minor importance, has led Professor King to look upon the being 
to whom this cranium belonged as specifically, nay more, as generi- 
cally, distinct from man. But in coming to this conclusion, that 
observer appears to me to have estimated far too lightly the amount 
of variation to which the hiunan body is subject, in the structure and 
arrangement of its constituent parts. I allude not merely to diverg- 

1864.] Turner on the Fossil Skull Controversy. 253 

cnccs in the conformation of corresponding parts of the bodies of men 
of different races, but of individuals of the same race ; variations 
which, though they may be great enough to constitute hirge and im- 
portant individual differences, are still not sufficient to warrant our 
assuming the absence of those characters which are especially and 
distinctively human. I refer not only to those variations in the form 
of the features, the colour of the skin, and the nature of the hair, 
which are discernible on an external examination of the body, but to 
those deeper or internal differences affecting the origin and distribution 
of the blood-vessels, the extent of attachment of the muscles, the 
non-formation in some cases of muscles usually present, and in other 
cases the development of new muscles. Similarly, the bones them- 
selves may exhibit great variations in the size of their ridges and 
processes ; and in some individuals processes may even occm' which do 
not generally enter into the formation of the human skeleton.* All 
these afford illustrations of such a great amoimt of variability as to 
cause the careful human anatomist to hesitate, if an vmusual structure 
or arrangement in a part evidently human were shown him, before he 
ventured to pronounce such structure or arrangement to be an indi- 
cation that the being in whom it occiu'red was either a distinct species 
of man, or a form transitional between man and the lower animals. 

The Neanderthal skull unquestionably possesses a very remarkable 
shape, one which sufficiently distinguishes it fi'om other known crania. 
But we must inquire whether its anatomical characters are altogether 
exceptional. Is it not possible, in carefully examining an extensive 
collection of skulls, such as are presented to the anatomist in a large 
museum or dissecting-room, to find crania closely allied to it in some 
of those featm'es which are regarded as most distinctive ? I have, 
diu'ing the past year, directed much attention to this matter, and have 
examined numerous crania, both of savage and Em-oi^ean nations. 
The points in the Neanderthal skull which I have most closely com- 
pared with other crania, have been — 1st, the projection of the supra- 
orbital ridges and glabella ; 2nd, the receding forehead ; 3rd, the 
shape of the occipital region. 

The suj)ra-orbital ridges in the Neanderthal skull are characterized 
not only by their great projection forward, but by their roimded 
massive form. They extend outwards as far as the external orbital 
processes, and they run into each other across the middle line at the 
prominent glabella. Their extent and projection, as is clearly sho^^-n 
in the figiu-e (from a photograph by Dr. Fuhlrott) in Mr. Huxley's 
work, are due to the excessive development of the fi-ontal sinuses.f 

* It may be suflScient to mention here the occasional development on the 
occipital bone of an additional process called jxxramastoid, and of a process, 
the supra-condyloid, springing fi-om the humerus a short disbmce above the 
inner condyle. An elaborate description of all the dilierent forms which the latter 
process presents in Man and a comparison of their arrangement in certain of the 
Mammalia, as in many Quadrumana, Caruivora, Marsupialia, &c., is given by 
Gruber, in the ' Me'm. de lAcad. Imp. do St. Pe'tersbourg,' vol. viii. 18.59. 

t These sinuses are cavities in the frontal bone due to a want of parallelism 
between the two plates, of which the bone is constructed. They contain air, and 
communicate with the nose. 

254 Original Articles. [April, 

In attempting, however, to form a correct estimate of this projection, 
it is necessary to bear in mind that the absence of the bones of the 
face, more especially of the nasal, malar, and upper jaw bones, tends to 
give a more marked character to it than would probably have been 
the case had they been present. 

Professor Schaaffhausen, in his remarks on this skull, states that in 
the principal European museums there are no crania which can be 
compared with it in the amount of this supra-orbital projection ; 
but he refers to various craniological memoirs, in which cases have 
been recorded of a considerable, though not so great a projection in 
this region, more particularly in the skulls of ancient and modern 
barbarous races. Mr. Huxley also, in his critical account of this 
cranium, alludes to the supra-orbital projection in Australian skulls, 
though this is not unfrequently due to a solid bony growth, the 
frontal sinuses being undeveloped. Mr. Busk has also figured the 
craniiun of a red Indian,* and a skull from Borreby, in Denmark, 
stated to be of the Stone period, in which these ridges project con- 
siderably. In the Ethnological collection in the Anatomical Museum 
of the University of Edinburgh, are also several crania, in which they 
constitute a striking feature. Some of the New Zealand and Tas- 
mania crania, for example, are cases in point. But this character is 
by no means confined, as it appears to have been far too generally 
believed, either to the crania of modern savage races, or to those 
former denizens of these islands and of continental Europe, the men 
of the Stone period, of the age of Iron or of Bronze. It is a character 
which occasionally crops out, as it were, not only in the men, but the 
women even, of the British Islands at the present day, and at times 
attains a prominence which, though not quite equalling, yet is but 
little removed from that in the Neanderthal sktdl. I have now| before 
me three modern British crania, and the cast of a fourth (Fig 1) in the 
Museum of the College of Sm*geons of Edinburgh (No. 34), in which 
it may be studied. In the whole of these skulls, the prominence of 
the glabella and sujira-orbital ridges is most strikingly marked, 
especially in the extent to which they project forward, though none 
of them exhibit so massive a form at the external orbital processes as 
the Neanderthal skull. In two of the crania more particularly (one 
of which is that of an old woman. Fig 2), there is a. deep depression 
at the root of the nose, such as to aU appearance the Neanderthal skull 
possessed when in its perfect state. 

The low retreating forehead is a character which j)resents much 
variety in human crania In the one from the Neander valley it is con- 
siderable ; but as Mr. Huxley has remarked, the supra-orbital projection 
causes the forehead to appear still lower and more retreating than it 
really is. But what the true slojie of the forehead may have been, there 
is now some difficulty in accurately determining, on account of the frag- 
mentary nature of the skull, rendering it difficult to say what was the true 
position of the head. The influence which a change in the position of 
the head exercises on the slope of the forehead, either in adding to or sub- 

* ' Nat. Hist. Review,' vol. i. pi. v. 

t The figures refer to the accorapiinyiiig- plate. 

18G-1.] Turner on the Fossil Skull Controversy. 255 

tracting from it, is illustrated by the dift'erent appearance it presents in 
the ligiu-es of this cranium given by Sir C. Lyell and Mr. Hxixley. I 
have now before me a modern Britisli skull which closely approaches 
it, nay, is rather more flattened in the frontal region on account of 
the very faintly marked condition of the frontal eminences. I may 
refer here also to a fragment of a skull, perhaps that of an old monk, in 
the collection of Christ Church, Oxford (shown me by Professor Eolles- 
ton), and to the cast of the craniiun of Archbishop Dunbar (obiit 1547), 
in the Museum of the Scottish Society of Antiquaries, in both of which 
there is a remarkably flattened and retreating forehead. 

Professor King lays great stress upon the coexistence of the pro- 
jecting supra-orbital ridges and retreating forehead in the Neanderthal 
skull ; more especially with regard to the part of the frontal bone, 
which is intersected by a line drawn at right angles to the glabello- 
occipital line through the infero-anterior angles of the two outer 
orbital processes. I cannot but think that if Professor King, instead 
of selecting for his comjjarison such a recent human skxdl as the one 
he figures in Plate 2, Fig. 5,* had taken a human skull presenting in 
combination a retreating forehead and projecting ridges (such as 
represented in Fig. 1), he would have found that no great diiference 
existed between it and the Neanderthal skidl in the amoimt of frontal 
bone cut oft* by such a line. 

I have already stated that Professor Huxley attaches much 
importance to the shape of the Neanderthal skull in its occipital 
region. He describes the squamous part of the occijiital bone as 
sloping obliquely upward and forward from the protuberance and 
superior cmwed line, so that when the glabello-occipital line is made 
horizontal, the occipital protuberance occiapies the extreme posterior 
end of the skull, and the lambdoidal suture is situated well on the 
uiJjDer surface of the cranium ; as a result of which the posterior lobe 
of the brain would have been flattened and diminished. 

But if this mode of description be adopted, it must be borne in 
mind that the upward and forward sloj)e is not that of a plane sm-face. 
For the squamous plate of the bone possesses a curved surface with 
the convexity projecting backwards and upwards, though this con- 
vexity is undoubtedly much smaller than the greater majority of 
well-formed crania exhibit. Then again I find, from measui'ements 
of the cast of this skull, that the greatest antero-posterior diameter is 
not included in a line di'awn between the glabella and occijiital pro- 
tuberance, but in a line drawn from the glabella to a point in the 
squamous part of the occiput, about half-an-inch above the protuber- 
ance ; though whether this point may in this individual have been the 
most projecting part of the head posteriorly, it is impossible to say, 
on accoimt of the difiiculty of placing this fi-agment of a skull in its 
natm'al position. 

But to follow out the method which we have hitherto pursued in 
this investigation, let us now, by a comparison of this part of the 
Neanderthal skidl with the corresponding region in other human 

* Jan. No. ' Quarterly Journal of Scieuoc' 

256 Original Articles. [April, 

crania, see what value is to be attached to its configuration as an 
especial character. Messrs. Busk and Huxley have ah'eady shown, 
that in the Danish Borreby skull, and in some Australian crania, 
the occipital region presents a form closely allied to the Neanderthal 
skull itself. Additional evidence of this corresi^ondence is sujjplied 
by the Australian and Tasmanian crania in the Edinbm-gh University 
Anatomical Museum, in one of the former of which the squamous plate 
is nearly flat, and forms almost a right angle with the surface of the 
bone below the curved line. But it is not with these savage races only 
that this comparison can be made. An examination of a considerable 
number of modern British crania has shown me that a large amount of 
variation occurs in them in the form of this region, and in the extent 
of the posterior convexity of the squamous part of the occipital bone. 
And it would be quite possible to ari*ange, from materials to which I 
have access, a series of modern British skulls, in which this variation 
may be traced from a well-marked posterior occipital bulging to a 
configuration of the upper occipital region, closely approaching the 
form of the Neanderthal skull. In the skull-cap represented in Fig. 3, 
the diminished occij)ital convexity is almost equal to that of the 
last-named cranium.* 

Professor Schaaffhausen regards the unusual development of the 
frontal sinuses, supra-orbital ridges, and glabella, as unquestionably 
tyj)ical race-characters, and not as an individual or pathological 
deformity. To accept such a view, however, it would be necessary to 
show that a great projection in the supra-orbital region possesses a 
definite ethnical value. But this, I would submit, is an inconstant 
featm-e, for great variations in the size of these ridges are exhibited 
by the crania of barbarous races, both ancient and modern, in which 
such projections have been seen. The series of New Zealand, 
Australian, and Negro crania, in the Ethnological Collection in the 
Edinburgh University Anatomical Museum, exhibits considerable 
diversities in this respect. Again, in the beautifully illustrated 
' Crania Britannica ' of Messrs. Davies and Thurnham, whilst some of 
the ancient British crania de|)icted present a considerable projection 
above the orbits, in others, again, it is but slightly marked. | And as 
we all know that no great prominence occurs as a rule in the modern 
British skull, yet, as the specimens already alluded to (p. 254) prove, 
an amount of projection may occasionally occur not much inferior to 
that in the Neanderthal skull. 

To attempt, then, to found, as Schaaffhausen has done, a typical 
race-character on so variable a feature, or to build a chief argument 
in favour of the distinct specific, nay even generic, character of a skull, 
as Professor King has done, on a solitary cranium in which such largely- 
developed supra-orbital ridges occur, does not appear to me to be 
warranted by the facts at our disposal. Mere massiveness — the 

* In tlie University Anatomical Museum is the skull (B. 5) of a modern 
patriotic Greek, picked up on the plain between Athens and the Pirasus, in which, 
this coniiguration of the occipital region is most strikingly marked. 

t Oompare, for example, the BuUidon Moor, llley, and Kenuet crania with 
tliose from Middleton Moor, Long Lowe, and Littleton Drew. 

1864.] Turner on the Fossil Simll Controversy. 257 

possession of greater bulk in tliis region in an individual skull — is not 
in itself a feature on wliicli to base any specific distinction. As 
well might we attempt to draw specitic characters from a gi'eater or 
less development of the mastoid processes. To give anything like 
value to such a character, it ought to be shown to be possessed by the 
majority at least of the skulls of a given race Keeping in view, then, 
the amount of variation wliich this projection admits of in the crania 
of known races, and in the absence of any skulls cotemporancous with 
the one from the Neanderthal with which to compare it, we should 
hesitate before expressing an opinion that it is an ethnical rather than 
an individual character. 

Amongst the various speculations wliich have been hazarded, as to 
the nature and mental capabilities of the man to whom this singular 
skull appertained, there is one expressed in the inquiry, " But may 
he not have been an idiot ? " In the absence of any definite in- 
formation, it is alike impossible to prove either that he was an 
idiot or a sane person. I have, however, comi^ared the skull with 
the crania of three idiots, and find not only considerable diversities 
between its form and theirs, but in the form which the idiot cranium 
itself may present. In one of the idiot's skulls the forehead is low and 
retreating, and the supra-orbital ridges are large, but the external 
measurements and internal capacity are so small as to place it amongst 
the microcephali. Now the Neanderthal skull cannot be regarded as 
microcephalic, either in its external measm-ement or internal caj^acity. 
It possesses an extreme length of 8 inches when measured fi-om the 
glabella to the most projecting point of the occiput, and of 7*2 when 
the measurement is taken between the frontal eminences and the cor- 
responding occipital eminences, which latter diameter is of greater 
value than the former as an index of cranial capacity, because it 
eliminates the supra-orbital projection and frontal sinuses. Its greatest 
breadth is 5*9 inches. Its present capacity is 63 cubic inches ; but 
its capacity in the original condition is estimated by Mr. Huxley at 
75 cubic inches, which is the average capacity given by Morton for 
Polynesian and Hottentot skulls. 

Amongst modern Em'opean crania, the average cranial capacity is 
considerably higher than this. Professor Welcker, of Halle,* from 
careful measurements of 30 normal, male, adult German crania, has 
placed the mean capacity at 88"4 cubic inches. But whilst the 
maximum of these crania rose as high as 109 cubic inches, the 
minimum sank as low as 74'4; cubic inches, a capacity scarcely so 
great as the estimate made of the Neanderthal skull ; and the capacity 
of two others was only 78 and 78*6 cubic inches. Again, Professor 
Huschke,']' from the measurements of 21 male German crania, has 
found their average capacity to be 88'17 cubic inches ; but the 
smallest of these skulls was no more than 73*1 cubic inches, which 
is nearly two cubic inches smaller than the Neanderthal skull. Thus 
though the estimated capacity of this cranium is less than the 

* ' Untersuchuugen ueber Wachsthum imd Bau des Menschl. Schaedels,' 1S62, 
p. 35. 

t Schaedel, Hira, iind Seele, 1854, p. 47. 

258 Original Articles. [April, 

European mean, yet modern male German crania have been meastu-ed, 
which closely appi'oach, and even sink below it. The possession of 
strong supra-orbital ridges, a low retreating forehead, and a diminished 
occipital convexity, is not therefore necessarily incompatible with an 
amount of brain space larger than that yielded by some modern Euro- 
pean crania (which such experienced craniologists as Huschke and 
Welcker looked upon as normal), if the space lost in the frontal and 
occipital regions is compensated for by increased growth in another 
direction. And in the Neanderthal skull this compensation appears 
to have been j)rovided in the jiarietal region, which is nearly three- 
tenths of an inch wider than that given by Mr. Busk as the mean 
breadth of the European skull.* But the skull. No. 34, Edinburgh 
College of Surgeons' Museum (Fig. 1), yields us still more striking 
testimony of the occasional co-existence even of enormous cranial 
capacity with projecting supra-orbital ridges, a low forehead, and 
diminished occipital convexity. Its cajDacity is 117 cubic inches, which 
is three cubic inches greater than that of the most capacious skull I can 
find recorded.! And like the Neanderthal, it has its greatest breadth 
close to the squamous suture, and not at the parietal eminences. 
The cast of the skull of King Robert the Bruce also, copies of which 
may be found in many museums, shows that that valiant and sagacious 
monarch had, along with a retreating forehead, a large and capacious 

From the comparison which has thus been instituted, I have no 
hesitation in saying that, although we may not be able to j)roduce 
another skull possessing a combination of all those characters which 
are regarded as so distinctive of the Neanderthal skull, yet the 
examination of an extensive series of crania will show us that these 
characters are closely paralleled, not only in the crania of many 
savage races now existing, but even in those of modern European 

How cautious, tlierefore, ought we to be in generalizing either as 
to the pithecoid affinities or psychical endowments of the man to 
whom it appertained. It is as yet but an isolated specimen ; of its 
history prior to the day of its discovery, we are altogether ignorant ; 
its geological age even is quite uncertain. In coming to any conclu- 
sion, therefore, we have no facts to guide us, save those which are 
furnished by an examination of its structural characters. And what- 
ever marks of degradation these may exhibit, yet they are closely 
paralleled in the crania of some of the men, and women too, now 
living and moving in our midst. 

* ' Med. Times and Gazette,' April 12, 1862. Mr. Busk places the mean 
breadth of European crania at 5*65. 

t Tlie capacity of the largest cranium measured by Welcker was 114 cubic 
inches ; that of the largest measured by Huschke, 109 '75 cubic inches. 

Ouarlerly, Jouv-nal.oF Science N°2 




i;t skulls 

ISGi.l CARPENTEn on Correlation of Physical and Vital Forces. 259 


Part II. (conclusion) : 27*6 Belations of Light and Heat to the Vital 
Forces of Animals. 

By William B. Caepenteu, M.D., F.Pt.S., F.L.S., F.G.S. 

Those of our readers wlio accomi^auied us througli tlic first part of our 
inquiry are aware that it was our object to show, that as Force is 
never lost in the Inorganic World, so Force is never created in the 
Organic ; but that those various operations of Vegetable life which are 
sometimes vaguely attributed to the agency of an occult " Vital Prin- 
ciple," and are referred by more exact thinkers to certain Vital Forces 
inherent in the organism of the Plant, are really sustained by Solar 
Light and Heat. These, we have argued, sujjply to each germ the 
ivhole power by which it builds itself uj), at the expense of the materials 
it draws from the Inorganic Universe, into the complete organism ; 
while the mode in which that power is exerted (generally as Vital 
Force, specially as the determining cause of the form peculiar to each 
type) depends upon the 'germinal capacity' or dii-ective agency in- 
herent in each particular germ. The first stage in this constructive 
operation consists in the production of certain Organic Compounds of 
a piu'ely Chemical natui'e — such as gum, starch, sugar, chlorojihyll, oil, 
and albumen — at the expense of the oxygen, hydrogen, carbon, and 
nitrogen, derived from the Water, Carbonic Acid, and Ammonia of the 
atmosphere ; whilst the second consists in the fui'ther elevation of a 
portion of these organic compoimds to the rank of Organized Tissue pos- 
sessing attributes distinctively Vital. Of the whole amoimt of Organic 
Compoimds generated by the Plant, it is but a com^jaratively small 
part (a) that imdergoes this progressive metamorphosis into living 
tissue. Another small proportion (h) imdergoes a retrograde meta- 
morphosis, by which the original binary components are reproduced ; and 
in this descent of Organic Compoimds to the lower j)lane, the power 
consumed in their elevation is given forth in the form of Heat and 
Organizing Force (as is specially seen in Germination), which help to 
raise the portion a to a higher level. But by far the larger part (c) of 
the Organic Compoimds generated by Plants remains stored up in theii' 
fabric, without undergoing any fiu'ther elevation ; and it is at the 
expense of these, rather than of the actual tissues of Plants, that the 
life of Animals is sustained. 

When, instead of yielding up any portion of its substance for the 
sustenance of Animals, the entire Vegetable organism imdergoes retro- 
grade metamorphosis, it not only gives back to the Inorganic World 
the binary compounds from which it derived its own constituents, but 
in the descent of the several components of its fabric to that simple con- 
dition — whether by ordinary combustion (as in the biu-ning of Coal) or 
by slow decay — it gives out the equivalents of the Light and Heat by 
which they w^ere elevated in the first instance. 

In applying these views to the interpretation of the phenomena of 

260 Original Articles. [April, 

Animal life, we find ourselves, at the commencement of our inquiry, 
on a higher platform (so to speak) than that from which we had to 
ascend in watching the constructive processes of the Plant. For, 
whilst the Plant had first to prepare the pabulum for its developmental 
operations, the Animal has this already provided for it, not only at the 
earliest phase of its development, but during the whole period of its 
existence ; and all its manifestations of Vital activity are dependent upon 
a constant and adequate supply of the same pahulum. The first of these 
manifestations is, as in the Plant, the building-up of the organism by 
the appropriation of material supplied from external sources under the 
directive agency of the germ. The ovinn of the Animal, like the seed 
of the Plant, contains a store of appropriate nutriment previously 
elaborated by the parent ; and this store suffices for the development 
of the embryo, w^ to the period at which it can obtain and digest ali- 
mentary materials for itself. That period occurs, in the different 
tribes of animals, at very dissimilar stages of the entire developmental 
process. In many of the lower classes, the embryo comes forth from 
the egg, and commences its independent existence, in a condition 
which, as compared with the adult form, would be as if a Human 
embryo were to be thrown upon the world to obtain its own subsist- 
ence only a few weeks after conception ; and its whole subsequent 
growth and development takes place at the expense of the nutriment 
which it ingests for itself. We have examples of this in the class of 
Insects, many of which come forth from the egg in the state of ex- 
tremely simple and minute worms, having scarcely any power of move- 
ment, but an extraordinary voracity. The eggs having been deposited 
in situations fitted to aflbrd an ample supply of appropriate nutriment 
(those of the Flesh-fly, for example, being laid in carcases, and those 
of the Cabbage-Butterfly upon a cabbage-leaf), each larva on its emer- 
sion is as well provided with alimentary material as if it had been 
fm-nished with a large supi3lemental yolk of its own ; and by availing 
itself of this, it speedily grows to many hundred or even many thou- 
sand times its original size, without making any considerable advance 
in development. But having thus laid up in its tissues a large addi- 
tional store of material, it passes into a state which, so far as the ex- 
ternal manifestations of life are concerned, is one of torpor, but which 
is really one of great developmental activity : for it is during the pupa 
state that those new parts are evolved, which are characteristic of the 
perfect Insect, and of which scarcely a trace was discoverable in the 
larva ; so that the assumption of this state may be likened in many 
respects to a re-entrance of the larva into the ovum. On its termiua- 
tion, the Imago or perfect Insect comes forth comjjlete in all its 
parts, and soon manifests the locomotive and sensorial powers by which 
it is specially distinguished, and of which the extraordinary predomi- 
nance seems to justify our regarding Insects as the types of piu-ely 
Animal life. There are some Insects whose Imago-life has but a very 
short duration, the performance of the generative act being apparently 
the only object of this state of their existence : and such for the most 
part take no food whatever after their final emersion, their vital acti- 
vity being maintained, for the short period it endures, by the material 

18G1.] Carpenter on Correlation of Physical and Vital Furces. 201 

assimilated during their larva state,* But tlioso whose period of 
activity is iirolouged, and upon whose energy there are extraordinary 
demands, are scarcely less voracious in their imago than in their larva- 
condition ; the food they consume not being applied to the increase of 
their bodies, which grow very little after the assumption of the imago- 
state, but chiefly to their maintenance ; no inconsiderable portion of it, 
however, being appropriated in tlie female to the prcxlnction of ova, 
the entire mass of which deposited by a single individual is sometimes 
enormous. That the performance of the generative act involves not 
merely a consumption of material, but a special cxpenditm-e of f(n-ce, 
appears from a fact to be presently stated, corresponding to that 
already noticed in regard to Plants. 

Now if we look for the source of the various forms of Vital force, 
— which may be distinguished as constructive, sensori-motor, and 
generative, — that are manifested in the different stages of the life of an 
Insect, we find them to lie, on the erne hand, in the Heat with which 
the organism is supplied from external som*ces, and, on the other, in 
the Food provided for it. The agency of Heat, as the moving power 
of the constructive operations, is even mere distinctly shown in the 
development of the larva within the egg, and in the development of 
the imago within its pupa-case, than it is in the germinating seed ; 
the rate of each of these processes being strictly regulated by the 
temperature to which the organism is subjected. Thus ova which are 
ordinarily not hatched until the leaves suitable for the food of their 
larvfe have been put forth, may be made, by ai-tificial heat, to produce 
a brood in the winter ; whilst on the other hand, if they be kejit at a 
low temperature, their hatching may be retarded almost indefinitely 
without the destruction of their vitality. The same is true of the pupa- 
state ; and it is remarkable that dm-ing the latter part of that state, in 
which the developmental process goes on wdth extraordinary rapidity, 
there is in certain Insects a special j)rovision for an elevation of the 
temperature of the embryo by a process resembling incubation. 
Whether, in addition to the heat imparted from without, there is any 
addition of force developed within (as in the germinating seed) by the 
return of a part of the organic constituents of the food to the condition 
of binary compounds, cannot at present be stated with confidence : the 
probability is, however, that such a retrograde metamorphosis does 
take place, adequate evidence of its occm*rence dm-ing the incubation 
of the Bird's egg being afforded by the liberation of carbonic acid, 
which is there found to be an essential condition of the developmental 
process.^ — During the larva-state there is very little power of main- 
taining an independent temperature, so that the sustenance of Vital 
Activity is still mainly due to the heat supplied from without. But 
in the active state of the perfect Insect there is a production of heat 

* It is not a little curious that in the tribe of Boiifera, or Wheel-animalcules, 
all the males yet discovered are entirely destitute of digestive apparatus, and 
are thus incapable of taking any food whatever ; so tliat not only the whole of 
their development within the egg, but the whole of tlieir active life after their 
emersion from it, is carried on at the expense of the store of yolk provided by the 

VOL. I. T 

262 Original Articles. [^pi'i^ 

quite comparable to that of warm-blooded animals ; and tbis is effected 
by tbe retrograde metamorphosis of certain organic constituents of the 
food, of which we find the expression in the exhalation of carbonic 
acid and water. Thus the food of Animals becomes an internal 
som'ce of heat, which may render them independent of external 
temperatm-e. — Fui'ther, a like retrograde metamori)hosis of certain 
constituents of the food is the source of that sensori-motor power which 
is the peculiar characteristic of the Animal organism ; for on the one 
hand the demand for food, on the other the amount of metamorphosis 
indicated by the quantity of carbonic acid exhaled, bear a very close 
relation to the quantity of that power which is put forth. This 
relation is peculiarly manifest in Insects, since their conditions of 
activity and repose present a greater contrast in their respective rates 
of metamorphosis, than do those of any other animals. — Of the exercise 
of generative force we have no similar measure ; but that it is only a 
special modification of ordinary vital activity appears from this 
circumstance, that the life of those Insects which ordinarily die very 
soon after sexual congress and the dejjosition of the ova, may be con- 
siderably prolonged if the sexes be kept apart so that congress cannot 
take place. Moreover, it has been shown by recent inquiries into the 
Agamic reproduction of Insects and other animals, that the process of 
Generation differs far less from those Keproductive acts which must 
be referred to the category of the ordinary Nutritive processes, than 
had been previously supposed. 

Thus, then, we find that in the Animal organism the demand for 
food has reference not merely to its use as a material for the con- 
struction of the fabric; food serves also as a generator oi force; and 
this force may be of various kinds, — Heat and Motor-power being the 
principal but by no means the only modes under which it manifests 
itself. We shall now inquire what there is peculiar in the som-ces of 
the Vital Force which animates the organisms of the higher animals at 
different stages of Life. 

That the developmental force which occasions the evolution of the 
germ in the higher Vertebrata is really supplied by the Heat to which 
the ovum is subjected, may be regarded as a fact established beyond 
all question. In Frogs and other Amphibia, which have no special 
means of imparting a high temperature to their eggs, the rate 
of development (which in the early stages can be readily deter- 
mined with great exactness) is entirely governed by the degree of 
warmth to which the ovum is subjected. But in Serpents there is a 
peculiar provision for supplying heat ; the female performing a kind 
of incubation upon her eggs, and generating in her own body a tem- 
perature much above that of the surrounding air.* In Birds, the 
developmental process can only be maintained by the steady apjili- 
cation of external warmth, and this to a degree much higher than that 

* In the Viper the eggs are usually retained within the oviduct until they are 
hatched. In the Python, which recently went through the process of incubation 
in the Zoological Gardens, the eggs were imbedded in the coils of the body ; the 
temperature to which they were subjected (as ascertained by a tliermometer placed 
in the inidst of them) averaging 90"' F., whilst that of the cage averaged GO-' P. 

1804,] Carpenteu on Correlation of Physical and Vital Farces. 2C3 

which is nccdcJ in the case of cold-blooded animals ; and wc may 
notice two results of this ajiplication as very significant of the 
d^aiamical relation between Heat and Developmental Force, — first, 
that the period required for the evolution of the germ into the mature 
embryo is nearly constant, each species having a definite period of 
incubation, — and second, that the grade of development attained by 
the embryo before its emersion is relatively much higher than it is in 
cold-blooded Vertebratn, generally ; the only instances in which 
anything like the same stage is attained without a special incubation, 
being those in which (as in the Turtle and Crocodile) the eggs are 
hatched under the influence of a high external tcmj)erature. This 
higher development is attained at the expense of a much greater 
consumption of nutrient material; the store laid up in the " food yolk" 
and " albinnen " of the Bird's egg being many times greater in propor- 
tion to the size of the animal which laid it, than that contained in the 
whole egg of a Frog or a Fish. There is evidence in that liberation 
of carbonic acid which has been ascertained to go on in the egg (as 
in the germinating seed) dui'ing the whole of the developmental 
process, that the return of a portion of the organic substances pro- 
vided for the sustenance of the embryo, to the condition of simple 
binary compounds, is an essential condition of the process ; and since 
it can scarcely be supj)osed that the object of this metamorphosis can 
be to furnish heat (an ample supply of that force being afforded by 
the body of the parent), it seems not unlikely that its purpose is to 
supply a force that concurs with the heat received from without in 
maintaining the process of organization. 

The development of the embryo within the body, in the Mam- 
malia, imparts to it a steady temperatm-e equivalent to that of the 
parent itself ; and in all save the implacental Orders of this class, that 
development is carried still further than in Birds, the new-born Mam- 
mal being yet more complete in all its parts, and its size bearing a 
larger proportion to that of its parent, than even in Birds. It is 
doubtless owing in great j)art to the constancy of the temperature to 
which the embryo is subjected, that its rate of development (as shown 
by the fixed term of utero-gestation) is so uniform. The supply of 
organizable material here afforded by the ovum itself is very small, 
and suffices only for the very earliest stage of the constructive process ; 
but a special provision is very soon made for the nutrition of the 
embryo by materials directly supplied by the parent ; and the imbi- 
bition of these takes the place, dui-ing the whole remainder of f(jetal 
life, of the appropriation of the materials supplied in the bird's egg 
by the " food yolk" and " albiunen." To what extent a retrogi-ade 
metamorphosis of nutrient material takes place in the fcetal Mammal, 
we have no precise means of determining ; since the products of that 
metamorphosis are probably for the most part imparted (through the 
placental circulation) to the blood of the mother, and got rid of 
through her excretory apparatus. But sufficient evidence of such a 
metamorphosis is afforded by the presence of m-ea in the anuiiotic 
fluid and of biliary matter in the intestines, to make it probable that 
it takes place not less actively (to say the least) in the fa3tal Mammal 

T 2 

264 Original Articles. [April, 

than it does in t]ie Cliick in ovo. Indeed, it is impossible to study 
the growth of any of the higher organisms, — which not merely con- 
sists in the formation of new parts, but also involves a vast amount 
of interstitial change — without perceiving that in the remodelling 
which is incessantly going on, the parts first formed must be removed 
to make way for those which have to take their place. And such 
removal can scarcely be accomplished without a retrograde metamor- 
phosis, which, as in the numerous cases already referred to, may be 
considered with great probability as setting free constructive force to 
be applied in the production of new tissue. 

If, now, we pass on from the intra-uterine life of the Mammalian 
organism to that period of its existence which intervenes between birth 
and maturity, we see that a temporary provision is made in the acts of 
lactation and nursing for affording both food and warmth to the young 
creature, which is at first incapable of adequately providing itself 
with aliment, or of resisting external cold without fostering aid. And 
we notice that the offspring of Man remains longer dependent upon 
parental care than that of any other Mammal, in accordance with the 
higher grade of development to be ultimately attained. But when the 
period of infancy has passed, the child that is adequately supplied 
with food, and is protected by the clothing which makes up for the 
deficiency of other tegumentary covering, ought to be able to maintain 
its own heat, save in an extremely depressed temperature ; and this it 
does by the metamorphosis of organic substances, partly derived 
from its own fabric, and partly supplied directly by the food, into 
binary compounds. Dm-iug the whole period of gro^vth and develop- 
ment, we find the producing power at its highest point ; the circula- 
tion of blood being more rapid, and the amount of carbonic acid 
generated and thrown off being much greater in proportion to the bulk 
of the body, than at any subsequent period of life. We find, too, in 
the large amount of other excretions, the evidence of a rapid metamor- 
phosis of tissue ; and it can hardly be questioned (if our general doc- 
trines be well founded) that the constructive force that operates in the 
completion of the fabric will be derived in part fi-om the heat so 
largely generated by chemical change, and in part from the descent 
which a portion of the fabric itself is continually making from the 
higher plane of organized tissue to the lower plane of dead matter. 
This high measure of vital activity can only be sustained by an ample 
supply of food ; which thus supplies both material for the construc- 
tion of the organism, and the fo7-ce by whose agency that construction 
is accomplished. How completely dependent the constructive process 
still is upon Heat, is shown by the phenomena of reparation in cold- 
blooded animals ; since not only can the rate at which they take place 
be experimentally shown to bear a direct relation to the temperatm-e 
to which these animals are subjected, but it has been ascertained that 
any extraordinary act of reparation (such as the reproduction of a limb 
in the Salamander) will only be performed under the infliience of a 
tamporature much higher than that required for the maintenance of 
the ordinary vital activity. After the maturity of the organism has 
been attained, there is no longer any call for a larger measure of con- 

1864.] Carpenteh on Correlation of Physical and Vital Forces. 265 

sti'uctivc foi'cc than is required for the 'maintenance of its integrity ; 
but there seems evidence that even then the required force lias to be 
sujiplied by a retrogi-adc metamori)hosis of a jiortion of the constituents 
of the food, over and above that which serves to generate Animal 
Heat. For it has been experimentally found that, in the ordinary lifo 
of an adult Mammal, the quantity of food necessary to keep the body 
in its normal condition is nearly twice that which would be required 
to suj^ply the " waste " of the organism, as measured by the total 
amoimt of excreta when food is withheld ; and hence it seems almost 
certain that the descent of a portion of the organic constituents of this 
food to the lower level of simple binary compoimds is a necessary 
condition of the elevation of another portion to the state of living 
organized tissue. 

The conditions of Animal existence, moreover, involve a constant 
expenditure of 3Iotor force through the instrmnentality of the Nervo- 
muscular aj^paratus ; and the exercise of the purely Psychical powers, 
through the instrumentality of the brain, constitutes a fui'ther expen- 
diture of force, even when no bodily exertion is made as its result. 
We have now to consider the conditions under which these forces are 
develoj)ed, and the sources from which they are derived. 

The doctrine at present commonly received among Physiologists 
upon these points may be stated as follows : — The functional activity 
of the nervous and muscular apparatuses involves, as its necessary 
condition, the disintegration of their tissues ; the components of 
which, imiting with the oxygen of the blood, enter into new and 
simpler combinations, which are ultimately eliminated from the body 
by the excretory operations. In such a retrograde metamorphosis of 
tissue, we have two som"ces of the liberation of force ; — first, its 
descent from the condition of living, to that of dead matter, involving 
a liberation of that force which vv-as originally concerned in its organi- 
zation ;* — and second, the further descent of its complex organic com- 
ponents to the lower plane of simjile binary compounds. If we trace 
back these forces to their proximate source, we find both of them in 
the food at the expense of which the Animal organism is constructed ; 
for besides supj^lying the material of the tissues, a portion of that food 
(as already shown) becomes the source, in its retrogi-ade metamor- 
phosis, of the production of the Heat which supplies the constructive 
power, whilst another portion may afford, by a like descent, a yet more 
direct siqiply of organizing force. And thus we find in the action of 
Solar Light and Heat upon Plants — whereby they are enabled not 

* It was by Liebig ('Animal Cliemistry,' 1842,) that the doctrine was first 
distinctly promulgated which had been already more vaguely affirmed by various 
Physiologists, that every production of motion by an Animal involves a pro- 
portional disintegration of muscular substance. But he seems to have regarded 
the motor force produced as the expression only of the vital force by which the 
tissue was previously animated ; and to have looked upon its disintegration by 
oxygenation as simply a consequence of its deatli. The doctrine of the " Corre- 
lation of Forces" being at tliat time undeveloped, he was not prepared to 
recognize a source of Motor power in tlie ulterior chemical changes which the 
substance of the muscle midergoes ; but seems to have regarded them as only 
concerned in the production of Heat. 

266 Original Articles. [April, 

merely to extend themselves almost without limit, but also to accu- 
mulate in their substance a store of Organic Compounds for the con- 
sumption of animals — the ultimate soui'ce not only of the materials 
required by animals for their nutrition, but also of the forces of various 
kinds which these exert. 

Recent investigations have rendered it doubtful, however, whether 
the doctrine that every exertion of the functional power of the nervo- 
muscular apparatus involves the disintegration of a certain equivalent 
amount of tissue, really expresses the whole truth. It has been main- 
tained, on the basis of carefully conducted experiments, in the first 
place, that the amount of work done by an animal may be greater than 
can be accounted for by the ultimate metamorphosis of the azotized 
constituents of its food, their mechanical equivalent being estimated by 
the heat producible by the combustion of the carbon and oxygen which 
they contain ;* and secondly, that whilst there is not a constant re- 
lation (as affirmed by Liebig) between the amount of motor force 
produced and the amount of disintegration of muscular tissue repre- 
sented by the appearance of lu'ea in the urine, such a constant relation 
does exist between the development of motor force and the increase of 
carbonic acid in the expired air, as shows that between these two phe- 
nomena there is a most intimate relationship. f And the concurrence 
of these independent indications seems to justify the inference that 
motor force may be developed, like Heat, by the metamorphosis of con- 
stituents of food which are not converted into living tissue ; — an in- 
ference which so fully harmonizes with the doctrine of the direct 
convertibility of these two forces, now established as one of the sui'est 
results of Physical investigation, as to have in itself no inherent im- 
probability. Of the conditions which determine the generation of 
motor force, on the one hand, from the disintegration of muscular 
tissue, on the other from the metamorphosis of the components of the 
food, nothing definite can at present be stated ; but we seem to have a 
typical example of the former in the parturient action of the Uterus, 
whose muscular substance, built up for this one effort, forthwith 
undergoes a rapid retrograde metamorphosis ; whilst it can scarcely 
be regarded as improbable that the constant activity of the Heart 
and of the Eesi^iratory muscles, which gives them no opportunity of 
I'enovation by rest, is sustained not so much by the continual renewal 
of their substance (of which renewal there is no histological evidence 
whatever) as by a metamorphosis of matters external to themselves, 
supplying a force which is manifested through their instrumentality. 

To sum up : The Life of Man, or of any of the higher Animals, 
essentially consists in the manifestation of Forces of various kinds, of 
which the organism is the instrument ; and these Forces are developed 

* This view has been expressed to the author by two very high authorities, 
Prof. Hehuholtz and Prof. William Thomson, independently of each otlier, as 
an almost necessary inference from the data furnished by the experiments of 
Dr. Joule. 

t On these last points reference is especially made to the recent experiments 
of Dr. Edward Smith. 

1864.] VoELCKER on Milk, and Dairy Arrangements. 2G7 

by the retrograde metamorphosis of the Organic Compoimds generated 
by the instrumentality of the PLant, whcrel)y they ultimately return 
to the simple binary forms (water, carbonic acid, and ammonia,) 
which serve as the essential food of vegetables. Of these Organic 
Compounds, one portion {a) is converted into the substance of the 
living body, by a constructive force which (in so far as it is not sup- 
plied by the direct agency of external heat) is developed by the retro- 
grade metamorphosis of another portion (V) of the food. And whilst 
the ultimate descent of the first-named portion (a) to the simple 
condition from which it was originally drawn, becomes one source of 
the peculiarly Animal powers — the psychical and the motor — exerted 
by the organism, another source of these may be found in a like 
metamorphosis of a fui-ther portion (c ) of the food which has never 
been converted into living tissue. 

Thus, diu'ing the whole Life of the Animal, the organism is restoring 
to the world around both the materials and the forces which it draws 
fi'om it; and after its death this restoration is completed, as in Plants, 
by the final decomposition of its substance. But there is this marked 
contrast between the two kingdoms of Organic nature in their material 
and dynamical relations to the Inorganic world, — that whilst the Vege- 
table is constantly engaged (so to speak) in raising its component 
materials from a lower plane to the higher, by means of the power 
which it draws from the solar rays, the Animal, whilst raising one por- 
tion of these to a still higher level by the descent of another portion 
to a lower, ultimately lets down the whole of what the Plant had 
raised ; in so doing, however, giving back to the universe, in the fonn 
of Heat and Motion, the equivalent of the Light and Heat which the 
Plant had taken from it. 


By Dr. Augustus Voelcker, Consulting Chemist to the Eoyal 
Agricultiu'al Society of England. 

Among the alimentary materials so boimtifully supplied to man, 
there are few that may rank in importance by the side of the fluid 
whose constitution we are about to examine. Distinguished by a just 
combination of flesh-forming and fat-producing elements, with those 
salines which are best adapted for preserving the solution of the solid 
materials ; remarkable for the facility with which the digestive system 
appropriates its nutriment ; time-honoured as the support of helpless 
infancy ; symbolical of mildness and sweetness, its very simplicity 
would seem a claim to its exemption alike from suspicion or inquiry ; 
but, alas ! for the materialism of the age, its value may be repre- 
sented by so many pence, its mildness is perverted by adulteration, 
and the food of babes is too often suggestive of chalk and water, with 
a judicious thickening of brains and treacle. Milk, like everything 
else, being reducible to a question of money, we do not hesitate to 


Original Articles. 


adopt means to ensure, as far as possible, that we obtain our money's 
worth. Professing, as we do, a decided preference for tlie healthy 
and natm-al fluid, over any artificial representation of it, however 
superior in the estimation of the vendor, we call in the aid of 
science, to inform us what we ought to have, even if it gives us, 
at the same time, the miserable satisfaction of knowing that we have 
it not. 

General Composition and Characters of Milk. — Milk is the secre- 
tion derived from the blood supplied to the mammary gland of the 
female animal, of the class mammalia. It is never produced in any 
quantity until after partm*ition ; but dm'ing the latter part of utero- 
gestation it occurs in appreciable amounts, and instances are on record 
where it has been obtained from the gland of an animal previous to 
impregnation. The fluid secreted before parturition, and for some 
time afterwards, is called Colostrum, and contains a number of large 
corpuscules, filled with oil globules, distinguished as the " Colostrum 

Milk is white in colour, opaque, and has an agreeable sweetish 
taste ; the odoiu" is faint, but peculiar. 

Its density is greater than that of water, 
quality, has a specific gravity of about 1030 
Goats' and ewes' milk 1035 to 1042, and asses' milk 1019, compared 
with water at 1000. 

The chemical reaction seems to be in a measm'e dependent upon 
the food, as might reasonably be exj)ected, Carnivora giving milk 
possessing an acid reaction, and Herbivora an alkaline milk. Al- 
though apparently homogeneous, it may be separated into cream 
(which consists of oil globules, formed by thin envelopes of casein 
(cm-d), enclosing the fats of butter), cm'd, or casein, albumen, milk- 
sugar, and mineral matters, consisting chiefly of phosj^hate of lime and 
magnesia, as bone, earth, and salts of potassium and sodium, with 
some oxide of iron. 

Cream — varies in composition, according to the circumstances 
under which it is produced. Four different samples analysed in my 
laboratory yielded the following results : — 

Cows' milk, of good 
human milk 1020 ; 


Butter (pure fatty matters) 



Miueral matters (ash) . 

* Containing nitrogen 





100 00 





100 00 














Cream is lighter than milk, but slightly denser than pure water ; 
consequently it sinks in distilled water. No. 1 was skimmed off after 
standing for 15 hours, and was found to have a specific gravity of 
1-0194 at 62"^ Fahr. The specific gravity of two other samples of 

18G1.] VoELCKER on Millc, and Dahij Arrangements. 2G9 

cream whicli stood 48 hours was 1-0127 at G2^ Fain-., and 1-0120 at 
C2° Falir. Kicli cream, 1 find, has a lower speciiic gravity than tliin 
cream mixed with a good deal of milk, such as the sample analysed 
under No. 1. 

No. 2 may be taken as representing the com2)osition of cream of 
average richness. It then contains about one-fourth its weight of 
pure butter. 

These differences in the composition of cream fidly explain the 
variable quantities of butter which are produced by a given bulk of 

On an average, one quart of good cream yields from 13 to 15 oimces 
of commercial butter. When very rich in fat, it will yield rather 
more. Thus Mr. Horsfall states that a quart of cream yielded 1 lb. of 
butter when the cows were at grass, and 22 to 24 ounces when they 
were housed and fed on rape-cake, bran, and other substances rich in 

The portions of cream which first rise, are thin, but rich in fat ; 
this is due to the ruptiu-e of some of the oil globules during the milk- 
ing, and subsequent agitation to which milk is exposed ; the light 
fatty contents thus liberated natui'ally rise quickly to the top of the 
vessel in which the milk is set. 

Good and poor milk differ mainly in the proportion of cream 
present ; the appearance may not be much varied, except in extreme 
cases ; consequently, for the determination of the quality, more 
reliable tests are required than the mere inspection of the fluid ; and 
as a preparatory step to the consideration of the evidences afforded by 
the specific gravity under various conditions, a few observations 
may be offered upon the microscopic examination of milk in health 
and disease.* 

Microscopic Examination of Milk in Health and Disease, — It must be 
some consolation to those who delight in miserable anticipations of 
dreadful mixtm-es in their daily food, to know that we possess a 
method of detecting, with absolute certainty, those combinations of 
" brains, chalk, and starch," a haunting suspicion of which makes the 
morning and evening meal distasteful. 

Without i^ositively asserting that such adulterations never exist, 
we may aver that we have never met with an instance. Foreign 
matters, of a nature imsavoiu-y enough, and even imwholesome, we 
sometimes find, but they are the consequences of a diseased condition, 
or of an absence of common cleanliness. Such things as particles of 
dirt, from the milker's hands or the cow's udder, and cuticular scales 
from the same sources, are common enough. Globules of pus and 
blood discs are also foimd less frequently, but still oftener than we 
like to believe. It will not be thought that the microscope should be 
the companion to the breakfast-table : but in all cases where there is 
the least cause for suspicion, its revelations are infallible, and set at 
rest the doubt that is worse than certainty. 

* The substance of the remarks on the microscopic appearance and the illustra- 
t. 3ns have beea kindly contributed by my friend and former colleague. Professor 
G. T. Brown. 


Original Articles. 


Good milk, under a tolerably higli power, presents the appearance 
seen in our sketcli (Fig. 1). Clustering masses of oil globules, the 
majority of uniform size, may be observed interspersed with a few 
larger, and a number of smaller ones, some being no more than fat 
granules of extreme minuteness. As occasional objects we may 
expect a few dirt particles, epithelial scales, or now and then two or 
three hairs. The appearance of the milk globules is so characteristic, 
that adventitious matters are in most cases discovered at once. 


Fig. 1.— Healthy Milk. 

From the number of oil globules collected together we may form 
some idea of the richness of the milk examined ; but the microscope is 
not the best instrument for testing the proportion of oil globules in any 
given specimen, as in even very poor milk they will probably be col- 
lected in some parts of the field in sufficient numbers to lead to an 
erroneous judgment. In our illustration (Fig. 2) is represented a 
drop of milk so diluted with water as to be nearly transparent. The 
oil globules are seen in considerable numbers, although not in such 
masses as we find in the undiluted fluid. In portions of the specimen 
we shoiild find the quantity apparently much increased by the natural 
flow of them to the most dependent part, and at a is an epithelial 
scale, of which occasionally small masses are discovered. 

^. ^ ° O % 



■■%■■■ o 

Fio. 2.— HculLliy Milk Icrgdy diliUcd with Water. 


VoELOKER on Milk, and Dairy Arrangements. 


In the event of pus, or blood, being mingled with the milk, it is 
evident that the gland is diseased ; such elements could liuidly bo 
introduced by accident, and of a certainty would not bo so intention- 
ally. The appearance of the pus globule is very marked, as will be 
seen by reference to oiu" drawing (Fig. 3, a). The faint outline, com- 
pared with the well-marked boundary of the oil globule, with the 
granular character and greater size, will be sufficiently distinctive ; 
further evidence may be obtained by the addition of a small quantity 
of acetic acid, under whose action the nuclei of the pus cells soon 
become ai)parent, as at b and c, while the cell wall is gradually dis- 


Fig 3.— Milk with Pus. 


The detection of blood discs is not so easy, for although they 
are essentially different from milk globules, their shape is materially 
altered by combination with the milk, ^vhich causes them to swell up 
and lose their peculiar dark centre. After the specimen, however, has 
been allowed to dry on the glass, the characteristic appearance is 
restored, and the blood discs are then very easily recognized. 

The last Figui-e (4) represents blood discs in the milk, after being 

C o 

qo'%%o8o^c^^S Co 



Fig. 4.— Milk with BlooJ. 

272 Original Articles, [April, 

allowed to remain for some liours on tlie glass. At a there are five 
of them, and others will be seen among the milk globules. Some of 
the blood discs have assumed a stellate form, but the dark centre is 
eq[ually apparent in each. 

On the subject of the Adulteration of Milk, and the means of Detection, 
nearly every writer mentions a number of materials said to be used 
in London, and other large towns, for the purpose of so improving the 
colour and consistency of milk that the water added to increase the 
bulk may not be so readily discovered. Whatever skill the milkman 
of the olden time may have possessed in this department of his trade, 
it seems to us that he of the present day is deficient in the modesty 
which afiiicted his predecessor. We find now, at any rate, the 
" cerulean fluid " pom'ed lanblushingly into oxu" jugs without an eifort 
to disguise the sophistication, which, however harmless, not the less 
defrauds us of om* due percentage of the coveted cream. So honestly, 
indeed, is the practice indulged in that we know more than one dairy- 
man of tender conscience who professes to supply milk of undoubted 
quality for the consumption of invalids and babies, while the robust 
are treated to an attenuation of the most unsubstantial kind. 

The prevalent system of adulteration, we are convinced, consists 
in the admixture of water. Where the demand at certain seasons par- 
ticularly exceeds the supply, the cow with the iron tail never fails 
to meet all demands however^ unreasonable, and doubtless deserves 
the reputation, so long ago acquired, of being the milkman's best 

Besides the intentional dilution of milk, there is a natural dilution 
dependent upon the derangement of the secretive function by the food, 
as is the case when such matters are supplied as distillery waste, 
bran mashes, grass from irrigated meadows, mangold tops, and acid 
slops, obtained by allowing barley meal, cabbage leaves, and other 
vegetable matters mixed with a great deal of water to pass through 
the lactic acid fermentation. The effect of such food is to induce the 
secretion of a large amount of water, and thus of necessity a poor 
quality of milk. 

Whether the dilution of milk be intentional, or the result of 
certain influences acting upon the system, is to the consumer a matter 
of secondary importance, the great question being with him whether 
the milk is of good or bad quality. • 

My own experience leads me to conclude that a specimen of milk 
is rich when it contains 12 per cent, of solid matters, and about 3 
per cent, of pure fat ; anything above this is of extra rich quality. 

Good average milk contains 10 to 11 per cent, of dry matter, and 
about 2i per cent, of pure fat. It yields 9 to 10 per cent, of cream. 

Poor milk, whether naturally or artificially diluted, contains 90 
per cent, of water, and less than 2 per cent, of piu-e fat, anfl yields 
only 4 to 8 per cent, of cream. 

For the purpose of determining the quality of milk, numerous 
instruments have been at various times invented ; some of them are of 
doubtful utility, and nearly all require great tact on the part of the 


VoELCKEK on 31111; and Dairy Arrangements. 


Hydrometers, or lactometers, specially afljnsted for testing milk, 
may bo obtained at a cheap rate at the philosophical instrument 
makers, and although not capable of furnishing evidence of so exact 
a nature as would be obtained by analysis, these are, nevertheless, very 
much more useful indicators than anyone would be inclined to believe, 
who did not know how far the specific gravity of milk is a test of its 

The lactometer was never intended to indicate the relative 
richness of good samples of milk, but to point out whether samples 
of a fair or doubtful appearance had been watered, or were of a 
naturally defective composition; and this purpose it satisfactorily 

Experiments were instituted in my laboratory for the purpose of 
ascertaining the influence of dilution upon the specific gravity, and 
the quantity of cream thrown up. Water being the standard at 1000 ; 
cream 1012 to 1019, and good milk 1*0320 ; the temperature being 
always G2" Fahr. 

The following results were obtained : — 



of Cream 


in bulk. 

Pure milk at 02" Falir 



„ and 10 per ceut. of water at 62" Fahr. 















Experiments made upon milk after being skimmed gave the 
following : — 



Skim millc 

• . • 


with 10 per cent, water 










From these investigations it appears : — • 

1. That good new milk has a specific gravity of about 1'030. 

2. That skim milk is a little more dense, being about 1-034. 

3. That milk which has a siiecific gravity of 1*025 or less, is 
mixed with water, or naturally very poor. 

4. That when milk is deprived of about 10 per cent, of cream, and 
the original volume is made up by 10 j)er cent, of water, the specific 
gravity of such skimmed and watered milk is about the same as that 
of good new milk ; thie circumstance, however, does not constitute any 
serious objection to the hydrometer, as milk skimmed to that extent 
cannot be mixed with water without becoming so blue and transparent, 
that no instrument would be required to detect the adulteration. 

5. That when unskimmed milk is mixed with only 20 per ceut. of 

274 Original Articles. [Api^ilj 

water, the admixture is indicated at once by tlie specific gravity of 
about 1-025. 

6. That for these reasons the hydrometer or "lactometer" which 
gives the specific gravity of milk is well adaj)ted for detecting the 
admixtui-e of water, or to show an unusually poor quality of the un- 
adulterated milk. 

1. Circumstances affecting the Quality and Quantity of the Millc. — 
The period of the milking at which the sample is taken. Dui'ing 
the process of milking, that which is first drawn off is thin and 
poor, and gives little cream : improving dm-ing the flow — the last 
drawn — the "strippings" — is the richest in quality, yielding better 
cream, and consequently more butter. 

Experiments by Eeiset and Pelligot have established the fact that 
considerably more solid matter and pure fat are contained in the milk 
last drawn from the udder. 

This superior richness of the last-drawn milk has an important 
bearing upon the question of milking machines. The new American 
cow-milking machine fails to strip the udder, according to the imited 
testimony of all who have tried it. Such a fundamental defect must 
militate against its general introduction into England, and has led to 
its disuse in the United States, as I am informed by the secretary of 
one of the most influential State Agricultm'al Societies. 

It has, to my own knowledge, been tried by several excellent 
judges, who remain silent as to its merits, not liking to accept the 
unpleasant office of condemning and declining, as judicious men, to 
bestow undeserved praise. 

2. Distance from the time of Calving. — The first milk, or colostrum, 
is thicker and yellower than ordinary milk, coagulates by heating, and 
contains an unusually large quantity of casein or ciu'd. 

In ten or twelve days from the time of calving, the milk assumes 
its ordinary condition, and the flow then becomes very plentiful ; but 
after a month, or thereabouts, the yield gradually diminishes imtil 
the animal runs dry, usually in about ten months, unless when suc- 
culent and stimulating food is given to excite the continuance of the 
secretion for a longer time. 

3. Season of the Year and Food. — In the spring and early part of 
summer milk is abundant, and of good flavom*. As the season 
advances the supply is diminished, but becomes richer in butter. 
The same quantity of milk which in August scarcely yielded 3 per 
cent, of pure butter and 3 per cent, of curd, in November produced 
4^ per cent, of butter and 3^ per cent, of curd. 

A series of observations, made for the purpose of ascertaining the 
variations in the quality of the milk on the same farm throxighout the 
year, convinced me that the supply of food was chiefly concerned, the 
richness or poverty of the diet being in all cases represented by the 
quality of the milk yielded. 

In November and December the cows had meal-nut oil given to 
them, which is the refuse left after pressing ground kernels of the 
palm-nut. This substance, when of good quality, not too hardly 

18G4.] VoELCKEU on Milk, and Dairy Arrangements. 275 

pressed, is very nutritions and rich in fat,* and was found to exercise 
a decided influence ujion the proportion of butter in the milk. 

Brewers' grains are generally considered to jjossess a peculiarly 
stimulating effect ui)on the formation of the mammary gland. M. 
Strucknian, of Wartbui'g in Germany, in 1855, i^iihlishod some feeding 
experiments, the results of which are of such practical importance as 
to justify an analysis of them here. 

Four good and four bad cows were selected, and the diet included 
brewers' grains, mangolds, oat-straw, and rape-cake. 

" Most milk was produced by 6i lbs. of rapc-cakc, 3G lbs. of 
mangolds, and 25 lbs. of oat-straw daily to each anixiial." 

A reduction of 9-lOths lb. of rape-cake led to a decrease of 6-55 
litres per cow daily ; thus 1 lb. of rape-cake represents an average of 
lilb. of milk. A diminution of 6 lbs. of grains v/as followed by a 
reduction of 6 • 72 litres of milk ; thus 1 lb. of grains appears to have 
produced ^ lb. of milk. 

When 18 lbs. of brewers' grains were replaced by 4^ lbs. of rape- 
cake, the yield of milk was nearly the same ; accordingly, 1 lb. of 
rape-cake was equal to 4 lbs. of grains, in its power of producing milk. 

Rape-cake produced milk richer in butter ; grains, however, pro- 
duced butter of more delicate flavour. 

]jii^'-'ig the experiments, the suj)erior cows were found to be most 
influenced by the changes of food. In the inferior animals the yield 
was tolerably uniform, notwithstanding they were subjected to the 
same dietetic changes. 

4. 3Iorning and Evening Milk. — Popular opinion ascribes to the 
morning's milk a superiority in quality. Observations on this point do 
not sanction the conclusion, but rather tend to establish the conviction 
that the quality of the milk depends upon the food suj^plied some 
hours before the cows are milked. 

If the food during the day has been plentiful and good, and the 
evening's food innutritions and scanty, the evening milk is of suj)erior 
quality to that drawn on the following morning. Should the cows 
get a good supply of rich food in the evening, after having been 
stunted or fed on poor food during the day, the folio-wing morning's 
milk will be of a higher quality than that of the preceding evening. 

Out of thirty-two samjjles of morning and evening milk, I found 
the morning's produce to be richer in fom" cases, and poorer in eight 
cases ; whilst in fom' instances there was no perceptible difference. 

* ComposHion of Palm-nut Kernel-meal, by the Author. 


Fatty matters ..... 

t Albuminous compounds (flesh -forming matters) 

(ium, sugar, and digestible fibre 

Woody fibre (cellulose) .... 
J Mineral matters (ash) .... 

t Containing nitrogen 
J Containing siuul 

No. 1. 

No. 2, 



24' 14 






19 -.58 










276 Original Articles. [April, 

5. Breed and Size of the Animal. — It may be accepted as a fact, 
that animals which indicate a peculiar aptitude to fatten, are not likely 
to be distinguished as milkers ; we do not assume that physiologically 
the two qualifications are incompatible, rather preferring the alter- 
native conclusion that so much attention has been devoted to the 
selection of stock possessing the requisite qualities for feeding, that 
the milking capabilities have been passively ignored by the breeder. 
Pure Shorthorns, as a breed, are commonly objected to on the ground 
of their deficiency in this rcsj)ect, although the circumstances of some 
families of pure bred animals being celebrated for the amount and 
quality of their milk, would seem to indicate that the stigma is too 
indiscriminately afiixed to this breed. 

The Yorkshire cow, essentially a Shorthorn, is the favourite of 
cowkeepers in London and other large towns, surpassing all others in 
the quantity of its yield, although the quality loses by comparison 
with that of smaller breeds. 

If breeders would make it an object to cultivate both the feeding 
and milking qualities, there is nothing in previous experience opposed 
to a successful result. 

Small breeds, or small individuals of large breeds, i;siially give a 
better quality of milk from the same food than large ones. The 
larger animals giving a better return in quantity, and fm-nishing more 
meat for the butcher, are, however, more profitable. 

Where good quality is the main object, Alderneys perhaps will 
give most satisfaction, for they give richer cream than any other breed 
in common use in this country. The small Kerry cow, and the minia- 
ture Breton, produce extremely rich milk in quantity proportioned to 
their size. 

For dairy purposes in cheese districts the Ayrshire are justly cele- 
brated ; indeed they seem to possess more comjaletely than other 
breeds the power of converting the elements of food into cheese and 
butter ; they do not, on the other hand, lay on fat and flesh well. 

A cow of this breed bought by the Duke of AthoU from Mr. Wallace, 
Kirklandholm, j)roduced from April 11, 1860, to April 11, 1861, 
13,456 lbs., or about 1305 gallons of milk, which at 8d. per gallon 
would be worth 43Z. 10s. 

For general dairy purposes Shorthorns are probably the most use- 
ful. The dairy farmer will natm'ally select those that are more dis- 
tinguished for milking qualities than for their tendency to fatten, at 
the same time not losing sight of the latter qualification, which will 
tell when the animals are no longer profitable for his dairy. 

Health, Constitution, and Age might be enlarged upon as circum- 
stances affecting the composition and quality of the milk : their in- 
fluence, however, is too obvious to require more than a passing 

On Dairy Arrangements. 

Aspect. — Our great aim should be to secure a position favom-able 
for the preservation of dryness and uniformity of temperature all the 
year round. The best aspect is one facing the north, although this 

1864.] VoELOKEK on Milk, and Dairy Arrangements. 277 

cannot be considered essential so long as the room can be kept dry, 
well ventilated, and protected by blinds from the direct rays of the 

Construction. — With the intent to secure the coolness which every- 
one knows to be desirable in summer, the dairy is s(jmetimes built at 
a lower level than tlie ground. Undcrgroimd dairies, however, are 
frequently damji ; so that on a clay soil it is better to choose the lesser 
of two evils, and to build on a level with the ground. 

In such localities, it is well to put a drain all round the 

The walls should be thick, and if of stone, lined inside with brick. 
Presimiing the dairy to be a separate structure, the roof should be 
covered with straw, which, being a bad conductor, best ensures a uni- 
form temperature. Stonesfield slates or similar limestone flag-stones, 
or if these cannot be procm-ed, common red tiles should be used in 
preference to black roofing slates, which, being good conductors, be- 
come very hot in suiimier. The floor should be of stone : large flag- 
stones well set in cement apjDcar to me preferable to ornamental or 
common small tiles ; as it is an object to lessen the number of cracks 
in which water may lodge, rendering the floor constantly wet. 

Ventilation. — A great defect in many of the dairies in England is 
the want of proper ventilation. This is a fertile source of dampness, 
so especially detrimental to the preservation of milk. One of the most 
eflfectual and inexpensive means of providing for a renewal of air, is to 
put up a perforated zinc grating 3 or 4 inches broad, which may be 
carried all along the tops of the windows. In addition, a whole 
window made to open and shut may be furnished with perforated gal- 
vanized sheet zinc. 

Recourse may be had to more elaborate appliances ; but the more 
complicated the apparatus the more difficult it will be to keep it in 
working order in the hands of the dairy attendants. 

Temperature. — An equable heat being necessary in winter, it is best 
supplied by hot- water pipes ; since, with a stove or open fire, it will 
be impossible to regidate the degree with sufficient nicety. Too much 
heat favom-s decomposition, and too little is imfavom-able to the rapid 
separation of the cream. 

A temperature not higher than 65° nor lower than 60" Fahr. is 
most conducive to the rising of the milk globules. 

An accurate thermometer should be kept in the dairy ; and on no 
accoimt should the temperature be allowed to fall below 55'\ Atten- 
tion should be directed to the maintenance of a uniform degree of 
60 as far as it is possible under all circumstances. 

Benches of slate or marble are superior to wooden ones ; but 
should economical considerations lead to the selection of wood, it 
should be painted, in order that any milk accidentally spilled may 
be readily removed. Milk easily penetrates a material so porous as 
wood, and is not readily removed. Cold water is quite ineffective, 
and even after the use of hot water, enough milk may remain in 
porous wood to generate an active ferment. 

Milk-pails which are made of bright tin are decidedly better 



Original Articles. 


than wooden ones ; unless great pains are bestowed in scom*ing the 
latter with boiling water, they taint the milk very quickly : tin pails 
can be always kept sweet and bright. 

Pans shoxild be constructed of glass, tinned iron or well-glazed 
earthenware ; all porous materials are objectionable. Zinc pans are 
said to throw up more cream than those of other material ; but zinc 
is readily oxidized, and like brass and tinned copper, however 
unobjectionable when kej)t clean, it may, in the hands of careless dairy- 
maids, furnish enough poison to injm-e the health of the consumer. 
Glass pans are easily kept clean, and well adapted for keeping milk 
and cream in a sweet condition. They are of com-se more liable to 
be broken, and therefore more expensive in the end than tin pans. 

Deep pans are objectionable, as the quicker the cream can be 
made to rise, the sweeter it will be when used for churning, and the 
greater also will be the yield, of butter according to Sennart's 

Some allow the cream to become sour before they remove it ; but, 
although in this state it appears more bulky, and of thicker con- 
sistency, it does not produce so much, nor so good a quality, of butter. 

Shallow vessels are better than deep pans for another reason. If 
the milk is drawn from the cow into a shallow tinned-iron pan, the 
milk is soon reduced from 90° to 60°, and then, in a good dairy may 
be kept from thirty-six to forty-eight hours at a season when, in 
deeper vessels, it would soon tiu-n sour. 

Before the milk is put into pans it shotdd be run through a strain- 
ing-cloth. The aecomj)anying sketch (Figs. 5 and 6) represents a vessel 
made of tinned-iron, with the straining-cloth tied round the spout. 

Tiff, ff. 

Cleanliness. — In no department of human industry is cleanliness 
more emphatically a virtue than in everything connected mth the 
dairy. Too much attention cannot be bestowed upon the room itself, 
as well as upon the pails, pans, and other utensils. 

1864,] VoELOKEii on Milk, and Dairy Arrangements. 279 

Tho injudicious and wasteful employment of water must be depre- 
cated. However convenient a good sujiply undoubtedly is, it must 
not bo forgotten that a damp floor and moist atmospliero are to the 
last degree injiu-ious. Whatever water is used shoiQd be scalding hot, 
and its evaporation assisted by a current of air. All the utensils 
should be washed without delay, instead of being set aside until 
wanted. The dairy-maid should not show her zeal for keeping tho 
dairy clean by splashing water about. Above all, she should prevent 
men or women entering her domain with dirty shoes, or in any way 
bringing dirt into the dairy. 

In wet weather the introduction of dirt may be unavoidable, but it 
may be reduced to a minimum by having a good scraper and rough door- 
mat at the entrance, as well as a pair of wooden shoes, which may be 
easily slipped on and oif, for each man who brings in the milk. 

Anyone who doubts the efficacy of these simple means should 
visit North Brabant, which is justly celebrated for its excellent butter. 
Dairies, which are models for cleanliness, can be seen, not here and 
there, but almost universally throughout the district. It is, we are 
quite aware, difficult to ensiu'e the proper conduct of a dairy with all 
the requisite exactitude, but the trouble is well bestowed, and cleanli- 
ness, like any other vii'tue, is its own reward. 

u 2 

( 280 ) [April, 



The contributions to the transactions of this Society have been, during 
the j)eriod which we are about to chronicle — namely, the months of 
November, December, and January — of an extremely interesting cha- 
racter, and the subject to which the lai'gest amoiuit of new information 
has been added is the physical character of the Sun. 

Let us state by way of preface, however, that at the first meeting 
of the session, November 13, 1863, the business of the meeting com- 
menced with an announcement from the chairman. Dr. Lee, V.P. (who 
presided in the absence of the President, the Astronomer Royal), to 
the effect that an Anglo-French astronomical treaty had been made, 
the contracting parties being M. Le Verrier, the director of the Paris 
Observatory, on the one side, and our own Astronomer Eoyal on the 
other ; the object of which is so to divide the large amount of work 
that is usually exacted from national observatories between the two 
establishments so that, whilst nothing important is omitted, the astro- 
nomical observer shall have some relief at those seasons when the re- 
quirements of science press peculiarly heavy upon him. 

The observations of the Moon, as om- readers are aware, have ever 
been followed at the Greenwich Observatory with unfailing assiduity. 
Whilst that body passes the meridian in the evening, the addition of 
the planetary observations only adds to the labour of the Observatory 
in proportion to the number of observations ; but when the moon is a 
morning observation, the evening observations of the planets add a 
very oi^pressive labour. In order to diminish this oppression on the 
staff, an arrangement of the following kind has been made between the 
directors of the two Observatories : — The Paris Observatory vindertakes 
the planetary observations from full moon to new moon, the Greenwich 
Observatory those from new moon to full moon. The small planets 
are, with some few exceptions, observed only between the hours 10 
and 13, solar time. It is to be hoped that this example will be fol- 
lowed, not only by public Observatories, but by the many private 
establishments which are in the habit of doing good work. A very 
great amount of labour and time is no doubt wasted throi;gh the want 
of combined effort. 

We must, however, for the present pass over the papers read at the 
November meeting, and refer to two by the Rev. W. R. Dawes, at 
those of December and January, on " The Telescopic Appearance of the 
Exterior Envelope of the Sun and of its Spots." 

Solar physics always command a great deal of interest, and the name 

* Our limited space, and still incomplete organization, necessitate the post- 
ponement of articles on tlio Prijccodings of two or three Metropolitan Scientific 

1864.] TJie Royal Astronomical Society. 281 

of Mr. Dawes is so well known in tluit particular field of research that 
any paper from liim on the snlycct is heard with respect. The anther 
commenced by pointing out the danger there was tLat observers, fur- 
nished with the more powerful telescopes now generally in use for 
solar inspection, would consider as neiv discoveries what was really only 
the revelation of superior telescopic power ; but which remained im- 
revealed in the diminished aj)ertures formerly in use. This would be 
more likely the case where new names have been ai)j)lied by a recent 
observer to phenomena long familio,r to others, though previously un- 
named. Mr. Dawes has therefore considered it advisable to describe 
very miniitely appearances which were observed long ago, that the 
new observer should know precisely what has already been seen in 
good insti'uments. Such an explanation was undoubtedly needed, as 
it is calculated to save much anxiety to the unpractised observer. 

With regard to the ' mottled ' appearance cf the solar surf ice, which 
is familiar to every observer, but in the description of which so many, 
and, to our minds, fanciful images have been used, Mr. Dawes makes 
the following remai'ks : — " Examined with a large apertui-e, such as 6 
or 8 inches, it becomes evident that the surface is principally made up 
of luminous masses, imperfectly separated fi'om each other by rows of 
minute dark dots, — the intervals between these dots being extremely 
small, and occujiied by a substance decidedly less luminous than the 
general siu-f ace." . . . " This gives the impression of a division between 
the luminous masses, especially with a comj)aratively low power, which, 
however, when best seen with high j)owers, is found to be never com- 
plete." ..." The masses thus incompletely separated are of almost 
every variety of irregular form ; — the rarest of all, perhaps, being that 
which is conveyed to my mind by Mr. Nasmyth's appellation of ' icilloiv- 
leaves ;' viz. long, narroio, and pointed." * . . . " Indeed the only situ- 
ation in which I have usually noticed them to assume anything like 
that shape, is in the immediate vicinity of considerable spots, on 
their pemimbrce, and frequently projecting beyond it irregularly for a 
email distance on to the iimhra.' 

Mr. Dawes negatives the opinion, held by Sir John Herschel, amongst 
others, and mentioned in his Outlines.^ that the minute dark dots are 
ever in a state of change. He believes, from his own experience, that 
when observers have fancied they detected change, it was due to the 
influence of atmospheric action. There is, however, an exception to 
this state of quietude, " in the immediate vicinity of spots which are 

* At the next meeting of the Society, a letter from Mr. Nasmytb to Sir. 
Hodgson was read, in wbicli the former gentleman made the following remarks 
concerning the " willow leaves " : — 

"The filaments in questi(jn are seen, and appear well defined, at the edges of 
the luminous surface where it overhangs the 'penumbra,' as also in the details of 
the penumbra itself, and most especially are they seen clearly defined in the 
details of 'the bridges,' as I ttrm those bright streaks which are so frequently 
seen stretching across from side to side over the dark spot. So far as I have yet 
had an opportunity of estimating their actual magnitude, their average length 
appears to be about 1,0(:0 miles, the width about 100." 

" There appears no definite or symmetrical arrangement in the manner in 
which they are scattered over tlie surface of the sim ; tliey appear to lie across 
each other in all possible' variety of directions." 

282 Proceedings of Metropolitan Societies. [April, 

either rapidly enlarging or closing. It is under these cirenmstances 
esj)ecially that the liuninous masses are found to become more elongated. 
This is also more remarkably the case when they are preparing for a 
rush across a chasm, and thus forming those luminous bridges which 
so often intersect considerable spots." 

After detailing some more facts connected with the formation of 
these luminous bridges, the author dr-aws attention to the distinction 
between the true or blacker nucleus, and the umh-a. In almost all 
large spots the former is found to occupy some j)ortion of the latter ; 
and the author thinks that the establishment of the fact of the exist- 
ence or absence of such black nucleus is " sufficient to determine, or 
at least to throw much light upon the origin of the sj)ot ; and that 
the origin of those in which the nucleus exists is widely different from 
the origin of those from which it is absent." 

The author's second i^ajier on the same subject, delivered in January, 
was to some extent a recajntulation of the first, after which he proceeded 
to communicate further details concerning the solar sj^ots. 

These he divides into two classes, which he names the profound and 
the superficial ; and thus describes the characteristics of each. 

" The profound. — In this class I should include those which give 
evidence of involving all the visible envelopes, the distui-bance being 
observable through them all, and down to what appears to be the body 
of the sun itself." 

" The superficial spots. — These aj)pear, from the general tenour of 
my observations, to be almost always produced by convulsions of some 
kind in the photosphere itself, or at a small depth below it. But, 
from the extraordinary variety of the effects, I confess that I am not 
prepared to add anything to the suggestions already advanced as to the 
character of those convulsions, or the means by which they may be 

With regard to the probable formation of the profound spots, Mr. 
Dawes arrives at the following conclusions : — 

" An immense volume of some non-inflammable gas, discharged 
with prodigious force from the body of the sun by volcanic or some 
similar agency, bm-sts through the cloudy stratum, rolling back on all 
sides the displaced portion of that stratum, and producing that heaj)ed-up 
appearance at its inner and lighter edge. The black hole produced 
in the stratum by this volcanic eruption forms the nucleus of the spot." 
" Having passed through the cloudy stratum, the evolved gas comes 
within the influence of the heating jiower of the self-luminous penum- 
bral stratum ; and being greatly expanded thereby, its increased volume 
removes a far larger area of this second stratum than of the first ; thus 
laying bare a considerable portion of the upper surface of the cloudy 
stratum, and producing the umbra of the sj)ot. Here, too, the rolling 
back of the removed portion causes a heaped-up and brighter ajipear- 
ance at the inner edge of the penumbra. Being still fm-ther heated, and 
expanded by ajiproaching the jihotosphere, a similar effect is produced 
upon this upper stratum, but to a far greater extent ; and a much 
larger portion of the photosphere is thrown off on all sides, which 
being, as before, rolled back upon the rest, gives the appearance of a 

1864.] Tlie Boyal Astronomical Society. 283 

heaping-up of the luminous masses at the extreme edge of tlic spot." . . 
" Tlio rotary motion of a jjrofound spot may be produced by tlio 
exi^loded gas Laving acquired a whirlwind sort of action, and thus 
carrying round the parts of the different strata affected by it in the 
same direction." 

At the close of the paper Mr. Dawes gives as an addendum some 
extracts from an elaborate paper by Sir William Herschcl, printed in 
volume XCI. of the ' Philosophical Transactions,' in which the observa- 
tions of many years are discussed ; and which seem in many particulars 
to bear out the observations of Mr, Dawes. 

Next to the sun, the moon is perhaps the most interesting body 
to the amateur observer, and we generally have a paper of some kind 
about her at one or more meetings during the session. Mr. Birt did 
not fail with his favom-ite topic at the first meeting, and gave the 
Fellows a i)aper on the Extension of Lunar Nomenclature. Many 
craters still remain on our maps unnamed, whilst there are several that 
have been altogether omitted, and that too on our best lunar maps. 
These latter Mr. Birt has laid down ; whilst to those wanting names 
he has, in conjunction with Dr. Lee, of Hartwell, given designations. 
A list is appended of the spots so named, with their numbers (in 
accordance with those adopted by the Eev. T. W. Webb), together 
with the selenographical longitudes and latitudes of each. 

The moon also fiu-nished the subject of a paper by the Eev. H. C 
Key, entitled " On Certain Depressions on the Moon's Western Limb ;" 
and as the paj^er contains some observations of a novel character, we 
shall treat somewhat more fully of the subject. The author does not 
mean the general depressions on the moon's surface, but as he himself 
expresses it, " of depressions of large area — not of comparatively 
small gullies, lying between elevated ranges, which are constantly to 
be seen projected on the limb, but of vast tracts, the general level of 
which lies very considerably beneath the mean level of the moon's 
surface." Mr. Key took great pains to satisfy himself that the instru- 
ment was in proper adjustment, and that the phenomenon he observed 
was not due to any defect in the telescope. Perhaps the best way of 
showing our readers the extraordinary natui-e of these depressions, will 
be to present them with a copy of the drawing illustrating the paper in 

The circumstances of the discovery are thus related: — "Having 
mounted my new 12-inch glass speculum, I had for some time past 

ys-l Proceedings of Metropolitan Societies. [April, 

been making experiments witli it, in tlie unsilvered state, upon celes- 
tial objects, with the view of ascertaining bow far a diminution of ligbt 
and consequently of tbe evils of irradiation, combined witb a large 
aperture, migbt be of advantage in particular cases. For this purpose, 
on the 20th of September, at about 6 p.m , before the sun had set, I 
turned the telescope upon the moon, then a few hours past her first 
quarter. I had no sooner focussed the telescope (power 120) than I was 
astounded at observing that the limb of the moon was entirely out of 
shape ; that it was, in fact, irregularly polygonal, as if several large 
segments had been cut off the spherical limb — not the terminator," 

Upon obser\aug these remarkable appearances the author wrote to 
his friend, Mr. Webb, who, on examination, at once detected them ; and 
proved their existence beyond a doubt by the use of the wire of the 
micrometer. Subsequently, September 25th, when Mr. Key again ex- 
amined the limb he was only able to trace a very faint appearance of 
a depression. From this circumstance the author is led to believe that 
the maximum visibility of these depressions only lasts for a short 
period ; and that the effect of irradiation would render their detection in 
ordinary instruments extremely difficult. 

Now that this extraordinary phenomenon has been once discovered, 
it is to be hoped that observers will direct their attention to so interest- 
ing a subject, and will provide themselves with instruments calculated 
to exhibit more perfectly the true form of the limb. For this object 
Mr. Key strongly urges the adoption of the plain, in addition to the 
silvered speculum. We should state that the drawing was made from 
memory the following day, and although it but represents roughly the 
positions of the dej)ressions, he does not consider them exaggerated. 
The deepest depression below the sm-face of the moon he estimates at 
about 25 miles. 

A paper, " On the Origin of the apparent Luminous Band lohich, inpar- 
tial Eclipses of the Sun, has been seen to surround the Visible Portion of the 
Moons Limb," was communicated to the Society by G. B. Airy, Astro- 
nomer Royal. The object of this paj^er was " to show, by optical 
investigation, that no refraction can cause a change in the apparent 
brightness of the surface viewed." As the paper was necessarily of a 
purely mathematical character, we shall content ourselves with merely 
giving om" readers its general results. Having arrived, from this 
treatment of the subject, at the conclusion that '• refraction by a lunar 
atmosphere cannot explain the more luminous band which appears to 
suiTOund the moon's limb where it crosses the sun's disc," the author 
goes on to state his opinions on its real oi'igin in very positive terms : 
'' I have no difficulty in explaining to myself the origin of the luminous 
band in question. It is strictly an ocular nervous phenomenon ; not 
properly subjective, but sensational — a mere effect of contrast. I have 
seen it so freqx;ently under circumstances very different from these, 
that I cannot have the smallest doubt on the matter." 

In this jiaper the author entertains views antagonistic to those 
previously expressed by Professor Challis, in a paper contained in the 
'Monthly Notice,' June 12, 1863, and at the meeting in January last 
Professor Challis communicated a paper " On the Calculation of an 

1864.] Tlie Itoyal Astronrmiical Society. 285 

Optical Effect of Atmospheric Refraction,'' which is, in fact, a rei>ly 
to Mr. Airy's. The latter observer, in his argument, assumecl the 
effect of an atmosphere to be analogous to that of a convex lens, and on 
this assumi)tion investigated tlie case mathematically. But Professor 
Challis contends that the coiu'ses of rays passing through a medium 
of variable density, like the atmosphere, cannot be similar to those 
passing through a convex lens ; and that, therefore, in investigating 
the point at issue, respect must be had to the variation of the refractive 
index, in passing from one point of the medium to another. 

The Astronomer Eoyal has also contributed a few remarks on the 
amount of light given by the moon at the greatest stage of the 1863 
June 1 eclipse. As this eclipse, from the cloiidless state of the sky, 
was very generally an object of observation, we give the Astronomer 
Royal's remarks in full : — 

" The state of sky and of atmosphere was exceedingly favoiu-able 
for observation of the lunar eclipse of last night. At the time of 
greatest obscui'ation, I carefully compared the light of the moon with 
that of several neighbouring stars. This I could do with considerable 
accuracy, by observing the objects with the eye unarmed, as my near- 
sightediiess converts every object into a broad luminous disc, and there 
is no essential difference in the appearance of the moon and of a star, 
excepting in the quantity of light. In this manner I found that the 
light of the moon considerably exceeded that of Antares, sensibly 
exceeded that of SjJica, and somewhat exceeded that of a Opjliiuclii, but 
was a very little less than that of a Aquilce. 

" It will be remarked that the moon's centre was 22' distiint from 
the centre of the shadow at the time of conjunction in E.A., so that 
the moon was not very deeply plunged in the umbra. Had the eclipse 
been central, the light would have been much less." 

We have to notice briefly the following papers, communicated at 
the meetings of November, December, and January ; to which our 
limited space prevents oui- making a more lengthened reference : — 

F. Abbott, Esq., communicated some observations on the variable 
star 7] Argus. This same t; Argus has been an object of scrutiny by 
other astronomers, and to whom it has caused some perplexity, and, 
amongst others, by Sir John Herschel, when at the Cape, with an 18- 
inch reflector. On that occasion, Sir John ^vi-ote in the following 
terms : — " No part of this Nebula shows any sign of resolution into 
stars." The form of the Nebula amongst which the star was situated is, 
as our readers are aware, figured in the ' Outlines of Astronomy ' in the 
shape of a dumb-bell, the star appearing of the first magnitude, and 
situated in its most dense part. It now seems that, although the star is 
in the dark space, out of the Nebula, which has altered in form, it only 
appears as a body of the sixth magnitude. These changes, both in 
Nebula and stai", have taken place between 1838, the date of Sir John's 
observations, and last year, when Mr. Abbott examined it. The 
author suggests that the variability of the star might be occasioned by 
the interference of the nebulosity siuTounding it. 

A letter was read from Mr. Higgens, addressed to Admiral Smyth, 

286 Proceedings of Metropolitan Societies. [April, 

in wHch tlie writer forwarded some notes on the two comj^onent stars 
of 95 ner cutis. The instruments used were a 3i-inch acromatic with 
80, and a 4-inch with 115 : both by Cooke of York. Mr. Higgens 
observed these stars in April, May, and August last, and witnessed 
some remarkable changes in their apparent colour. From the fact of 
both stars appearing to change their colour simultaneously, the Astro- 
nomer Koyal thought it implied some possible change in the telescope. 

Capt. Noble, and 0. L. Prince, Esq., communicated their observa- 
tions of Venus at the Inferior Conjunction ; the latter gentleman also 
his observations of the occultation of k Cancri by the Moon, on the 
26th April 1863. 

Sir A. Lang sent some observations made in the Island of St. 
Croix, at the rising of the sun, with a view to determine the Eefrac- 
tion : also, some notes on remarkable sun-sj)ots in 1862-63. 

The elements of the new Minor Planet <@), 10th magTiitude, dis- 
covered by Mr. Watson, Director of the Ann Arbour Observatory, 
were also given. 

An extract from a letter to Mr. De La Eue, from Dr. Winnecke, 
was read, which went to show the probability of the variableness of 
light of some of the feebler stars about the neighbourhood of the Tra- 
pezium in the great Nebula of Orion. 

The translation of a paper by P. A. Hansen, " Calculation of the 
Sun's Parallax from the Lunar Tlieory" was communicated by Mr. Airy. 
The result gave 8."9159 as the Parallax. : 

Eesults of the meridional observations of small Planets, Angelina 
@ and Cybele (@ ; also occultation of stars by the Moon ; and 
Phenomena of Jupiter's satellites ; made at the Eoyal Observatory, 
were given by the Astronomer Eoyal. 

New Elements of Leto @) were commimicated by Dr. Luther, of 

The Elements and Ephemeris of Comet IV, and notes of observa- 
tions of Comet IV and V, 1863, by H. Eomberg, were communicated 
by J. G. Barclay, Esq., at whose observatory they were made. 

Mr. E. J. Stone presented a paper, " On the Motion of the Solar 
System in Space," forming a supplement to one on the same subject 
read by the Astronomer Eoyal, at the meeting, March 11, 1859. 

" On the Eclipses recorded in the Ancient Chinese Historical Work 
called Chun Tseiv," is the title of a paper by the Assistant Secretary, 
J. Williams, Esq. " The Chun Tsew," writes Mr. Williams, " is said 
to be the only work really written by Kung Foo Tze, or, as we call 
him, Confucius ; the other treatises attributed to him having been com- 
piled by his disciples, either dm-ing his lifetime, or, as in the last of 
them, some years after his death. It treats of the history of Le Kwo, 
or Confederated Nations, into which China was divided during the 
during the Chow Dynasty, viz. between 1122 and 255 b. o." 

" The period of this history is from 722 to 479 b. c, being an 
interval of about 242 years, during the latter part of which Confucius 
flourished." ..." The account of each eclipse is but little more than 
a brief mention of its occurrence at a certain time." 

1864.] TIic Chemical Society. 287 

Mr. Williams presents us witli a specimen as follows : — " In the 
fifty-eiglith year of the thirty-second cycle, in the fifty-first year of tho 
Emj)eror King Wang, of the Chow Dynasty, the third year of Yin 
Kung, Prince of Loo, in the spring, the second moon, on the day called 
then Tsze, there was an eclipse of the sun." This date answers to 
720 B. c. 

A complete list of all such eclipses, with the year b. c, and month 
and day answering to the Chinese dates, is added. The days have 
been computed by Ideler's method, but Mr. Williams warns his read- 
ers that they must only be considered as approximate. 

Mr. E. J, Stone presented a Memoir, entitled " Proper 3Iotions of 
the Stars of the Greenwich Seven-year Catalogue o/ 2,022 Stars for 1860, 
Tiot included in the Greenwich Twelve and Six-year Catalogues, deduced 
hy Comparison with the Besiilts of Bradley s Observations, as given in 
BesseFs Fundamenta Astronomice." This Memoii* forms a continua- 
tion to those by Mr. Main.* 

J. R. Hind, Esq., communicated a note, " On the Variable Nebula 
in Taurus ; " in which he records that, on the 12th of December, no 
trace of the Nebula could be seen either by himself or Assistant, 
although the atmosphere was in a most favourable condition for Astro- 
nomical observation. 

M. G. de Pontecoulant communicated a paper " Sur le Coefficient 
de VEquation Parallactique deduit de la Theorie," suggested by some 
notes by IVIi*. Stone and M. Hansen in a former volimie of the " Notices." 
The paper did not present any point of general practical interest. 

At the November meeting, M. Leon Foucault, M. Knowalski, 
M, Winnecke, and Prof. G. P. Bond, were duly elected Associates of 
the Society. With one or two unimportant omissions, we think we 
have here communicated to oiu" readers the pith of the proceedings of 
the Eoyal Astronomical Society. 


Up to the present time, the proceedings of the Chemical Society, 
during this quarter, have been destitute of any especial interest. The 
law of the absorption of mixed gases in water has become an im- 
portant subject of inquiry since Bunsen has proposed absorption as 
a method of analysis. A promising chemist, Mr. W. M. Watts, has 
experimented with mixtures of ammonia and hydrogen, and of sul- 
phm-ous and carbonic acid, principally with the view of testing the 
truth of Dalton's conclusion, that each gas is retained in water by the 
pressure of gas of its own kind ; no other gas -ndth which it may be 
mixed having any permanent influence in this respect. The results 
of Mr. Watts' experiments have led him to the conclusion that the 
proportion of mixed gases absorbed is not in accordance with Dalton's 
simple law. 

* See vols. xix. and xxviii. of the Trausactious of the Society. 

288 Proceedings of Metropolitan Societies. [April, 

A contribution to physiological chemistry, on the vexed question of 
the colouring matter of lu'ine, was communicated by Dr. Thudicum, who 
believes that he has isolated both the pigmentary and odorous princi- 
ples of this secretion. The former body he designates uroclirome, the 
latter, otto of urine. In the absence of any analysis of these bodies, 
and without an exact knowledge of the manner in which they are to be 
obtained, the question, " What is the colouring matter of the renal 
secretion ? " may be still considered open, unless, with Dr. Harley, we 
believe it to have been settled by Scherer. This distinguished chemist 
and physiologist succeeded in isolating a red matter, to which he gave 
the name of uroJicematin, since it presented a close analogy to the 
colouring matter of the blood, by containing an appreciable amount of 
iron. Scherer considered the body to result from this disorganization 
of the blood corpuscles, the waste of which was eliminated from the 
system in this form. This is an ingenious theory, and the question 
deserves further examination. Dr. Thudicum finds the merest trace of 
iron in his urochrome ; but we must wait for a more complete account 
of the author's researches. 

The formation of new bodies, by the abstraction from other bodies 
of certain elements or molecules of elements, and substituting for these 
certain other elements or groups of elements, the resulting compounds 
having well-defined and characteristic individualities ; and further 
than this, the production of natural from artificial substances (like the 
formation of tartaric acid from dibromosuccinic, by Mr. Perkin), by 
successive substitutions, may rank among the greatest triumphs of 
human ingenuity. Perhaps the most prolific parent of artificial bases 
has been Dr. Hoifmann, whose skill in eifecting the transformations is 
only equalled by the lucidity with which he explains them. 

Apropos to a paper on Acetanilide, by Mr. 0. G. Williams, the 
Chemical Society recently heard from Dr. Hoffmann a short account 
of a series of new creations, obtained by. the action of chloroform on 
aniline, and of pentachloride of phosphorus on a mixture of aniline and 
acetanilide — the first of an infinite series of bodies which may be j)ro- 
duced by similar reactions on similarly-constituted substances. The 
names of these new bodies, diphenyl-formyl-diamiue, and diphenyl- 
acyl-diamine, show them to be of interest only to advanced chemists. 
New instances of conversion were brought forward at the same meet- 
ing, malic acid having been converted into malonic, and propionic 
acid into succinic, by Kolbe and by MuUer. 

The question, " What is the best form in which nitrogen and phos- 
phorus can be apjjlied as manure to plants ? " has engaged the attention 
of many minds ; but perhaps the most original experiments made on 
the subject, have been those of M. Ville, recently described to the 
Chemical Society by Dr. Hofimann. M. Ville has, however, come to 
the conclusion that none of the compounds of phosphorus and nitrogen 
answer better than those in common use — phosphoric acid and ammonia. 
It will be of interest to farmers who study chemistry, to learn that 
ethylamine and methylamine seemed to produce no better results than 
their prototype ammonia. 

1864. ] Tlic Chemical Society. 289 

At the meeting on Marcli Srd, a very interesting paper on the non- 
metallic impurities in Kefined C()p[)er, by Mr. Abel, was read. The 
metallic impurities in co])per had been fully treated of in previous 
contributions by the same author. The impurities mentioned in the 
present paper arc Oxygen, Sulphur, and Selenium. Oxygen exists in 
copper in the form of a suboxide of the metal, which is soluble in the 
fused copper. The exact quantitative determination of the oxygen 
was a matter of extreme difficulty, but the process now given by Mr. 
Abel makes it a comparatively simple matter. Pure copper decom- 
poses nitrate of silver, the latter metal being deposited, and a corre- 
sponding amount of nitrate of copper being formed. When, however, 
suboxide of copper is present a subsidiary action takes place, and inso- 
luble basic nitrate of copper is formed. The author, therefore, con- 
verts a known weight of the copper into nitrate by digesting with a 
neutral solution of nitrate of silver, collects and washes the silver and 
basic nitrate of copper on a filter, and subsequently digests with a 
known volume of weak standard sulphuric acid (one part to a hundred 
of water) to dissolve the basic nitrate of copper formed. The propor- 
tion of sulphuric acid neutralized in this operation is ascertained by 
means of a standard solution of carbonate of soda, and the amount of 
oxygen or suboxide of copper is calculated therefrom. In the course 
of these experiments it was noticed that the physical structure of the 
metal afforded some indication of the amount of oxygen. Ingots Which 
exhibited depressions on the upper surface were invariably foimd to 
contain more oxygen than those which wei^e flat. The amount of 
oxygen present in Kapimda copper, we may add, was found to vary 
from -12 to -33 per cent. In Swansea copper in different stages of 
manufacture, Mr. Abel found the amount of oxygen to vary fi-om 0-42 
per cent, in "Dry" Copper, to 0-03 per cent, in "Over poled." "While 
looking for carbon the author found seleniiun in copper, but in an 
excessively minute quantity, 0-003 per cent. It is worth mentioning 
that Mr. Abel could find no evidence of a combination of copper and 
carbon. Sulphur was found in very small quantity, but neither phos- 
phorus nor nitrogen could be detected. Silicon might be present in a 
portion of inclosed slag, but not in combination with the metal. 

At the same meeting a communication on the Synthesis of Leucic 
acid, was made by Dr. Frankland. Leucic acid has been obtained 
by the author synthetically, by the substitution of one atom of oxygen 
in oxalic acid, by two atoms of ethyl. This was effected by acting 
on oxalic ether with zinc ethyl. 

290 Proceedings of Metropolitan Societies. [April, 


Since the Anniversary of last year some very important and interesting 
papers have been contributed to the Proceedings of this Society, most 
of them suggesting new interpretations of known facts, but some also 
referring to phenomena hitherto unknown or, at any rate, never before 
explained. The field over which the researches embodied in these 
various memoirs extends is a wide one, including as it does the follow- 
ing subjects : — (1) Breaks in the Succession of the British Palseozoic 
Strata; (2) Fossil Estherise ; (3) Relation of the Permian Fauna and 
Flora to those of the Carboniferous Period ; (4) Origin of the Parallel 
Roads of Glen Roy ; (5) River-action ; (6) Geology of the West Indian 
Islands ; (7) The Abbeville Jaw and the associated Flint Implements ; 
(8) Geology of the Eastern Archipelago, besides a nmnber of other 
questions, of either more special or merely local interest. 

1. The subject of the Anniversary Address of the President of the 
Society, Professor Ramsay, reminds every geologist how imperfect is 
our knowledge of the rock-formations which constitute the crust of the 
earth, the theme being "Breaks in the Succession of the British 
Palaeozoic Strata." It is, moreover, one upon which no author has 
before written systematically, although many have described particular 
breaks incidentally when treating of other subjects. 

" Breaks in Succession " are defined by Professor Ramsay to be 
" those physical interruptions in stratification marked by the imcon- 
formity of an upper formation to one immediately underlying it, or, 
when such visible imconformity is wanting, by a sudden change in the 
fossils characteristic of the underlying and overlying formations ; " but 
he immediately afterwards introduces a necessary limitation, stating 
that he only applies his argument " to those cases in which the upper 
formation is next in time to that which underlies it, according to our 
present knowledge of the order of succession." Now these breaks are 
as good evidences of the lapse of time as a series of strata would be. 

Before the publication of this address few geologists would have 
admitted the existence of as many as ten physical breaks, as above de- 
fined, in the primary rocks of Britain, yet Professor Ramsay, in a series 
of very lucid arguments, shows the existence of at least that number of 
gaps in our palaeozoic series, and also that they are accompanied (ex- 
cept in one case, where the rocks are almost barren) by " great and 
remarkable changes in the number and nature of the fossils." He also 
discusses the questions arising out of a consideration of this coinci- 
dence, especially the old notion that entire faunas had been suddenly 
destroyed, and the theory of Professor E. Forbes (lately revived in 
another shape by Professor Huxley) respecting the contemporaneity of 
strata ; together with Mr. Darwin's hypothesis of the origin of species, 
of which he appears to be a warm advocate. 

The conclusion to which he arrives respecting the lapse of time 
represented by these breaks is rather startling ; and although no geolo- 
gist is better qualified than Professor Ramsay to judge of the value 
of such gaps, yet one cannot help thinking that he has somewhat 

1864.] The Geological Society. 291 

exaggerated their importance. However, wo give this conclusion in 
his own words : — 

" Believing that the causes that produced physical changes were 
much tlio same in former times as now, both in kind and intensity, 
(speaking generally, when spread over long epochs), then the upheaving, 
contorting and dislocation of the strata, and the vast denudations they un- 
derwent before resuhmergence, generally represent a period of time longer 
than that occupied respectively by the deposition of the formation disturbed, 
or of that lohich overlies it unconformahly . 

" In the present state of our knowledge these tilings cannot be 
proved, but we may strongly suspect them to be probably true, and if 
they are so, then it follows that the periods of time stratigraphically un- 
represented during the Palceozoic epoch ivere much longer than, those of 
ivhichthe various formations of that epoch bear ivitness." 

2, A paper by Professor Eupert Jones on " Fossil Estherice and their 
Distribution " may be viewed as an abstract of, though differing some- 
what in scope from, his " Monograph of the fossil Estherife" published 
by the Palfeontograj)hical Society. It is a very favourable specimen of 
philosophical palfeontology, and shows that the diligent study of an 
apparently small subject may lead to large results. 

Besides the endeavour to fix definitely the ages of the several de- 
posits in which Estherioi occur, by means of the little fossils themselves, 
assisted by conciu'rent testimony drawn from other sources, the chief 
object of the paper is to prove that the fossil Estherice, like their recent 
congeners, inhabited fresh and brackish water. The successful manner 
in which the author manages to dispose of apparently associated marine 
shells is not a little instructive, as it shows the necessity of scrupulously 
exact observations respecting the particular bed in which a fossil is 
foimd, most of these marine shells being shown to occiu* either a little 
above or a little below the Estherioi ; and the same with regard to 
crystals of salt. Even in the case of a Lingida occm-ring in the same 
bed as an Estheria, Professor Jones is at no loss, for he finds that tho 
Lingula " in successive beds appears smaller and smaller in size, mitil 
it is dwarfed and disappearing, when Estheria minuta comes in ; as if 
more and more fresh water invaded the area, unfavourably to the 
Lingukv and ultimately bringing in the Esfheriiv." 

3. The relation of the Permian fauna and flora to those of the Car- 
boniferous period has of late years been fruitful of discussion, most 
geologists being now inclined to regard the Permian as the concluding 
portion of the Carboniferous epoch. 

In a paper on the Lower Carboniferous Brachiopoda of Nova Scotia, 
Mr. Davidson gives an excellent account of the present state of this 
question, and adds many new facts in favom- of the view that the Per- 
mian is not really a group distinct from the Carboniferous. 

Sir R. I. Mm'chison also enters somewhat fully into this question 
in a paper on the Permian rocks of Bohemia ; but, were it not for the 
proverbial affection which every father bears towards his own children, 
it would be difficult to understand why this veteran geologist should 
so strenuously oppose a view w^hich, besides being supported by nearly 
all the geologists and palaeontologists ,who have specially studied the 

292 Proceedings of Metropolitan Societies. [April, 

subject, appears scarcely assailable by arguments drawn from strati- 
grapbical details, but must be decided by means of tbe fossils. 

4. The next paper especially worthy of notice, is that by Mr. 
Jamieson, on the " Origin of the Parallel Roads of Glen Roy," a ques- 
tion which, as everybody knows, has hitherto baffled, more or less, 
every attempt at its solution. 

The view advocated by Mr. Jamieson was suggestively propounded 
by Agassiz many years ago, but has been until now almost ignored. 
According to this theory, the " parallel roads," or terraces, are the 
beaches of glacier-lakes ; and Mr. Jamieson finds that it is the only 
one which will account for all the facts, and which is not inconsistent 
with collateral phenomena. He also brings forward some new facts in 
corroboration of Agassiz's theory, esj)ecially the coincidence between 
the heights of the lines and those of certain " cols " (the latter being, 
strictly speaking, a few feet the lower), and the evidences of glaciers 
having formerly blocked up the mouth of Glen Roy. 

Now, the existence of a glacier-lake depends, firstly, upon that of a 
glacier damming up the mouth of the valley ; and, secondly, upon 
there being no other outlet for the water. 

The following may, therefore, be considered the sequence of events 
described by Mr. Jamieson : — 

Glaciers from the Great Glen, Corry N'Eoin, Glen Treig, &c., 
blocked up the mouths of Glen Roy and Glen Spean, the last-mentioned 
glacier projecting into Glen Roy, and thus cutting off the connection of 
that valley with the " cols" just noticed ; accordingly a glacier-lake was 
formed in Glen Roy, and the beach forming the uppermost line was 
deposited ; the Glen Treig glacier then shrank so as to open out the 
higher col —that of Glen Glaster— thus causing the lowering of the 
level of the water in Glen Roy ; and then the middle terrace, or road, 
was deposited ; the Glen Treig glacier then shi-ank again, imtil it 
withdrew out of Glen Spean, and that valley being now clear, the water 
escaped at Makoul ; then, at about the level of that outlet, the lowest 
terrace was deposited. 

In a similar manner Mr. Jamieson accoimts for the " roads " in 
certain smaller glens ; and he also shows why some of them stop or 
are indistinct at certain points ; and, altogether, his explanations are 
so simple and so natural that the inducement is very great to believe 
t'aat this much-debated question is at last settled. 

5. River-action is illustrated in a most interesting paper, by Mr. 
Fergusson, on " Recent Changes in the Delta of the Ganges," and also 
in another on the Nile, by Dr. Leith Adams. Mr. Fergusson begins 
by enunciating certain principles of river action, the first of which is, 
" all rivers oscillate in curves, whose extent is directly proportionate to 
the quantity of water flowing through the rivers ;" but a certain loose- 
ness in the author's mode of expression renders it necessary to be care- 
ful not to give a too literal interpretation to some of his sentences ; 
for instance, in this particular case, he evidently means to say that 
this principle is true when all other conditions are equal, for shortly 
afterwards ho observes, that the extent or radiiis of the curves {caeteris 
paribus, luiderstood, as before) is " directly proportioned to the slope of 

18G4.] Tlie Geological Society. 293 

tho bed of tho river." After illustrating tlicso propositions, ho next 
discusses tho tendency of rivers flowing in alluvial soils to raise their 
banks, and thus to confine themselves in their beds ; and he explains 
the process by means of which this result is brought about somewhat 
differently from Sir Charles Lyell and other writers, as he calls in the 
aid of " backwaters," or large bodies of still water in the low lands 
beyond the banks of the river, the effect of their existence being that 
the overflowing water of the river is forced to dejiosit its silt as soon 
as it meets them, which is, in the wet season, soon after it leaves the 
river. In the particular case of the Ganges, Mr. Fergusson is doubt- 
less right ; but it is extremely hazardous to generalize from a solitary 
instance. The secidar elevation of deltas, and many other interesting 
subjects, are then treated ; and the author also describes in detail the 
principal changes that have taken place, dui'ing the historic j)eriod, in 
tho delta of the Ganges ; that is to say, the changes in the courses, 
directions, outlets, &c., of the various rivers, the alteration in the slope 
of their beds, and many other phenomena, all showing the magnitude 
of the results brought about by river-action, and the rapidity of the 
changes, as well as the mutual dependence of the difierent rivers of 
the same valley. Indeed, we may consider that in the Valley of the 
Granges there is being played a natiu-al game of chess on a gigantic 
scale ; the valley itself is the chessboard, the rivers are the pieces, 
while the producers of the changes — water and mud — are the players. 
The effect of a move of any particular river in any direction in altering 
the relations of the rest, and the many other ways in which the con- 
nection of the various rivers is shown, together wdth the laws which 
regidate these changes, and river-action generally, are very curious, 
and deserve more attention from the geologist than they have hitherto 

The chief object of Dr. Leith Adams's paper is to prove that the 
Nile has at a comparatively recent period flowed at a much higher 
level than it now does, at any rate north of the second cataract. The 
evidence upon which this conclusion rests consists chiefly of the occur- 
rence of fluviatile shells at high levels. These shells were found in 
beds of alluviiun forming terraces on the banks of the river, and they 
belong, according to Mi". S. P. Woodward, to six species, namely — 
TJnio lithopJiagiis, Cyrena flmninalis, j^theria semilunafa (Nile oysters), 
Iridina Nilotica, Paludina buUmoides, and Hulimus imllus. The first 
species is doubtful, the next four all live in the Nile at the present 
day, and the last i)robably occurs in the neighbourhood. They were 
foimd at all heights, up to at least 120 feet above the highest Nile of 
the present time. 

Dr. Adams gives a sketch of the physical structiu-e of the Nile 
Valley, and notices the collateral evidence in support of his conclusions 
to be derived from the position of ancient temples, tombs, and other 
monuments, striving to prove not only that the Nile above the second 
cataract formerly flowed at a much higher level than it now does, but 
also that the primeeval river was much larger and more rapid than the 
Nile of the present day. 

This paper is certainly an important contribution to the history of 

VOL. I. X 

^ 94 . Proceedings of Metropolitan Societies. [April, 

*lie Nile ; but it should not be forgotten, altliougb it appears to have 
been almost lost sight of, that Russegger discovered fluviatile shells at 
high levels in the Nile Valley more than five-and-twenty years ago. 

6. Much light has been thrown upon the geology of the West Indian 
Islands in two papers (or, rather, two parts of one paper) by Dr. 
Duncan " On the Fossil Corals of the West Indian Islands," and one 
by Mr. J. Carrick Moore " On some Tertiary Shells from Jamaica." 

Many years ago Mr. Carrick Moore suggested that the separation 
of the Caribbean Sea from the Pacific Ocean was not so complete in 
early Tertiary times as it now is, and the chief result of the papers 
just mentioned is that they prove, almost to demonstration, that this 
separation was not complete until long after the commencement of the 
Tertiary period. 

It may be useful to give a synopsis of this argument, as it is an 
extremely good specimen of the manner in which the palaeontologist 
infers the character and the date of changes that have occurred on the 
surface of the earth in geological periods. In most of the West Indian 
Islands certain strata occur containing shells and corals which, at first 
sight, appear (especially the shells) to resemble those now living in the 
Caribbean Sea ; but, when closely examined and compared, they are 
found to be nearly all distinct. Fui'thermore, a careful comparison of 
them with recent fossil species from different localities shows that, 
while many of them resemble or are identical with species found in the 
Miocene beds of Europe, others bear the same relation to forms now 
living in the Pacific Ocean, a very small proportion (especially of 
corals) being allied to, or identical with, Caribbean species. It there- 
fore follows, granting the usual postulates of palasontology, that the 
deposits are approximately of the age of the Miocene beds of Eiu'ope, 
and that, at or about the time when the animals lived, the remains of 
which occur fossil in these strata, there was free communication between 
the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea. 

Dr. Duncan also discusses many other interesting points, such as it 
can easily be understood the determination of no fewer than 76 species 
of fossil corals from such a region would suggest to the mind of a 
palaeontologist ; but it is here quite impossible to do more than di-aw 
attention to his valuable papers. 

7. The Abbeville jaw and the associated flint implements have 
attracted so much attention, and the circumstances attending their dis- 
covery have already been so often explained, that a knowledge of them 
may be fairly assumed in discussing Mr. Prestwich's paper " On the 
• Section at Moulin Quignon, Abbeville, and on the peculiar character 
of some of the flint implements recently discovered there." It is 
absohxtely refreshing to read a pajicr in which the identical pit in 
which the jaw was found is described, but which contains merely a few 
passing allusions to that redoubted relic of, possibly, man's antiq^uity, 
but, much more probably, of his cupidity and deceitfidness. 

The question of the authenticity of the jaw and of certain asso- 
ciated flint implements is as complicated as that of Schleswig-Holstein 
itself, and is still less likely ever to be satisfactorily settled. Even the 
author of this paper, one of our most competent observers, after devoting 

1864. • The Geological Society. 296 

several pages to the endeavom' to i^rove the authenticity of the flint 
implements, appends a i^ostscript to his commimication for the pui'pose 
of stating that ho is now convinced of their fraudulent nature, — an 
ojiinion, by-the-bye, which he originally held. So also Dr. Falconer 
and others have first been advocates of one view, then of the other, 
and sometimes have gone back again to their original opinion. 

Setting aside the jaw and the flint implements, Mr. Prestwich's 
paper has an indej)endent value, on accomit of the lucid discussion it 
contains respecting the mamaer in which the gravels of the Valley of 
the Somme were deposited. The author gives theoretical sections of 
the valley at the time of the formation, and at that of the emergence, 
of the high-level valley-gravels, as well as at the time of the formation 
of the lower-level valley- gravels, and an actual section of the valley at 
the present time ; he thus shows that the high-level gravels are the 
older ; that the valley has been chiefly formed by the river itself, from 
which also and from floating ice the gravels and loess were deposited ; 
and that, whatever difierence of opinion may exist respecting certain 
flint implements, others, the genuineness of which cannot be questioned, 
have been found in situ from time to time dimng the last fifteen years, 
in some of the oldest of the high-level gravels of the ancient Valley of 
the Somme. 

8. The geology of the Eastern Archipelago is illustrated by three 
papers, two of which, namely, " On the Geology and Mineralogy of 
Borneo and the adjacent Islands," by M. de Groot, and " Notes to 
accompany some Fossils from Japan," by Captain Bullock, are merely 
explanatory notes sent with specimens, while the thirds" On some 
Tertiary MoUusca from Moiuit Sela, in the Island of Japan," by Mr. 
H. M. Jenkins, — is a description of some of the specimens referred to 
in the first-named communication. 

As Mr. Jenkins observes, Java has hitherto been a terra incognita 
to the geologist, and it is therefore interesting to have, at last, a definite 
age assigned to some of the Tertiary beds of that island, with the data 
before us upon which the conclusion rests. The author considers the 
fossils he describes to be of late Miocene date, though they have until 
now been considered Eocene, but not upon any very tangible groimds ; 
he also discusses several questions arising out of a consideration of 
these Javan specimens, endeavouring to show that some portion of the 
so-called Nummulitic formation of India is also Miocene, in this view 
being supported by Dr. Duncan in a note on the Scindian fossil corals. 
He also advances the hypothesis, not without a certain amoimt of 
evidence in favour of it, that the Miocene fauna of the middle and 
soiith of Eiu'ope emigTated eastwards into the Indian Ocean. Basing 
his argument upon this view he strives to show that, with a representa- 
tive fauna (on the principle enunciated by Professor E. Forbes), a 
series of Tertiary beds in the east would be newer than their apparant 
equivalents in Eui'ope — a conclusion which is very important if it be 
true, but which at present requires confirmation ; the same may also 
be said of the assertion that a tropical representative of the Pliocene 
formation of Europe could not be distinguished from a late Miocene 

X 2 

296 Proceedings of Metroi^olitan Societies. [April, 

Among the many meritorious papers of less general interest may 
be mentioned the following :— " On the Middle and Upper Lias of 
the Dorsetshire Coast," by Mr. E. C. H. Day ; " On some Ichthyolites 
from New South Wales," by Sir P. G. Egerton ; " On a Hyaena-den 
at Wookcy Hole," by Mr, W. Boyd Dawkins ; " On the Original Na- 
ture and Subsequent Alteration of Mica-schist," by Mr. H. C Sorby ; 
" On a new Species of Dendrerpeton and on the Dermal Coverings of 
certain Carboniferous Reptiles," by Dr. J. W. Dawson ; " On the 
Upper Old Red Sandstone and Upper Devonian Rocks," by Mr. J. W. 
Salter ; " On the Older Rocks of Bavaria and Bohemia," by Sir R. I. 
Murchison ; " On the Skiddaw State Series," by Professor R. Hark- 
ness ; with many others. 

Judging from the number of new Fellows elected dm'ing the past 
year, the society must be in a very flourishing condition. We notice 
the following well-known names among those of the newly-elected 
Fellows : — II Commendatore Devincenzi, Minister of Agricultm'e and 
Commerce of the Kingdom of Italy ; Nicholas Kendall, Esq., M.P., 
Member of the Royal Commission of Mines ; the Rev. Charles 
Kingsley, M.A., Professor- of Modern History in the University of 
Cambridge ; James Fergusson, Esq., F.R.S., author of the History of 
Modern Architectm'e, &c. ; J. F. Iselin, Esq., M.A., Inspector of 
Science-Schools ; E. J. Routh, Esq., M.A., Fellow of St. John's Col- 
lege, Cambridge. 

A Class of foreign correspondents — to include not more than forty 
foreign geologists — has lately been instituted, and the lists of those 
already elected include the names of very many foreigners of note. 


De. Lionel Beale has, dui'ing the past quarter, read before the 
members of this Society a paper of such great interest to physiolo- 
gists, that we feel justified in devoting the chief portion of our 
limited space to an account of its leading features. It will no doubt 
be reported in detail in the ' Quarterly Journal,' devoted to the 
progress of Microscopical Science. 

In continuation of his reports on this and kindred subjects. Dr. 
Beale commimicated a very valuable paper on the Germinal Matter of 
the Blood, with remarks upon the formation of Fibrin. The author 
described all germinal matter as being soft or semifluid, and always of 
the spherical form, unless otherwise distorted by external agency. 
White blood-corpuscles, and the numerous small colourless corpuscles 
which Dr. Beale described in a former paper to the Society, consisting 
principally of living or germinal matter, are of a spherical form. 
In the blood of man and the higher animals, and we may add in the 
fluids of nearly all Invertebrata also, there exist a great number of 
these minute granular particles, of the same general appearance and 
refractive power as the matter of which the white blood-corpuscles are 

18G4.J The Microscopical Society. 207 

composed. It has been shown that both the red and white corpuselcs 
of the blood vaiy very considerably in size ; and Dr. Beale has 
satisfied himself that some, if not all the minute granular i)article8 
described by him, grow into white and red eori)uscle8. He also sees 
no reason why corpuscles may not exist in the blood, of such a size 
as to be actually invisible to the hmnan eye, even when assisted with 
the i)owerful adjunct of a inrth objective. The granular particles 
absorb nutriment from the medium in which they float, and undei'go 
numerous subdivisons, producing other similar gi-anules destined to 
become blood-corjniscles. The motive power which enables the 
gx'anules thus to subdivide, has no connection with the nucleus or 
nuclear matter, but resides solely in the so-called "basis- substance," 
which is the semi-transparent matter forming the mass of the cell. 
This " basis-substance" is not a simple fluid, but consists of very 
minute, colourless particles, free to move upon each other ; and Dr. 
Beale believes this motive-power to be an inherent and peculiar 
property of living matter. In cases of inflammation, as, for instance, 
where the caiiillaries in the foot of the Frog are thus affected, the 
germinal matter is more able to absorb nutrient substance on accoxmt 
of the retarded circulation. Hence it is that white corpuscles are so 
abundant in vessels subjected to inflammatory action, masses of clot 
having been observed, which consist of little else but white 
corpuscles. The author, however, does not consider that this 
development from granules of germinal matter is the only mode in 
which white blood-corpuscles are formed. In the development of 
the blood-vessels, the general ojjinion is that cells become stellate, and 
that the i)rocesses formed by the contiguous cells meet together ; and 
thus, it is conceived, the cavities of the adjacent cells become 
connected together by tubes. Dr. Beale has already contested this 
inference and endeavoured to show that, so far fi'om any coalescence 
between cells taking place, the communicating tubes, which are, of 
coui'se, the incipient blood-vessels, are formed by the sej)aration or 
moving away from each other of " cells" which were originally 
contiguous. The walls of the tubes thus formed contain germinal 
matter, which is supposed to be not unfrequently detached in 
small masses, thus giving rise to small corpuscles of a similar uatm-e 
to that of the white corpuscles. The increase of the production of 
white corpuscles is favom*ed in all conditions in which the access of 
pabulum to these masses of germinal or lining matter is increased. 
In connection with this view of the production of blood-corpuscles, 
Dr. Beale has been led to a theory of the origin of exudations, which 
differs both from that held by those who support the " exudation 
theory," and those who uphold the " cell theory." He considers 
that portions of the granidar bodies in the blood may pass through 
the walls of capillary vessels, and then being surrounded by a 
suitable pabulum, increase and multiply by subdivision, producing 
sometimes clear fluids, at other times viscid, corpusculated masses. 

The question of the coagulation of the blood, which has been so 
much and so variously agitated of late, is also touched upon by the 
author. When discussing the anatomy of the red blood-corpuscles 

298 Proceedings of Metropolitan Societies. [April, 

in a former paper he endeavoured to show that the coloured matter 
bears to the colourless or living germinal matter the same relation as 
formed material in other cases bears to germinal matter. It is formed 
from it, or rather results from changes occurring in it. If the living 
or germinal matter die, slowly and naturally (as when in the circula- 
ting fluid of the body), the red colouring matter is one of the 
substances resulting from its death. Nmnerous facts render it almost 
certain that these and other masses of germinal matter give rise to 
different substances, according to the conditions under which the 
particles cease to exhibit vital phenomena. The production of the 
material we know as librin is due to the death of minute particles of 
the living matter of the white and small colourless corpuscles, which 
takes place, under ordinaiy circumstances, when blood escapes from 
the vessels of the living body ; in fact it is one of the consequences 
of the first decomposition which the blood undergoes after death. 
Such decomposition may occur, under certain circumstances, in the 
body itself. The action of ammonia on the blood, after death, is 
considered by Dr. Beale to be such as to keep the fibrin once pro- 
duced in a state of diffusion throughout the mass ; but he by no means 
considers its presence in the living blood as demonstrated, regarding, 
as he does, the theory he has propounded sufficient to account for the 
phenomena of coagulation without its interpolation. Neither is Dr. 
Beale at all inclined to assent to the views of Professor Lister, whose 
researches he, however, mentions with great deference. The theory 
propounded by that gentleman, that living substances, such as the 
walls of blood-vessels, &c., have not the power of separating fibrin 
from the blood, while external matters of an inanimate nature possess 
that property, is, he observes, unwarranted by oiu* present knowledge, 
such an assertion as to the properties of living and inert bodies being 
as yet unsupported by conclusive proof. At the conclusion of his 
paper Dr. Beale remarked upon the unfaix'ness displayed by those 
engaged in writing reviews upon the works of observers in this 
country — -who, he says, are too wont to dwell upon the observations of 
foreign investigators to the neglect of those of their o^vn countrymen. 

Dr. Lander, of the Royal Navy, has communicated a paper on 
Marine Diatomaceae foimd at Hong-Kong, Avith descriptions of new 
species. The species described belong to the genus Chastoceros — and 
are very abundant in the harbom- of Hong-Kong. Several species are 

Mr. D. E. Goddard has described a new form of moimting-table. 
It consists of a piece of brass 12 inches long and 3 inches broad and 
lith of an inch thick, a large space is pianched out in the centre of the 
usual form of microscope slides. The table is supported by four legs, 
and a spirit-lamp can be placed beneath, thus enabling the operator 
conveniently to moderate the amoimt of heat used. The table is likely 
to be much emjiloyed by those who indulge in such accessory apparatus, 
though it cannot be said to be a necessary or even an important piece 
of mechanism. 

1864.] TU Boyal Society. 299 


The papers read before tlie Eoyal Society during the past quarter have 
been of their usual varied character. They embrace the whole circle 
of the sciences, but the communications to which we shall chiefly allude 
in these pages are those relating to natural and physical science. 
Among these we find one of a very abstract natm-e, " On the Condition, 
Extent, and Eealization of a Perfectly Musical Scale on Instruments 
with Fixed Tones," by Mr. Ellis. It was a very recondite paper, which 
could only be made intelligible to those profoundly acquainted with 
the science of music and by the helj) of extended diagrams. 

Chemists have taken but a small share in the proceedings of the 
Eoyal Society this quarter. Dr. Stenhouse contributed a short paper 
on Eubia munjista or the Madder of the East Indies, in continuation of 
a paper communicated to the Society last year. Among the new facts 
contained in this paper was the analysis of the coloui-iug priuciple of 
East India madder, to which Dr. Stenhouse has given the name of Mun- 
jistine. He found it to be closely allied in composition to the coloui-ing 
matters obtained from Turkey, and Continental madders. Munjistine, 
though existing in larger quantity in Munjeet, than Alizarine in 
the best Naples madder, has imfortunately much less tinctorial power, 
and consequently the value of East India madder as a dye stuif is much 
smaller than that of either Turkey or Naples. From the piu-pm"ine of 
munjeet Dr. Stenhouse has produced a new dye, by dissolving it in 
ammonia, and allowing the solution to rest in a warm place for about 
a month, occasionally replacing the ammonia and water lost by evapo- 
ration. The purpurine disappears, and a new colouring matter is formed 
which dyes immordanted silk and wool of a fine rose colour, but will 
not dye even mordanted vegetable fibre. The author gives the name 
purpureine to this new dye. 

A paper of great scientific interest on the Acids of the Lactic series 
was communicated by Messrs. Frankland and Duppa. 

Terrestrial magnetism now attracts a large share of attention, and 
the results of the observations made will some day lead to important 
consequences. At present we must reckon among the curiosities of 
science, the mysterious connection which seems to exist between the 
magnetism of oiu- earth and the spots on the sun. Dr. Wolf, of 
Zurich, has gone over a table of the magnetic variations observed at 
Greenwich for several years, and compared it with his own observations 
of sun-spots, finding the years which show the greatest magnetic devia- 
tions to have been richest in sim sj)ots. 

The beautiful self-recording magnetographs at Kew have been 
adopted in the Observatory at Lisbon, and Seiihor Capello, of the 
Lisbon, and Mr. Stewart of the Kew, Observatories, now send to the 
Eoyal Society the results of a comparison of certain traces produced 
simultaneously at the two places, during the magnetic distm-bances in 
July last year. It seems that when the Kew and Lisbon cm-ves ai-e 
compared together, a very striking similarity is foimd to exist between 
the horizontal force, one perhaps less striking between the declination 

300 Proceedings of Metropolitan Societies. [April, 

curves, and very little likeness between the vertical-force curves. 
The curves of vertical force are indeed nearly quite dissimilar. The 
peaks and hollows of the Kew curves were generally (simultaneously) 
reproduced at Lisbon, but in an opposite direction, a sudden augmen- 
tation of the vertical force at Kew corresponding to a diminution at 
Lisbon, and vice versa. 

When Captain Maguire was at Point Barrow dmnng the winters 
1852-53 and 1853-54, he made homly observations of the magnetic 
declination. Similar observations were made by Captain (now Sir 
Leopold) M'Clintock, at Port Kennedy, 1,200 miles distant from Point 
Barrow, during the winter 1858-59. The learned President of the 
Koyal Society, who may be considered the parent of this branch of 
science, has compared the results of these two series of observations in 
a paper communicated to the Society. The first point established is 
that the action of any disturbing force on the declination-magnet is 
less at Port Kennedy than at Point Barrow, that is, less at the station 
nearest to the points of 90° dip. The indication accords with the fact 
of the greater frequency of the am'ora at Point Barrow. A remarkable 
correspondence is pointed out between the maxima of easterly and 
westerly deflection observed at the two stations. The maximum of 
easterly deflection occurred at the same hour of absolute time, the 
maximum of westerly at the same hour of local time. At Port Kennedy 
the normal direction of the magnet is 35° east of south : at Point Bar- 
row 41° to the west of north : the contrast at the two stations is there- 
fore nearly as great as can exist in any part of the globe, wanting only 
6° of 180°, or of being diametrically opposite. 

A few anatomical papers have been communicated during the past 
quarter. Mr. R. Lee contributed a paper on the Distribution of the 
Nerves in an Anencephalous Foetus which he dissected, and in which 
he found the. distribution quite normal. Professor Huxley made a com- 
munication on the Osteology of the genus Glyptodon. Mr. J. W. 
Hulke sent a contribution on the Minute Anatomy of the Retina of the 
Amphibia and Reptiles. 

The last consisted of descriptions of the intimate structure of the 
retina of the Frog, Black and Yellow Salamander, Txu'tle, Land and 
Water Tortoises, Spanish Gecko, Blind worm, and Common Snake. 
In all seven layers are recognizable. Reckoning from the outer or 
choroidal surface of the retina these are : the Bacillary, the Layer of 
Outer Granules, the Inter-granular Layer, the Layer of Inner 
Granules, the Granular or Grey-nervous Layer, the Ganglionic Layer, 
and that of the optic nerve-fibres. The elements of the Bacillary 
Layer are remarkable for their large size, they are the bodies known 
as the Rods, and the Cones or Bulbs. There are good grounds for 
believing them to be the percipient elements. They consist of two 
segments, an outer or shaft, and an inner or body, the junction of 
which is marked by a bright transverse line. The shaft is a long 
rectangle in the rods ; smaller and slightly conical in the lines. The 
body is flask or spindle shaped, and mostly smaller than the shaft in 
the Rods ; more decidedly flask-shaped and larger than the shaft in the 
Cones. One of the " Outer Granules " is always associated with the 

1864.J The Boyal Society. 301 

inner end of the body in both Kods and Cones, and may bo regarded 
as an integral part of it; the number of "Outer Granules" con- 
sequently equals that of the Rods and Cones. These " Granules" are 
large circular cells, mostly containing a central nucleus in which they 
difler from the " Inner Granules." A very delicate fibre runs inwards 
from the inner end of the Eod and Cone body, not from the Outer 
Granule enclosed in this, as some think. This Mr. Hulke has traced 
through the intermediate layers to the inner part of the Granular 
Layer in the neighbourhood of the Ganglion cells. The "Inner 
Granules" are roxmd or polygonal cells, more numerous than the 
" Outer Granules." The Ganglion cells are mostly multipolar ; some 
of their processes join those of neighbouring cells, others join the 
bundles of optic nerve-fibres, and a third set bend outwards into the 
Grauidar Layer. In the Frog and Gecko Mr. Hulke has traced optic 
nerve-fibres passing outwards thi-ough Ganglionic into the Granular 
Layer. The author prefers the term Granular to that of Grey- 
nervous for the broad layer which lies between the Ganglionic Layer 
and that of the Inner Granules, as it correctly describes its appearance 
under a low power, and has no respect to the natui-e of the tissue, 
which he regards as connective and not nervous. A high power 
demonstrates a closely-woven web in part derived fi-om the fibres travers- 
ing it in a radial direction discovered by Miiller. The Inter-gianular 
Layer he also regards as a looser web of coarser connective tissue. 
The orderly arrangement of the respective layers and of the cell- 
elements in each is maintained by a framework of connective tissue, 
which consist of a homogeneous membrane bounding the inner 
surface of the retina ; of the system of fibres discovered by Miiller, 
arising from the outer surface of this membrane and traversing all the 
layers in a radial direction to end upoQ the inner siu'face of a 
fenestrated homogeneous membrane, which receives the Eod and line- 
bodies ; and lastly, of a delicate web in connection with these fibres, 
which preserves the disposition of the cells when in the several layers. 
These radial fibres are not looked on by the author as the link between 
the Rods and Cones, the percipient, and the optic nerve-fibres, the 
conducting elements of the retina : the view held by Miiller, KoUiker, 
and some others. The true link he considers to be the fibre passing 
inwards from the imier end of the Rod- and Cone-body, which also has 
a radial direction, but is to be distinguished from Mullers' fibre. 

Another paper of mixed chemical, physiological and optical 
interest was communicated by Professor Stokes. It has been supposed 
that biliverdin, the green colom-ing matter of bile, and chlorophyll, the 
green colom-ing matter of plants, are identical. An oi^tico-chemical 
analysis of these bodies, however, shows them to be perfectly distinct. 
Chlorophyll is a compound body — a mixtm-e of fom- substances— two 
yeUow and two green, aU possessing distinctive optical properties. It is 
extremely difficidt to separate these bodies by chemical means, but 
they may be obtained in approximate state of purity. The phyllo- 
cyanine and phylloxanthine of Fremy, Professor Stokes shows to be 
what we may call products of decomposition. 

A very valuable account of some Experiments made to determine 

302 Proceedings of Metropolitan Societies. [April, 

the effects of impact, yibratoiy action, and a long-continued change 
of load on wrought-iron girders was contributed to the Koyal Society 
by Dr. Fairbairn, The experiments were undertaken in order to 
ascertain the extent to which a bridge or girder of wrought iron may 
be strained without injury to its ultimate powers of resistance, or the 
exact amount of load to which a bridge may be subjected mthout 
endangering its safety. 

To give tables of the experiments would occupy too much space, 
but we may give the results arrived at. It follows from them that 
wi'ought-iron girders of ordinary construction are nut safe when sub- 
mitted to violent disturbances equivalent to one-third the weight that 
would break them. They, however, exhibit wonderful tenacity when 
subjected to the same treatment with one-fourth the load ; and assuming 
that an iron-girder bridge will bear with this load 12,000,000 changes 
without injury, it is clear that it would require 328 years at the rate 
of 100 changes a day before its secm'ity was affected. It would, how- 
ever, Dr. Fairbairn adds, be dangerous to risk a load of one-third the 
breaking weight u]5on bridges of this description, as according to the 
last experiment, the beam broke with 313,000 changes ; or a period of 
eight years, at the same rate as before would be sufficient to break it. 
But the same beam had before been submitted to 3,000,000 changes 
with one-fourth the load, and it might be that during these experi- 
ments it had undergone a gradual deterioration which must some time, 
however remote, have terminated in fracture. 

The girder experimented on, we may add, was a wrought-iron plate 
beam of the ordinary form, having a sectional top area nearly double 
that of the bottom. 

An abstract of an abstract would give a very imj)erfect notion of 
the ideas propounded by the Eev. Josej)h Bayma " On Molecular 
Mechanics," a new science, by which the author proposes to solve, 
" a problem which includes all branches of physics, and which may be 
enunciated in general terms, as follows : — 

" From the knowledge we gain of certain properties of natural sub- 
stances by observation and experiment, to determine the intrinsic consti- 
tution of these bodies, and the laics according to ivhich they ought to act, 
and he acted upon in any hypothesis whatever" There is no explaining 
a science like that of " Molecular Mechanics," as sviccinctly as 
Mme. De Stael once requested some German philosopher to explain 
his system — " Dites-moi votre systeme dans un mot." We must wait for 
the author's volumes. 

Two short papers, one by Mr. Prestwich " On some fui'ther Evidence 
bearing on the Excavation of the Valley of the Somme by Eiver 
Action ; " and another by the Eev. S. Haughton, " On the Joint 
System of Ireland and Cornwall," make up the geological contributions 
to the Eoyal Society during the first two months of the present year. 

18C1.] Tlie Boyal Institution. 303 


The scientific lectures at the Royal Institution have been of varied 
interest. In the first, on January 22, Mr. Grove, Q.C., gave an ac- 
count of those curious cxj)criments " On Boiling Water," which are 
now well known to all scientific men. Mr. Grove's experiments are 
confessedly but a continuation of those of M. Donny, of Brussels, who 
found that when water has been deprived of air, it no longer boils in 
the ordinary sense of that word, but exhibits the singular phenomenon 
of an occasional burst of vaporu', the water in the intervals attaining a 
temperature higher than 212° Fahr. The principal result of Mr. 
Grove's investigations goes to prove the almost absolute impossibility 
of depriving water of all air ; for however long, and under whatever 
conditions, water is submitted to heat, there is still foimd in it a very 
minute proportion of nitrogen. The lecturer hinted at some possible 
chemical connection between nitrogen and watei", the prejionderating 
substances on the surfixce of oiu* planet, and the possibility of nitrogen 
not being merely the inert diluent it is commonly supposed. 

Simple boiling, in the sense of a liquid expanded by heat into its 
vapour without being decomposed or having permanent gas eliminated 
fi-om it, the lecturer believed to bo imknown. Boiling (ebullition), 
therefore, is not the result of merely raising a liquid to a given tem- 
peratm-e, but something much more complex. 

To describe the experiments of Mi". Grove woidd occupy too much 
space, and we can only indicate the residts, which went to show that 
chemical purity is a thing almost unattainable, and that in nature 
everything can be fovmd in anything if carefully sought. Bromine 
when boiled, however long, always yielded oxygen ; phosphorus in- 
variably gave phosphurettod hydrogen ; and sulphur, sulphm-etted 
hydrogen, probably from the decomjjosition of water contained, which 
might lead to the supjDosition that a minute portion of oxygen, hydro- 
gen, or of water is inseparable from these siibstances, and if boiled to 
absolute dryness, a minute portion of the gas woidd be left for each 

Mr. Grove further alluded to the eflects of intense heat on simjile 
and comj)ound bodies, showing how the latter are decomposed, and the 
former imdergo some moleculai- change, as phosphorus into its allo- 
tropic condition and oxygen into ozone. These facts showed that the 
effects of heat are not so simple as commonly supposed. In by far 
the greater niunber of cases, possibly in all, it is not mere expansion 
into vapour M'hich is produced, but there is fm-ther a chemical or 
molecular change. 

As regards the phenomenon of ebullition, Mr. Grove believes that no 
one has seen this take place without permanent gas being liberated, 
and th;it what is termed boiling arises from the extrication of a bubble 
of permanent gas, either by chemical decomposition of the liquid, or 
by the separation of some gas associated in minute quantity with the 
liquid, and fi-om which human means have hitherto failed to purge it. 

304 Proceedings of Metropolitan Societies. [April, 

[These experiments of Mr. Grove probably explain tbe difficulty 
wMch working engineers have noticed of getting up steam with sur- 
face condensed water, and suggest the aeration of such water before it 
is again passed into the boiler. Mr. Grove asserts that water exposed 
to air takes it up as a sponge does water ; but under some circum- 
stances it may not absorb enough to produce steady ebullition.] 

On January 29, Dr. Frankland lectured on the Glacial Ei^och. As, 
however, this discourse will be treated at length in our Geological 
Chronicle, we shall content oui'selves with a brief sketch of Dr. Frank- 
land's physical theory. All oiu- readers are acquainted with the evi- 
dences of glacier action on the sm-face of our earth, and the various 
hypotheses upon which the formation of glaciers has been explained. 
Dr. Frankland advanced a new theory, and conjectures that the sole 
cause of the phenomena of the glacial epoch was a higher temperatm'e of 
the ocean, than that which obtains at present. Since the earth appears 
to be slowly cooling, it is conceivable that there was a time (not geo- 
logically distant) when the waters of the ocean existed in the atmosphere 
as aqueous vapom*, as it may in Jupiter and Venus at the present day. 
After the formation of the ocean, the lecturer showed that the land must 
have cooled more rapidly than the sea. At this part of the subject, he 
alluded to some unpublished exjieriments of Dr.Tyndall, which prove the 
extraordinary intranscalency of aqueous vapom* to rays of heat issuing 
from water. He showed also the comparative facility with which radiant 
heat passes from granite through most air. Thus we have a state of 
things tending much more to the conservation of the heat of the watei", 
than to the retention of that of the land ; and therefore, while the 
ocean retained a temperature considerably higher than at present, 
the mountainous regions of the earth had undergone a considerably 
greater refrigeration. The evaporation from the ocean would, there- 
fore, have been greater than at present, and this increased evaporation 
must have been attended by increased precij)itation, which would 
suffice to supply the higher portions of the land with that gigantic 
ice-burthen, which groaned down the mountain slopes dm-ing the 
glacial epoch. But as the oceanic temperature was higher, why was 
not the atmosphere warmer at greater elevations,' and the snow-line 
raised? In answering this question. Dr. Frankland showed that the 
height of the snow-line essentially depends upon the amoimt of pre- 
cipitation and accumulation of snow dm-ing the cold season, and not 
upon mean temperatm'e. The mean temperatm'e of land under exten- 
sive surfaces of snow must have been reduced, notwithstanding that 
the amount of heat in activity on the surface of the earth was greater 
dm'ing the glacial epoch than at present. The com-se of events, there- 
fore, must have been as follows : — Whilst the ocean maintained a high 
temperature, the snow-line floated above the summits of the mountains ; 
but with the reduction of the oceanic temperatiu'e it gradually de- 
scended, enveloping peak after peak, xmtil, during the glacial epoch, it 
attained its lowest depression, whence it again rose, owing to dimi- 
nished evaporation, to its present position. 

On February 12, Dr.Wanklyn delivered a lecture " On the Synthesis 
of Organic Bodies," giving a brief account of the labom-s of W.ohler, 

1864.J The Boyal Institution. 305 

Pcloiizc, Kolbo, and Borthclot, in this most promising and interesting 
department of chemical research. 

On the 18th, Mr. Savory Icctiu'ed " On Dreaming and Somnam- 
bulism in their relation to the Fvmctions of certain Nerve Centres." 
The actions of the body are variously classed as excito-motor, sensori- 
motor, and ideo-motor, the nerve centres employed in these actions 
being particular parts of the brain. Sleep is to the brain what rest 
is to the other parts of the body, and di-eams result from the imperfect 
exercise of the hemisj)heres when only in a state of partial repose. 
Somnambulism results from the activity of the sensorium while the 
hemispheres are at rest. Dreaming is more common than somnam- 
bulism, because the cerebral lobes are most liable to variation from tho 
quantity and quality of blood supplied to them, and from the influence 
of stimulants, narcotics, &c. In profound sleep no actions but excito- 
motor, or involuntary, such as the movements of respiration and of the 
heart, are performed ; and these are reduced in force and frequency. 
In dreaming, ideas are aroused, and impressions either subjective or 
objective are produced. If the latter, it shows that the sensorium must 
be in partial activity. In somnambidism, the actions are sensori- 
motory, and the sensorium is in full activity. The above is the 
merest outline of a very eloquent lectui-e, which was concluded by 
some observations on the beneficial moral effects that may possibly be 
derived from a study of our dreams. They may in fact become the 
means of showing us what we really are. 

On February 26, Mr. Prestwich lectm-ed "On the Quaternary Flint 
Implements of Abbeville, Amiens, Hoxne, &c. ; their Geological Posi- 
tion and History." In his address (fully reported in om* Geological 
Chronicle), the lectm-er says he is convinced that the flint imjjlements 
are the genuine work of man's hands, and that their being found along 
with the remains of extinct animals, necessitates bringing the date of 
these animals forward, as much as carrying back that of man. He 
beKeves we have no data to decide definitely on the age of these re- 
mains ; but thinks we are not warranted in assuming the length of 
time alleged. 

The interesting and important lectm-e of Professor Stokes, upon 
the "Discrimination of Organic Bodies by their Optical Properties," 
must for the present be postponed. 

306 Proceedings of Metropolitan Societies. [April, 


One of the most interesting papers communicated to this Society 
during this session, was by Mr Alfred Newton, on the discovery of a 
mummy of the Great Auk (Alca imjyennis), in Funk or Penguin Island, 
170 miles north of St. John's, Newfoundland, it appears that ever 
since the publication of Mr. Yarrell's ' History of British Birds,' 
containing his account of the Alca impennis, wherein was cited 
M. Audubon's statement that that species bred on an island in the 
neighboiu'hood of Newfoundland, the attention of British ornitho- 
logists has been directed to that colony, in the hope of obtaining 
thence specimens of this rare aud curious bird. The Great Auk was 
known to the sailors engaged in the Newfoimdland cod fisheries, as 
the Penguin, so far back as the year 1670, and the few that have been 
seen within the last sixty years or so, are sj)oken of as " Penguins." 
A Mr. Wolley had ascertained these facts, and feeling convinced that 
specimens of the bird were yet to be obtained, determined to work out 
its history. Meanwhile Professor Steenstruj) published (Videnskabelige 
Meddelelser, 1855, pp. 33-116) an account of the Alca impennis, in 
connection with the discovery of its bones in great abundance on 
Funk or Penguin Island, by Herr Stuvitz. The author of the paper, 
Mr. Newton, feeling great confidence in Herr Stuvitz's statements, 
immediately set about corresj)onding with every one he could hear of 
in Newfoundland likely to assist him in obtaining any of these much- 
prized remains of the Great Auk. At last, after considerable delay, by 
the conjoint labom-s of the Eev. Eeginald Johnson, of Fogo, and the 
Bishop of Newfoimdland, Mr. Newton has succeeded in inducing Mr. 
N. R. Vail, a gentleman of scientific taste, to make application to Mr. 
Glindon, who is removing the soil from Penguin Island, on accoimt of 
its containing large quantities of phosphatic manure, and who has 
ordered his men there employed to use their best endeavom's to ob- 
tain the bones of the Penguin. Amongst numerous other remains, the 
mummy was found which Mr. Newton exhibited. It seems to have 
been deeply buried, being, says the Bishop of Newfoimdland, " foiu* feet 
below the surface, and under two feet of ice." The skeleton is not quite 
perfect ; but when it is remembered what a rarity any bones of the bird 
are, and that the nearest approach to a perfect skeleton of the Great 
Auk, viz. that in the Jardin des Plantes, is wanting in many respects, 
the importance of Mr. Newton's discovery will be appreciated. Be- 
sides the skeleton in the Jardin des Plantes, there are two specimens 
of this bird in the Museum at Copenhagen — dissected with a view to 
show the various organs. In many museums specimens of bones from 
various parts of the body exist — as at Christiania, the Eoyal College 
of Surgeons, Berlin, and elsewhere. There are altogether sixty-three 
or sixty-four stuffed skins of the Alca impennis known to exist ; many 
of these contained parts of the skeleton, which have in some cases been 
removed without injuring the skin. Mr. Newton expressed his inten- 
tion of placing the specimen he had so perseveringly obtained in the 

1864. J The Zoological Society. 307 

tlio hands of Professor Owen, from whom an accoimt of the bird's 
osteology was auticiiiatcd. 

Mr. A. E. Wallace has contributed a very interesting paper on the 
birds inhabiting the islands of Timor, Florcs, and Lombock, with de- 
scriptions of new species. The chain of islands of which Timor is 
the last, extends along the east of Javiis, and forms a natm-al subdivi- 
sion of the Malayan Ai'chipelago. The soil of these islands is very 
dry ; active volcanoes are still at work in them, and their origin is 
probably volcanic. The vegetation consists of spiny and prickly 
shrubs, the dense forests and luxuriant growths of most equatorial 
regions being quite unknown. During five months, Mr. Wallace ob- 
tained 112 species of birds from Timor— the number of species laiown 
altogether being 118 ; from Flores he obtained 86 sjjecies ; from Lom- 
bock, 63 species ; from Sumbawa no collection was made ; and the 
island of Bali belongs to the Indian region, and is therefore not con- 
sidered in connection with the Malayan groups. The total number of 
species of birds known to inhabit the Timorean sub-group is 186, 
and Mr. Wallace makes some interesting comparisons, from the data 
he has obtained, with the avifauna of the neighbom-ing islands, which 
he has so succcssfidly investigated. The presence in the Timorese 
avifauna of a large number of Australian representative species, and 
the fact that the species peculiar to Timor ai:)proach the Australian 
types, though at the same time the Javan forms are very abimdant and 
there are few birds of the Javan type which are not identical wdth 
species of that island, leads Mr, Wallace to infer that the island was 
more anciently populated from Australia, while the Javian forms have 
appeared later, and partially extinguished the Australian types. Timor 
is now nearly 20 miles by sea from Java, while 300 miles separate it 
from Australia. A large sandbank however extends from the north 
coast of that continent to within 20 miles of Timor, and Mr. Wallace 
believes it probable that this sandbank is owing to the submergence of 
the laud not very long since. It is not likely that an absolute con- 
nection by land existed between Timor and Australia, since but one 
Marsupial, and that of a Moluccan type, is found in the island. Yet 
we must assiune a much closer approximation to the continent, in order 
to enable us to understand how it happens that though the birds of 
these islands are, on the whole, almost as much Indian as Australian, 
yet the apparently endemic species have such a preponderating Austra- 
lian character. 

A list of birds from Damara land, collected by Mr. Anderson, has 
been communicated by Mr. T. H. Gurney. The same gentleman com- 
municated a list of a small collection of birds fi'om Huaheima, one of 
the Society Islands. The birds were obtained for Mr. Gm-ney by Mr. 
T. H. Wodehouse, H.B.M. consul at Eaiatea. 

Among the new species of Mammalia described before the Society 
during the past quarter, is a new squirrel from Natal, which Dr. Gray 
proposes to call Sciurus ornatus ; also a new species of seal from the 
west coast of North America, which Dr. Gray has named Halocyon 

308 Proceedings of Metropolitan Societies. [April, 

Mr. Flower has been dissecting the Echidna, which lately died at 
the Gardens in Eegent's Park, and has commnnicated a paper on its 
cerebral anatomy. He finds that the corpora quadrigemina does not, 
as has been stated by Owen and others, differ materially in this mono- 
trema from the ordinary structure of this part of the brain in other 

The fishes of the inland rivers and lakes of many countries are so 
little known, and the circumstances under which they exist are so 
varied and peculiar, that in nearly every district new and local species 
are to found. Captain Dow has lately transmitted to England a col- 
lection of thirty-one species obtained from Central America, among 
which Dr. Giinther has determined several new species of great interest 
which he has described to the Society. 

An addition to the 1,200 species of Helix is made by Dr. T. E. 
Cox, who describes a species from Port Denison, N.E. Australia, as 
Helix Forbesii. Mr. Frank Buckland, who has done such good work 
for our salmon and trout, and also tried to show us a live porpoise in 
London, has tiu'ned his attention to oysters, and has addressed a com- 
munication to the Society, in which he advocates the introduction of the 
American Ostrea Virginica into the seas of this country. 

Mr. H. T. B. Hancock is performing some experiments on the sup- 
posed electrical powers of Octopus, by means of a specimen in the 
Society's gardens. 

1864.] ( 309 ) 



Almost every department of farm management is in active operation 
dm-ing the first mouths of the year. Land drainage and antiminal 
tiUage have put the fallows in the best condition for deriving fertility 
from the atmosphere. The direct aj)plication of manures to the crop 
becomes useful and economical as the season of growth commences. 
Seedtime brings under discussion the various methods at our command 
for plant improvement. The continuance of stall-feeding on winter 
food keeps the whole subject of the meat manufacture before the mind 
of the farmer. And the lambing and calving season recalls for his 
consideration all those points on which the theory and practice of the 
improvement of his live-stock depend. It is in the order of these 
several departments of farm practice that we write the agricultural 
record of the first three months of 1864. 

1. A dry winter had very early in the season put the tillage vrork 
of oiu- arable farms unusually forward ; and the periods of severe frost 
whicli towards the end of winter were experienced have been of the 
greatest service on all well-di'ained clays. It is on such lands espe- 
cially that the steam cultivation of the previous autumn proves supe- 
rior to the ordinary horse tillage, which on such soils interferes very 
materially with the drainage of the land. 

The extension of this steam cultivation is the gi'eat agricultural 
event of late years, and though comparatively little is heard of it 
dm'ing the winter months, yet it is then especially that its advantages 
are seen and realized. Fields which have hitherto been kept dry by 
steep sm-face lands or ridges and frec[uent intervening fm-rows, as well 
as by the ordinary underground drains, are now left flat and dry, torn 
up roughly before winter by the engine-di-awn cultivator. 

The drainage of stiff clay soils has, indeed, till now been rai-ely 
thoroiighly efl:ected. Trenches have, indeed, been dug some 3 or 4 
feet deep and 7 or 8 yards apart, and through pipes placed in them it 
has been expected that all the rain which falls upon the field \\-ill find 
its way, after gradual penetration, thrt)Ugh the soil and subsoil, and 
filtration by every particle of all this three or fom* foot deep mass of eaith. 
But after this the upper layer of this mass has hitherto been cultivated 
in a way which interposes between it and the lower layers what is 
practically an impervious floor. Three or fom* ploughings of gi-aia 
stubbles before the succeeding peas and beans, the passage of long 
teams of cattle on the floor over which the soil, and mider which the 
subsoil lies is an efiectual induration. This floor is fatal to land 
drainage, and therefore to fertility. It must be broken up, and this 
can be done effectually only by steam power. Every month of ]March 

VOL. I. Y 

310 Chronicles of Science. [April, 

for several years we have walked over hundreds of acres of stiff clay 
land — land needing four horses to the plough — drained and smashed 
up by steam power before winter, between whose surface and the di'ains 
no such floor exists. It has trodden dry, and has then been lying in 
as wholesome a condition as it is possible for land to exhibit at this 
season. The only tillage which it has had has been a one-way culti- 
vation, or grubbing by steam power 8 or 9 inches deep during 
the previous dry weather of October or November, And this land has 
thus been left a treasui-e-box whose lock has been effectually picked, 
of whose stores, made thus accessible, it only needs that use be made 
by planting well-selected living seed, in order that the utmost fertility 
may be exhibited at harvest time. Steam cultivation, after drains have 
been dug and placed, is the way to ensure good drainage. Tillage by 
steam power, imder such circumstances, is the true picklock by which 
the exhaustless stores of food for plants present in all clay soils, lying 
now inaccessible, may be laid open to the roots of plants. The break- 
ing up of the floor, which horse cidtivation lays immediately below 
the surface, and the breaking up of soil and subsoil, with the exposure 
of the whole to air and rain on its way downwards to the di"ain, will 
yet exert a marvellous influence on fertility. Hitherto the progress of 
events has been all to the advantage of the lighter soils. The use of 
guano and of artificial manures, and the extension of liberal feeding 
in the sheep-fold, have all been especially to the advantage of our 
sands and lighter loams. The application of steam power as the 
auxiliary of land di'ainage gives now the turn of advantage to the 
owners and occupiers of oiu- clays ; and whereas by marling, sheep- 
feeding, and artificial manuring the lighter soils have tiU now been 
foremost in the march of agricultui-al improvement, thus contributing 
more than any other to that increased produce of food which English 
fields have of late provided, we may now exj)ect that by di*ainage and 
effective tillage the stiffer lands will take their turn in front, making 
the most rapid progress, yielding the largest produce, the most profit, 
and the highest rent. 

All these considerations, and others connected with the best rota- 
tions of cropjiiug for clay soils, were discussed at the meeting of the 
English Agricultm-al Society on March 16th, when Mr. A. Hughes of 
Thorness, Isle of Wight, read a paper on the Cultivation and Ma- 
nagement of Clay Farms. 

2. At a previous meeting of the same Society, Mr. Lawes of Eoth- 
amstead had read a paper on the Value of common Salt as a Manm-e. 
Its reputation as a fertilizer has, as he believes, hitherto stood too high. 
It has been said to increase the production of grain, and to improve 
the quality of straw. It is believed to have great effect especially 
on crops, such as mangold-wm-zcl, which are of marine origin. It is 
said to fix ammonia in the soil, and also to preserve moisture in dry 
seasons, Mr. Lawcs's own experiments have satisfied him that it is of 
little use. 

The two plots of land, A and B, on which these experiments had been 
tried had both received exactly tlie same amount of artificial manm-e, 
but A, unlike P*, received, during 18.5^1,1852, and LSHH, 3 cwt. of common 

1864.] Agriculture. 311 

salt per acre per annum in addition to the other manures. The paral- 
lel is exact with that exception. The mean produce of 1848, 1849, 
and 1850, the years previous to the application of salt, was 32 j or '62^ 
bushels per acre in each case ; showing that the crops of wheat were 
extremely alike. There was, in fact, no difference between them. 
Again, in 1851, 1852, and 1853, the years in which A received 3 cwt. 
of salt i^er acre per annum and B did not, the produce of wheat per 
acre was almost exactly the same. Dm-iug the next ten years also the 
produce was again nearly alike. The j^roduce of the sixteen years was 
in each case 37;^ bushels, showing that in the yield there was no trace 
whatever of the action of the 9 cwt. of common salt. Some persons 
think that, although salt may not increase the quantity of produce, 
yet it improves its quality. What, then, was the weight of the produce 
per bushel ? In the first three years the weight was a little higher in 
A than in B ; in the second three years, when the salt was applied — the 
difference was again slightly in favom- of A, though not so much as it 
was before ; and in the next ten years the weights per bushel w'ere almost 
exactly alike. The total produce of the first three years was 5,988 lbs. 
against 5,976 lbs. — a difference of only a few pounds. In the thi-ee 
years when salt was used the produce was, as nearly as possible, the 
same ; and in the ten years after salt was applied, the produce was 
7,799 lbs. against 7,811 lbs. — again a difference of only a few pounds. 
In the total produce of the whole period of sixteen years the difference 
was only 12 lbs. — 7,222 lbs. against 7,234 lbs. Salt is sujjposed to 
strengthen straw, and to improve its quality. In the fii'st period, 
before salt was applied, there was 57 lbs. and a fi'action against 56 lbs. 
of grain to 100 lbs. of straw ; therefore A was in that case rather supe- 
rior to B. In the next period there was 42*6 lbs. against 41'7 lbs., 
there being again a slight difference in favour of A. Practically 
there was no difference in the proportions of corn and straw, taking 
the whole period. 

For maugold-wurzels, of which Mr. Lawes grows annually about 15 
acres, he has been in the habit, which is prevalent, of ajjplying a few 
cwts. of salt with the guano which he uses along with a half-di-essing 
of dung. But an experiment last year showed that the crop was 
imaltered where no salt had been applied, and was diminished where 
a double allowance of salt had been added. Of course the experience 
of a single locality will not determine the truth for all England. Biit 
Eothampstead, in Hertfordshire, is sufficiently inland to make one 
expect that there the full effect of salt as a mamu-e would be seen. 
Though, however, there ai'e imdoubted instances where salt has been 
applied with advantage as a manure, yet in an island such as oiu^s, 
swept annually by Atlantic storms, it can rarely be the case that the 
common salt of the soil is the body in minimo, whose quantity, accord- 
ing to the accepted theory of maniu'es, rules the crop. 

A recent lectm-e on Artificial Maniu'es, by Professor Andei'son, the 
chemist to the Highland and Agricultural Society, has directed atten- 
tion to the prices charged for Lawson's so-called phospho-guano, and 
for ordinary superphosphates. The phospho-guano, as sold, is the 
result of treating, with a comparatively small quantity of sulphuric 

T 2 


Chronicles of Science. 


acid, the natural rock deposit wLich is imported from Monk's Island 
and other islets in its neighbourhood. Certain reports, by Liebig, 
Voelcker, and Anderson, of the merits of this substance as a manure, 
which had been drawn up at the request of Messrs. Lawson to be 
•used as affidavits in connection with, a suit brought against them 
in the Court of Chancery, by Messrs. Thomson, Bonar, and Co., 
agents for the sale of Peruvian g-uano, have of late been largely used 
by them as a trade advertisement, and a good deal of angry feeling 
has been excited amongst the manufactui'ers of the cheaper sujierphos- 
phates by this quotation of ex parte statements on high a^^thority 
against them. The upshot of the discussion, which has been carried 
on chiefly in the columns of the Scottish agricultm-al journals, appears 
to be the admission, on all hands, that it matters not for the agricultural 
effect of it what may have been the origin, whether mineral or animal, 
of the soluble superphosphate of lime which exists in any manure ; 
though as regards the remainder of the substance, which has not been 
acted on by the acid used, but remains in the original condition of 
neutral phosphate, it is a useful manure in the case of the Monk's Island 
deposit, and still more so in the case of bones, but it is entirely 
valueless in the case of the ordinary coprolite, which is the source of 
most of the cheap superphosphates in the market. The tendency of the 
discussion will undoubtedly tend ultimately to bring down the present 
high price charged for the phosiDho-guano, and assimilate it more 
nearly to the prices charged for ordinary superphosphate. 

The imports of manui-ing substances during the past year, which 
have been lately published, show a considerable increase under the 
head of bones and guano, but a large diminution under the head of 
nitres. The figm-es are as follow : — 




Bones, whether burnt or not 



Cubic nitre 



3. We come now to such facts of our ciu-rent agricultural history 
as are classed under the general subject of plant growth. Perhaps the 
leading fact under this head is the growing conviction that, thanks to 
manuring and sheep-feeding on om- light soils, and to drainage and 
better tillage on oiu- clays, the fertility of the arable lands of this coun- 
try has of late been rapidly advancing, while that of the pastm-e lands 
has been stationary. In Gloucestershire a recent inquiry, helped by 
the records of a Cotswold farm which had been kept for nearly a 
hundred years, led clearly to this conclusion. Wheat had on that farm 
doubled its produce per acre since the latter j)art of last century ; 
barley and oats had not increased correspondingly ; but green crops 




had largely increased in productiveness, and a much larger quantity 
of meat is now made per acre than formerly. And this was found to 
contrast most glaringly with the condition of the dairy districts of the 
same county which do not now keep more stock, or yiehl more cheese, 
and butter, and bacon, than they used to do thirty years ago. 

Another fact of some interest under this head, is the extension of 
the growth of flax diu'ing the past year. In Ireland, the following has 
been the acreage of this crop during some past years : — 

Acres of Flax . 


147,866 150,312 


The promotion of flax cultui-e in England is creating a good deal 
of attention. And in many country towns, meetings have been held 
for the establishment of flax retteries, which, as offering a market for 
the produce, is necessary as a fii'st step towards the extension of flax 

The subject of plant improvement, and especially that of our 
cereals, has been a good deal imder discussion in oui" agricultural 
jom'nals. Mr. Shirreff, of Haddington, to whom we owe many of our 
best sorts of wheat and oats, seems to consider that the work of plant 
improvement is exclusively natm-al, and that all that we can do is, in 
efiect, to keep a sharp look-out, and whenever we see in any natui-al 
sort or variety the qualities we want, take care of the plant, and 
multiply it as fast as we can. 

Mr. Hallett, of Brighton, on the other hand, who advertises at such 
enormous prices what he calls a " a pedigree" wheat, believes in the 
power of improving a plant by cultivation. He chooses a promising 
car of Wheat — plants all the seeds — takes that plant of the series 
which is best — chooses its best ear — again plants all iis seeds — again 
chooses the best plant, best ear, and best seed — and after a series of 
harvests thus obtained, during which, as he alleges, the plants and 
cars have annually improved upon his hands, he takes the ultimate 
produce as the parents of the grain which he shall ofter for sale, and 
multiplies it by thin seeding and careful cultivation as fast as he can 
— and so by-and-by the " Z family," or some other of long lineage, is 
offered to the " faithful," for they alone will ventnre its price, at per- 
haps one or two guineas a bushel ! 

There is probably less difference between these gentlemen than they 
admit. Both select the best natiu'al origin they can find — both are 
confident that the progeny will be like the parent — both believe in the 
fixity of character of the resultant grain ; the one, however, thinking 
that the character is fixed in the origin, and the other, that it is fixed 
in the successive annual growths of the sort in question. 

Neither will deny the immense folly of cai-elessness in the selection 
of oiu" seed — and both may well wonder at farmers who when they 
want a good Cabbage, Mangold, or Turnip, take care to choose a good 


Chronicles of Science. 


plant as the parent of the seed they use, yet the moment they 
approach the cereals, at once neglect the principle which in the other 
case they know to be efficient and correct. 

A good deal of excitement has prevailed in Ireland and elsewhere, 
owing to an unusual liability on the part of the Swedish turnip to 
degenerate into a Eape-like plant, sending all its growth into leaf and 
stem and refusing to form a bulb. An action against the seedsman 
for damages, on the plea that the seed was at fault, resiilted in a 
verdict for the defendant, the jury being unable to resist the evidence 
of the mischief being due to other causes. It appears that the 
cii'cumstances of the soil may so differ in the same field that ro^vs of 
plants, from seed sown out of the same seed-box from end to end 
across it, shall in some places exhibit uniformly good bulbs and 
elsewhere nothing but leaf and stem. It appears to us that even here 
a good deal of responsibility rests with the seedmau, and seed grown 
from successive generations of well-selected plants would have that 
power of resisting the mischievous influence of circumstances and of 
producing good bulbs in spite of them, according to a long continued 
habitude and bent, which Swede seed grown at hap-hazard is found 
to want. 

Seed-time calls to our remembrance the invention of Mr. Smith's 
(of Woolston) capital combined seed drill and cultivator for draught 
by steam power. It is being extensively used this spring and will no 
doubt come largely into operation as a most ef&cient tool for sowing 
wheat upon a clean bean stubble, and even occasionally for planting 
beans upon a clean wheat stubble — certainly for sowing barley after 
the sheepfold— ai one operation. It is the latest illustration that we 
have of the way in which steam power is applicable both to the 
economizing of farm labom- and to the increase of its efficiency. 

The character of the wonderful harvest with which England was 
last year blest, appears from the following classification of the reports 
regarding it from all parts of the country which have been published 
by the ' Mark Lane Express.' It will be seen what an immense i^re- 
ponderance of the reports regarding the wheat crop declare it to have 
been over average. 





Under average , . 
Average .... 
Over average . 







4- We have now to refer to points connected with the meat manu- 
facture. The high price of beef, mutton, and wool have all tended to 
promote in a wonderful degree the extension of the practice of high 
feeding, wliich has of late years enormously grown. No great increase of 
the impoi-ts of oilcakes, on which the chief dependence has been hitherto 
placed, seems from the following figures to be possible. 




Tlio following aro the imports of Liusccd and of Linseed cakes 
during the past six years : — 

Oil cnkes 


1,017,844 1,270.911 1,330.623 
80,629 95,208' 108,826 


101,156 88,566 

On the other hand there is a gi'owing conviction of the extent of 
fraud by adulteration, to which the imrchaser of these cakes is liable. 
The consequence is a probably unprecedented consumption of home- 
grown grain ; and to this the low prices of barley and of wheat have no 
doubt contributed. Whenever the price of grain or whole meal is one- 
eighth, or thereabouts, that of meat, it is profitable to use it as food for fat- 
tening stock. And of coiu'se there is a great additional advantage besides 
the mere sale at a good price of inferior gTain which is derived from this 
method of their disposal. The enrichment of the manm-e which is thus 
affected is an additional profit of great value. To how large an extent 
this is made use of, let the following example suffice to show. It relates 
to a farm on the edge of Woking Common, over which we lately walked, 
where the soil is natm'ally extremely poor, but made wonderfully pro- 
ductive by a large consumption of purchased food for fattening stock. 
On about 500 acres of this poor sandy land, close on the edge of w^hat 
may be called the dreariest waste in the island, a herd of 50 to 70 cows 
is milked for the London market ; a dry flock of Hampshire Downs, 
varying from 200 to 400 head, is fed ; and hogs, ranging in number 
from 1,500 to 2,000 per annum, are fattened up to 10 or 12 scores a 
piece. All this is done so long as meat and bacon are at ordinary prices, 
with a small profit ; but the principal advantage no doubt is, that the 
natm-ally poor soil of the farm is thus made capable of growing 5 
quarters of wheat, 5 or 6 of barley, and 30 to 40 tons of mangold-wur- 
zel per acre. The swine, bought at 5 to 7 score a j)iece, are kept till 
10 or 12, making meat at the rate of rather more than 1 lb. a day, and 
receiving half a peck of meal daily upon an average, viz. one-half barley 
meal, and the rest wheat, Indian corn, lentils, peas, beans, buck-wheat, 
or whatever else is cheapest. 

Of course, with such a great quantity of stock to feed, piu'chases of 
food are very large ; 500 up to 1,000 bushels of grain are used weekly ; 
and the annual retm-n of meat — 12,000 lbs. of mutton, 150,000 lbs. of 
bacon, and about 40,000 gallons of milk — equal in all to 200,000 lbs, 
of meat per annum — amounts to a manufactm-e of 400 lbs. of meat per 
acre — which is, we believe, quite unparalleled. 

The eflfect is seen in the high artificial fertility of this natm-ally 
poor land. The large quantity of rich manure, deep cidtivation, and 
sheep-treading, are the three agencies employed, and their success, 
unaided, as in other pm-e sandy districts, by any possibility of marl- 
ing or claying the land, has been unequivocal. No contrast is so 
great as that existing between the luxxuiant growth of the fields on the 

316 Chronicles of Science. [April, 

Hoebridge Farm, near Woking, and the utter wortUessness of the waste 
close by. 

The principal point of recent interest, however, under our present 
head, during the present quarter, undoubtedly has been the introduction 
by the Government of the Bill for permitting the use of malt, free of 
duty, as food for sheep and cattle. Whatever the satisfaction with 
reference to this measure may be, taking it in some degree to indicate 
that the Government may hereafter be willing to reconsider the whole 
subject of the malt tax, there can be little doubt nevertheless that it is 
in the meantime an utterly woi'thless concession to the agricultural 
interest. There are cheaper foods already at our command than ever 
malt, duty free, will be — and the mixtm-e of the malt with linseed meal, 
which is one of the safeguards which the Bill provides against those 
frauds against the revenue which it will facilitate, is no improvement 
of the material for use in either feeding-stall or sheep-fold. 

5. The value of pure-bred stock in the market, which indicates 
their intrinsic merits in the eye of judges, has lately received a singular 
illustration in high prices re