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Issued Monthly. 

VOL. VI. NOVEMBER, 1909. No, 1. 




Officers and Council . . 

Constitution of the South African Association 

Tables : Past Annual Meetings : — 

Places and Dates, Presidents, Vice-Presidents, and Local Secre- 

Sectional Presidents and Secretaries 

Evening Discourses 

General Meetings 

Officers of Local and Sectional Committees 

Proceedings of Seventh Annual General Meeting 

Report of Coxmcil, 1908- 1909 . . . . 

General Treasurer's Account, 1908-1909 . . 

AwEurd of the South Africa Medal , , 

Raison d'I;tre . . 

Transactions of Societies 

New Books . . . . . . 

Address by the President of the Association : H.E 
Goold-Adams, G.C,M.G., C.B. 


Address by the President of Section I. 

Prof. W 

of Members 

Sir Hamilton 












His Excellency Sir HAMILTON GOOLD-ADAMS, G.C.M.G., C.B. 


J. Burtt-Davy, F.L.S., Government 
Agrostologist and Botanist, Pretoria. 

Hugh Gunn, M.A., Director of Education 
of the Orange lliver Colony. 

R.Marloth, M.A., Ph.D., Cape Town. 

S. ScHi5NLAND, M.A., Ph.D., F.L.S., Profes- 
sor of Botany, Rhodes University 
College, Grahamstown. 


Prof. J. D. F. GILCHRIST, M.A., D.Sc, Ph.D., 
F.L.S., South African College, Cape 

R. T. A. INNES, F.R.A.S., Meteorological 
Observatory, Johannesburg. 


Prof. R. A. Lehfeldt, B.A., D.Sc, Transvaal University College, Johannesburg. 


E. Hope Jones, Box 1497, Cape Town. 



C. L. Botha, M.L.A. 

W. H. Barrett. 

M. Leviseur. 

Geo. Potts, M.Sc Ph.D. 

Arthur Stead, B.Sc F.C.S. 

J. M. Titley. 

Cape Peninsula. 

Prof. L. Crawford, M.A., D.Sc, F.R.S.E- 

Rev. Wm. Flint, D.D. 

Prof. P. D. Hahn, M.A., Ph.D. 

C. F. JURITZ, M.A., D.Sc, F.I.C. 

Rev. F. C. Kolbe, B.A., D.D. 

J. M. P. Muirhead, F.S.S., F.R.S.L., F.C.I.S. 

Albert Walsh. 



East London and King William's Town. 

Geo. Rattr.ay, M.A., B.Sc, F.R.G.S. 


E. G. DRtr Drury, M.D., B.S., D.P.H. 
Prof. J. E. DUERDEN, M.Sc, Ph.D., A.R.f.S. 


ARNOLD H. Watkins, M.D., M.R.C.S. 
Alpheus F. Williams. 

I Fred Rowland, F.C.I.S., Box 4375, Johan- 
I nesburg. 



Lieut.-Colonel H. W.atkins Pitchford, 

Port Elizabeth 

Wm. Arnott. 

T. W. Lowden. 

J. W. B. Gunning, Ph.D. 
A. M. A. Struben, A.M.I.C.E 
Arnold Theiler, C.M.G., M. 

J. T. B. Gellatly, A.M.I.C.E. 

J. R. K. Barker, R.P.A. 
A. VON Dessauer, M.E. 

F. Flowers, F.R.G.S. 
R. W. N. KOTZE, B.A. 

J. MOIR, M.A., D.Sc, F.C.S. 

G. E. Murray, M.D., F.R.C.S., L.R.C P 
Prof. John Orr, B.Sc, A.M.I.C.E. 

Prof. G. H. Stanley, A.R.S.M., M.I.M.E. 
J. A. Foote. 

Sir David Gill, K.C.B., 

F.R.S., F.R.S.E. 
Sir Charles Metcalfe, Bart., M.I.C.E. 
Theo. Reunert, M.I.C.E., M.I.M.E. 

LL.D., D.Sc, 

Gardner F. Williams, M.A. 
James Hyslop, D.S.O., M.B., CM. 
H.E. The Rt. Hon. Sir Walter Hely-Hut- 

H. M. Arderne. 



W. D. Morton. 

J. MoCrae, Ph.D.. F.I.C. 

Prof. J. C. ElATTiE, D.Sc, F.R.S.E. 



M. B. Gardner (Johannesburg 

J. M, P. Muirhead, F.S.S., F.R.S.E., FCIS 
(Cape Town). 



[As Amended at the Third Annual Meeting at Johannesbuni, 1905.] 


The objects of the Association are : — To give a stronger impulse 
and a more systematic chrection to scientific enquiry ; to promote 
the intercourse of Societies and individuals interested in Science in 
different parts of South Africa ; to obtain a more general attention 
to the objects of pure and applied Science, and the removal of any 
disadvantages of a public kind which may impede its progress. 


{a) All persons interested in the objects of the Association are 
eligible for ^Membership. 

{h) The Association shall consist of Permanent Members, here- 
after called " Members/' and Temporar}' Members, elected for a 
session, hereafter called " Associates." 

(c) Members and Associates shall be elected directly by the 
Council, or by the Managing Committee of Council. Associates 
may also be elected by Local Committees. Members may also be 
elected by a majority of the Members of Council resident in that 
centre at which the next ensuing session is to be held. 

{d) The Council shall have the power, by a three-fourths vote, to 
remove the name of anyone whose Membership is no longer desirable 
in the interests of the Association. 


{a) Members shall be eligible for all offices of the Association, and 
to serve on its Committees, and shall receive gratuitously all ordinary 
jniblications issued by the Association during the year of their 
admission, and dvu-ing the years in which they continue to pay, 
without intermission, their Annual Subscription. 

{&) Associates are eligible to serve on the Local Reception Com- 
mittee, but are not eligible to hold any other office, and they are not 
entitled to receive gratuitously the publications of the Association. 

(c) Members may purchase from the Association (for the purpose 
of completing their sets) any of the Annual Reports of the Associa- 
tion, at a price to be fixed upon by the Council. 


{a) The Annual Subscription for Members shall be One Pound, 
payable first at election, and thereafter on the First of July of each 
year. After the first session* intending Members shall be required 
to pay an Entrance Fee of One Pound in addition. 

* The first session was held in Cape Town from 27th April to 2nd May, 1903 


(b) A Member may at any time become a Life Member by one 
payment of Ten Pounds, in lieu of future Annual Subscriptions, or 
in lieu of Entrance Fee and future Annual Subscriptions. 

(r) The Subscription for Associates for a Session shall be Fifteen 

(d) The Council may authorise Local Committees to admit 
students as Associates at a reduced subscri])tion on the special 
circumstances of each case being submitted. 


The Association shall meet in Session periodically for one week 
or longer. The place of meeting shall be appointed by the Council 
as far in advance as i)ossible, and the arrangements for it shall be 
entrusted to the Local Committee, in conjunction with the Council. 


{a) The ^lanagement of the affairs of the Association shall be 
entrusted to a Council, five to form a quorum. 

(h) The Council shall consist of all past Presidents of the Associa- 
tion, past and present General Secretaries and Treq.surers, and in 
addition representatives to be elected by each Centre, at a meeting 
to be held within one month prior to the Annual Meeting of the 
Association in the proportion of one representative for every 25 
Members, and such others to be elected by the Members at the 
Annual Meeting of the Association, as shall give altogether one 
^Member of Council to every 25 Members of the Association (exclud- 
ing past Presidents and past and present General Secretaries and 

(c) The Council so elected shall at once proceed to elect from its 
members the President, four Vice-Presidents, two General Secre- 
taries and one Treasurer. Assistant General Secretaries and local 
Honorary Treasurers may be elected at the Annual Meeting, or any 
Ordinary/ Meeting of the Council. The Council shall have the power 
to pay for the services of the Assistant Gejieral Secretaries, and lor 
such clerical assistance as it may consider necessary. 

(d) The Council shall have the power to add five Members (if 
necessary) to its number from among the Members of the Associa- 
tion resident in that Centre at which the next ensuing session is to 
be held. 

(e) In the event of a vacancy occurring in the Council in the 
intervals between the Annual Sessions the Council shall have the 
power to fill such vacancy. 

(/) During any Session of the Association the Council shall meet, 
at least, twice. 

(g) The Council shall have power to frame Bye-laws to facilitate 
the practical working of the Association, so long as these Bye-laws 
are not at variance with the Constitution. 


In -the intervals ])etween the Sessions of the Association, its 
general affairs shall be managed by a Committee of Council consist- 


ing of President, General Treasurer. General Secretaries, and four 
other Members, elected annually by the Council. Three of the 
Committee shall form a quorum. 


In the intervals between the Sessions of the Association, its local 
affairs shall be managed by the Local Committees. This Committee 
shall consist of the Members of the Council resident in that Centre, 
with such other Members of the Association as the said Members of 
Council may elect. 


The Local Committee of the Centre at which the Session is to be 
held shall form a Reception Committee, to assist in making arrange- 
ments for the meeting, and for the reception and entertainment of 
the visitors.* This Committee shall have power to add to its 
number from among the Members and Associates of the Association. 


The Headquarters of the Association shall be in Cape Town. 


((?) The Financial Year shall end on the 30th of June. 

{b) All sums received for Life Subscriptions and for Entrance 
Fees shall be invested in the names of three Trustees appointed 
by the Council, and only the interest arising from such investment 
shall be applied to the uses of the Association. 

(c)' Subscriptions shall be collected by the Local Honorary 
Treasurer of each Centre, and by him forwarded to the General 
Treasurer, after deducting expenditure authorised by the Council. 

{d) The Local Committees shall not have power to expend money 
without the authority of the Council, with the exception of the 
Local Committee of the Centre in which the next ensuing Session 
is to be held, which shall have the power to expend money collected 
or otherwise obtained in that Centre. Such disbursements shall 
be audited, and the financial statement and the surplus funds 
forwarded to the General Treasurer at least half-yearly. 

{e) All cheques shall be signed either by the General Treasurer 
and a General Secretary, or by the Local Treasurer and Secretary 
of the Centre at which the next ensuing Session is to be held. 

(/) Whenever the balance in the hands of the Treasurer shall 
exceed the sum requisite for the probable or current expenses of the 
Association, the Council shall invest the excess in the names of the 

(g) The whole of the accounts of the Association, i.e., the local 
as well as the general accounts, shall be audited annually by an 
auditor appointed by the Council, and the balance-sheet shall be 
submitted to the Council at the first meeting thereafter, and be 
printed in the Annual Report of the Association. 

* For arrangements with regard to Papers to be read, see Section XIV. 



(a) Grants may be made by the Association to Committees or 
to individuals for the promotion of Scientific research. 

(b) Committees and individuals to whom grants of money shall 
be entrusted are required to present to the following Meeting a 
report of the progress which has been made, together with a state- 
ment of the sums which have been expended. Any balance shall 
be returned to the General Treasurer. In each Committee the 
Secretary is the only person entitled to call on the Treasurer for 
such portions of the sums granted as may from time to time be 
required. In making grants of money to Committees or to indi- 
viduals, the Association does not contemplate 'the payments of 
personal expenses to the Members, or to individuals. 


The Council shall have the power to constitute such sections of 
the Association as it may consider necessary. The following 
sections have been constituted : — 

A. Astronomy. 

B. Anthropology and Ethnology. 



Geology and Mineralogy. 

Zoology. A^ 

C. Agriculture. 
Geodesy and Surveying. 
Sanitary Science. 

D. Archeology. 
Mental Science. 
Political Economy. 


(a) The Presidents, Vice-Presidents and Secretaries of the several 
sections shall be chosen by the Council, after consultation with the 
Local Committee of the Centre at which the next ensuing Session of 
the Association is to be held. 

{h) From the time of their election, which shall take place as 
soon as possible after the Session of the Association, they shall 
form themselves into an organising Committee, for the purpose of 
obtaining information upon Papers likely to be submitted to the 
Sections, and for the general furtherance of the work of the Sec- 


tional Committees. The Sectional Presidents of former years sluill 
be c% officio members of the Organising Committee. 

(c) The Sectional Committee shall have power to add to their 
number from among the Members and Associates of the Association. 

{d) The Committees of the several Sections shall determine 
the acceptance of Papers before the beginning of the Session, 
keeping the General Secretaries informed from time to time of 
their work. It is therefore desirable, in order to give an oppor- 
tunity to the Committees of doing justice to the several communi- 
cations, that each author should prepare an Abstract of his Pa])er, 
and he should send it, together with the original Pai:)er. to the 
Secretary of the Section before which it is to be read, so that it 
may reach him, at least, a fortnight before the Session. 

((,') Members may communicate to the Sections the Pajuns of 

(/) The Author of any Paper is at liberty to reserve his right of 
property therein. 

[g] The Sectional Committees shall meet not later than the 
first day of the Session in the Rooms of their respective Sections, 
and prepare the programme for their Sections and forward the 
same to the General Secretaries for publication. 

{h) The Council cannot guarantee the insertion of any Report, 
Paper, or Abstract in the Annual Volume, unless it be handed to 
the Secretary before the conclusion of the Session. 

{i) The Sectional Committee shall report to the Council what 
Reports, Papers or Abstracts it is thought advisable to print, but 
the final decision shall rest with the Council. 

XV.— RESEARrH com:\httees. 

{a) In recommending the appointment of Research Committees, 
all members of such Committees shall be named, and one of them, 
who has notified his willingness to accept the office, shall be 
appointed to act as Secretary. The number of Members apjwinted 
to serve on a Research Committee shall be as small as is consistent 
with its eiticient working. Individuals may be recommended to 
make reports. 

(6) All recommendations adopted l)y Sectional Committees shall 
be forwarded without delay to the Council for consideration and 


Any ])roposed alteration of the Rules 

n. Shall be intimated to the Council six months before the 

next Session of the Association. 
I). Shall be duly considered by the Council, 

c. And, if approved, shall be communicated by Circular to 

the Members of the Association for their consideration. 

d. And dealt with at the said Session of the Association. 


In Voting for ^Members of Council, or on questions connected 
with Alterations to Rules, absent Members may record their vote 
n writing. 







































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Presidents and Secretaries of the Sections of the Association. 

Date and Place. Presidents. Secretaries. 



1903. Cape Town . . ; Prof. P. D. Hahn, M.A., Prof. L. Crawford. 

j Ph.D. 

1904. Johannesburg* J. R. Wihiams. M.I.]\I.M., W. Cullen, R. T. A. Innes. 

j M.Amer.I.M.E. 

1906. Kimberley . . j J. R. Sutton, M.A. W. Gasson, A. H. J. Bourne. 

1907. Natalf i E. N. Neville, F.R.S., D. P. Raid, G. S. Bishop. 

F.R.A.S., F.C.S. 

1908. Grahamstown A. W. Roberts, D.Sc, D. Williams, G. S. Bishop. 

! F.R.A.S., F.R.S.E. i 


1909. Bloemfonteit | Prof. W. A. D. Rudge, M.A. | H. B. Austin, F. Masey. 


1903. Cape Town . . R. Marloth, M.A., Ph.D. Prof. A. Dendy. 

1904. Johannesburg G. S. Corstorphine, B.Sc, Dr. W. C. C. Pakes, W. H. 

Ph.D., F.G.S. Jollyman. 

1906. Kimberlej^ . . , Thos. Quentrall, C. E. Addams, H. Simpson. 

M.I.Mech.E., F.G.S. 


1907. Natal i C. W. Methven, M.I.C.E., R. G. Kirkbv. W. Paton. 

F.R.S.E., F.R.I. B.A. 

1908. Grahamstown Prof. E. H. L. Schwarz, Prof. G. E. Corv, R. W. New- 

A.R.C.S., F.G.S. man, J. Muller. 


1909. Bloemfontein C F. Juritz, M.A., D.Sc, Dr. G. Potts, A. Stead. 



1903. Cape Town . . ' Sir Chas. Melcalfe, Bart., A. H. Reid. 


Lieut. -Col. Sir Percy Girou- I G. S. Burt Andrews, E. J. 

ard, K.C.M.G., D.S.O. 1 ., Laschinger. 

1906. Kimberle}' .. S. J. Jennings, C.E., I D. W. Greatbatch, W. Newdi- 

M.Amer.I.M.E., M.I.M.E. \ gate. 


Lieut. -Colonel H. Watkins W. A. Squire, A. M. Neilson, 
Pitchford, F.R.C.V.S. Dr. J. E. Duerdeu. 

Prof. S. Schonland, M.A., Dr. J. Bruce Bays. W. Robert- 
Ph.D., F.L.S., C.M.Z.S. son, C. W. Mally, Dr. L. H. 


1904. Johannesburgi 

1907. Natal § .... 

1908. Grahamstown 

* IMetallurgy added in 1904. 

t Geography and Geodesy transferred to Section A and Chemistry and Metallurgy 
to Section B, in 1907. 

% Forestry added in 1904. 

§ Title changed to Section D in 1907. 



Date and Place. 




1903. Cape Town . . Thos. Muir, C.M.G., LL.D., Prof. H. E. S. Fremantle. 

F.R.S., F.R.S.E. 

1904. Johannesburg ' (Sir Percy Fitzpatrick, Howard Pirn, J. Robinson. 

M.L.A.),' E. B. Sargant, 
M.A. (Acting). , 

1906. Kiniberlev . . A. H. Watkins, M.!)., \ E. C. Lardner-Burke. E. W. 

M.R.C.S. Mowbray. 


1907. Natal ' R. D. Clark, M.A. R. A. Gowthorpe, A. S. Lang- 

ley, E. A. Belcher. 



1908. Grahamstown i E. G. Gane, :\I.A. I Prof. W. A. Macfadyen, W. D. 

I I Neilson. 


1908. Grahamstown | W. Hammond Tooke .... | Prof. A. S. Kidd. 


1909. Bloemfontein | Hugh Gunn, M.A. l G. C. Grant, Rev. Father 



Date and Place. 


Subject of Discourse. 

1903. Xape Town .. 

1904. Johannesburg 
ig(.)6. Kiniberley . . 

1907. Maritzl)urg . . 
Durban .... 

1908. Grahamstown 

1909. Bloemfontein 
Maseru .... 

Prof. W. S. Logeman, 
L.H.C., B.A. 

H. S. Hele-Shaw, LL.D., 

F.R.S., M.I.C.E. 
Prof. R. A. Lehfeldt, B.A., 

W. C. C. Fakes, L.R.C.P., 

M.R.C.S., D.P.H., F.I.C. 

R. T. A. Innes, F.R.A.S. . . 

Prof. R. B. Young, M.A., 

B.Sc, F.R.S.E., F.G.S. 
Prof. G. E. Cory, M..'\ 

A. Theiler, C.M.G., M.D. . . 

C. F. Juritz, M.A., D.Sc. 

W. Cullen 

R. T. A. Innes, F.R.A.S. 

The ruins of Persepolis and 
how the inscriptions were 

Road Locomotion — Present 
and Future. 

The Electrical aspect of Chem- 

The immunisation against 
disease of micro-organic 

Some recent problems in 

The Heroic Age of South 
African Geology. 

The history of the Eastern 

Tropical and sub-tropical 
diseases of South Africa : 
their causes aiad propagation. 

Celestial Chemistry. 

Explosives : their manufacture 

and use. 



On Monday, September 27, at 10 a.m., the Association was officially 
welcomed by the Acting Mayor (Mr. A. E. Parfitt) and Councillors 
in the Town Hall. 

At 3 p.m. the Acting Mayor and Councillors conducted the 
Members of the Association on a tour of the various Municipal 

At 4.30 p.m. the Acting Mayor and Councillors entertained the 
Association to tea in Hamilton Park. 

At 8.30 p.m.. in the Ramblers' Hall, His Excellency Sir Hamilton 
J. Goold-Adams. G.C.M.G., C.B., Governor of the Orange River 
Colony, took the chair as President, and delivered an address, for 
which see p. i. This was followed by a reception given by the 
local members of the Association. 

On Tuesdav. September 28, at 3 i).m.. Members of the Association 
proceeded on an excursion to Grey Universitv College. 

At 8.15 p.m., in the Town Hall. Dr. C. F. Juritz, M.A., F.LC, 
delivered a discourse on " Celestial Chemistry," His Excellency 
Sir Hamilton Goold-Adams presiding. 

On Wednesday. September 29. at 2.30 p.m., Members visited the 
Military Cantonments at Tem})e. where they were entertained by 
Colonel Huleatt. R.E. 

At 9 p.m. a reception was held by His Excellency Sir Hamilton 
Goold-Adams at Government House. 

On Thursday. September 30, at noon, the Seventh Annual General 
Meeting was held in the Normal College, for minutes of which see 
p. xii. 

In the afternoon excursions took place to the Government 
Experimental Farm at Grootvlei, and to the National Museum. 

At 4.30 p.m. ^Members were entertained at an At Home at Eunice 
High School. 

At 8.15 p.m., in the Town Hall, Mr. W. Cullen delivered a dis- 
course on " Explosives : how they are made and used," His 
Excellency Sir Hamilton Goold-Adams presiding. 

After the conclusion of the lecture, the President presented the 
South Africa Medal and grant to Dr. C. F. Juritz for conveyance 
to Dr. H. Bolus, F.L.S., who was unavoidably absent. For the 
proceedings see p. xxii. 

On Friday, October i, at 2.30 p.m., the Railway Workshops were 
inspected by Members, and at 4 p.m. an At Home was held by 
Mrs. Murdoch Anderson at " Fairholme." 

At 8.30 p.m. a Conversazione was given by the O.R.C. Arts 
and Crafts Association. 

On Saturday, October 2, at 8.15 ]\m., in the Court House, Maseru, 
Mr. R. T. A. Innes, F.R.iV.S.. delivered a discourse on " Astronomy," 
Mr. H. C. Sloley, Resident Commissioner for Basutoland, presiding. 



Chainnaii, H.E. Sir Hamilton Goold-Adams. G.CAI.G., C.B. ; 
Local Secretaries. Prof. G. Potts. M.Sc, Ph.D.. A. Stead. B.Sc. 
F.C.S. ; W. H. Barrett. C. L. Botha, M.L.A., H. Gunn, M.A., I\I. 
Leviseur. J. "SI. Tilley. 


Chair ma }i. His Worship the Mayor of Bloemfontein (C. L. Botha, 
M.L.A.) ; Vice-Chair man. A. E. Parfitt : Secretaries, R. C. Streeten, 
B.A.. LL.B., G. Brebner, M.A., LL.B. : Mrs. C. L. Botha. Miss 
Firks. Miss E. S. le Roux, Miss E. C. Steedman, M.A., Hon. A. 
Fischer. M.L.A. . General Hertzog. ^NI.L.A., Hon. Dr. Ramsliottom, 
M.L.A.. Hon. C. H. Wessels. M.L.A.. Hon. J. D. Palmer, M.L.C., 
Sir John G. Eraser, M.L.A.. A. G. Barlow. :M.L.A.. J. P. Steyl, 
M.L.A., Chief Justice Sir Andries Maasdorp, General Townsend, 
Colonel Huleatt, R.E. : the Officers Commanding. 5th Dragoon 
Guards, the Welsh Regiment, Royal Army Medical Corps, and 
Army Service Corps : Major Apthorp, the Rt. Rev. the Lord Bishop 
of Bloemfontein (Dr. Chandler), the Very Rev. Dean Hulme, Rev. 
Canon Bate, Rev. Canon Orford, the Revs. J. Boshoff, Evans, 
J. Franklin, Father A. D. Kelly, Z. Lawrence. Father Miller, C. 
Murray, A. C. Read, James Scott, and Thomson : Drs. P. Targett 
Adams, Flockemann, Swift, Vellacott, A. B. Ward. G. Pratt Yule ; 
Messrs. P. F. Burnet Adams, M. Anderson, H. B. Austin, C. P. Beck, 
J. F. Bevan, F. Blake, Boesiken, J. Collie. W. Crawford, W. Ehrlich, 
D. G. A. Falck, N. Farquharson, P. J. Faure, W. Fitzgerald. A. E. 
Fichardt, J. Fitchat. H. F. Gill, I. H. Haarburger, D. Horwell, 
Bedvers Jackson, Prof. W. S. Johnson. Kampfraath, W. A. Roller, 
W. Lambon, James Lyle. H. S. Mackintosh. J. C. N. Marais, A. 
McGillovay, W. Mungeam, A. L. Nathan. G. A. Northcroft. W. 
Olds. W. J. Palmer, J. S. :\I. Rabie, C. J. Reitz. Prof. W. A. Douglas- 
Rudge, Courtney Shaw. Geo. Smetham. (j. A. Stewart, J. W. G. 
Steyn. C. J. Tate, M. du Toit. T. F. Torbett, A. de Villiers, R. G. 
Vorster. and E. E. Watkeys. 



President. Professor W. A. Douglas Rudge. M.A.. Bloemfontein ; 
Vice-Presidents, Messrs. J. R. Sutton, M.A., D.Sc, E. Nevill. F.R.S., 
A. W. Roberts, D.Sc. F.R.A.S., Sir Chas. Metcalfe, C. W. Methven, 
F.R.I.B.A. [ex-ofwio). P. F. Burnett Adams, M.LC.E., IM.I.M.E., 
H. Baker, F.R.I.B.A.. G. Baumann, F. Flowers, J:^.R.A.S.. Colonel 
Huleatt, R.E., R. T. A. Innes, F.R.A.S., R. N. Kotze, M.E., B.A., 
Prof. R. A. Lehfeldt. D.Sc, J. Vy\Q, M.A., Prof. J. Orr, B.Sc, 
A.M.I.C.E., A, M. Robeson, G. "A. Stewart, j. A. Vaughan, 
M.I.Mech.E., E. J. Way, M.L:\I.M., W. S. Whitworth, and Prof. 


J. H. Woolston, B.A. ; Secretaries, H. B. Austin, F.R.A.S., F. 




President, C. F. Juritz, M.A., D.Sc, F.I.C. ; Vice-Presidents, 
Prof. P. D. Hahn, Ph.D., J. R. Williams, M.I.M.M., R. Marloth, 
M.A., Ph.D., G. S. Corstoi-phine, Ph.D., F.G.S., Captain T. Quen- 
trall, F.G.S., Lieut.-Colonel H. Watkins-Pitchford, F.R.C.V.S., 
Prof. E. H. L. Schwarz, A.R.C.S., F.G.S., Prof. S. Schonland, M.A., 
Ph.D.. F.L.S. (ex-officio) ; P. Targett Adams, M.R.C.S., D.P.H., 
C. D. H. Braine. A.M.I.C.E., W. Cullen, J. Burtt-Davy. F.L.S., 
A. von Dessauer, M.E., Prof. J. E. Duerden, Ph.D., I. B. Pole- 
Evans, B.Sc. W. Johnson. L.R.C.S., L.R.C.P., M. Leviseur, J. 
Moir. D.Sc, F.C.S., C. W. Howard, B.A.. W. J. Palmer. B.S.Agr., 
T. R. Sim, F. B. Smith, Miss E. C. Steedman, M.A.. Prof. G. H. 
Stanley, A.R.S.M., A. M. A. Struben, Dr. E. Warren, Prof. J. A. 
Wilkinson, M.A., F.CS. ; Secretaries. Prof. Geo. Potts, Ph.D., 
M.Sc, Arthm- Stead, B.Sc, F.C.S. 




President, Hugh Gunn, M.A. ; I'ice-Presidents, Dr. T. ]\Iuir, 

C.M.G., F.R.S., Dr. A. H. Watkins, R. D. Clark, M.A., E. G. Gane, 

M.A., W. Hammond Tooke (ex-officio) ; A. Aiken, F.S.A.A.. Dr. J. 

Brill, D.Litt., W. E. C. Clarke. M.A., J. H. Dutton, M.A., S. Evans, 

Miss E. M. Firks, J. A. Foote, F.G.S., F.E.I.S., Rev. E. Jacottet, 

Rev. H. A. Junod. T. W. Lowden, Sir Andries Maasdorp, B.A., 

Rev. Canon H. W. Orford, M.A., Howard Pim, F.C.A. ; T. Reunert ; 

Secretaries, C. C. Grant, M.A., Rev. Father Norton, S.S.M. 


(Held ill the Normal College, Bloenifoiitein, on Thursday. September 

30, 1909.) 

Present : H.E. Sir Hamilton Goold- Adams, (i.C.M.G. (Presi- 
dent) in the chair, and amongst others : Messrs. H. B. Austin, 
W. H. Barrett, G. Baumann, G. W. Cook, W. Cullen. F. Flowers, 
J. A. Foote, C. C. Grant. J. Gray, J. G. Hatchard. A. L. Hewitt, 
Dr. C. F. Juritz. Prof. A. S. Kidd, Rev. Dr. Kolbe. Dr. Leech, 
Messrs. T. W. Lowden, W. G. P. Macmuldrow, Dr. J. Moir, Mr. 
J. M. P. Muirhead. Rev. Father Norton, Rev. Canon Orford, 
Dr. G. Potts, Prof. W. A. D. Rudge, Dr. ^Slax Rindl, Messrs. T. C. 
Robson, T. E. Scaife, Prof. E. H. L. Schwarz, Prof. G. H. Stanley, 
Mr. A. Stead, Miss B. Stoneman, Mr. A. E. Viney, Prof. J. A. 
Wilkinson, Miss Wilman, Dr. R. A. Lehfeldt (Hon.Gen.Treasurer), 
Mr. R. T. A. Innes (Hon. General Secretary) and Mr. Fred. Row- 
land (Assistant General Secretary). 


Minutes. — The Minutes of the Annual General Meeting held 
on the loth July. 1908. printed in the Report of the Grahamstown 
Meeting, were confirmed. 

Annual Report of Council. — Mr. R. T. A. Innes (Hon. General 
Secretary) read the Annual Report of the Council on the work of 
the past year (see p. xv). 

Report of the Hon. Treasurer and Statement of Accounts 
FOR 1908-1909. — On the proposal of Mr. Muirhead, these were taken 
as read, as they had been exhibited in the Reception Room for the 
information of members for three days (see pp. xix-xxi). 

Dr. Juritz moved and Mr. Cullen seconded the adoption of the 
Annual Reports and Accounts. 

Prof. Schwarz moved : " That the Annual Volume of Proceed- 
ings be continued as heretofore." This was seconded by Canon 
Orford, and. after some discussion, the motion was put to the 
meeting and lost by 30 votes to 3. 

The Reports and Accounts were then adopted. 

South Africa Medal Committee. — On the proposal of Mr. 
Flowers, seconded by Dr. Potts, it was resolved that Dr. Juritz, 
Mr. W. Cullen. Dr. A. Theiler and Mr. E. Nevill be elected members 
of this Committee until 191 2. in the place of Dr. Hyslop. Dr. 
Gilchrist, Mr. Struben and Mr. Innes. whose retirement had been 
determined b^' lot. The Committee now consists of the following 
members : Dr. J. C. Beattie, Dr. L. Crawford, Dr. A. H. Watkins, 
and Mr. J. Lyle, who retire in 1910 ; Mr. S. S. Hough, Dr. S. Schon- 
land, Mr. T. Reunert, and Dr. G. S. Corstorphine, who retire in 
191 1 ; and Dr. C. F. Juritz. Mr. W. Cullen, Dr. A. Theiler, and Mr. 
E. Nevill, who retire in 1912. 

Notices of Motion. — In view of the resolutions contained in 
the Annual Report of the Council, which had been adopted, Prof. 
Kidd and Dr. Potts (with the consent of the meeting) withdrew 
the notices of motion standing in their names, reading as follows : 
— Prof. Kidd : " That Rule X. of the Constitution be amended by 
substituting for the word ' Cape Town ' therein, the word 
' Johannesburg.' " Dr. Potts : " That steps be taken to render 
more money available for the purposes of publication." 

Meeting in 1910. — Invitations from the Governor-General of 
Mozambique and from the Mayor of Cape Town, to hold the meeting 
in 1910 in Lourenco Marques and Cape Town, respectively, were 
read, and the recommendation of the Council that the invitation 
from Cape Town be accepted for 1910, and that, if possible, the 
invitation from Lourenco Marques be accepted for 1911. was 
agreed to. 

Election of Council for 1909-1910. — The following were then 
elected as Members of Council for 1909-1910 : — 

Bloemfontein : Mr. Hugh Gunn, M.A., Dr. G. Potts, M.Sc, Ph.D.. 
and Mr. A. Stead, B.Sc, F.C.S. Cape Peninsula: Mr. A. Walsh 
Dr. C. F. Juritz, M.A., D.Sc, F.T.C., Mr. J. M. P. Muirhead, F.R.S.L. 
Dr. R. Marloth, M.A., Ph.D., Rev. Wm. Flint, D.D., Prof. P. D. 
Hahn, M.A., Ph.D. Durban: Dr. A. Mackenzie, M.D., C.M.^ 
M.R.C.S. East London and KingKnlliamstown : Mr. G. Rattray, 
M.A., B.Sc, F.R.G.S. Grahamstoiv)i : Prof. E. H. L. Schwarz^ 


A.R.C.S., F.G.S., Prof. A. S. Kidd, M.A. Kimherley : Dr. A. H. 
Watkins, M.D., M.R.C.S. Pietermariizhurg : Lieut. -Colonel H. 
Watkins Pitchford, F.R.C.V.S. Pretoria : Mr. J. Burtt-Davy, 
F.L.S., Dr. A. Theiler. C.M.G., Mr. G. W. Herdman, M.A., M.I.C.E., 
Mr. A. M. A. Struben. A.:M.I.C.E. Queenstown : Mr. E. D. Barker. 
Kriigersdorp : Mr. T. W. Lovvden. Louren<;o Marques : Mr. C. W. 
Howard, B.A. Witwatersrand : Dr. G. S. Corstorphine, F.G.S., 
Mr. A. von Dessauer, M.E., Mr. F. Flowers, F.R.A.S., F.R.G.S., 
Mr. J. A. Foote, F.G.S., F.E.I.S., Dr. G. E. Murray, M.D.. F.R.C.S., 
Dr. J. Moir, M.A.. D.Sc, F.C.S., Prof. J. Orr. B.Sc. A.M.I.C.E., 
Prof. G. H. Stanley, A.R.S.M., M.I.M.M. 

The following are the members of Council, ex-officio : — Past 
Presidents : Sir David Gill, Sir Chas. Metcalfe, Mr. T. Reunert, Mr. 
Gardner F. Williams, Dr. J. Hyslop, H.E. Sir Walter Hely- 
Hutchinson.'H.E. Sir Hamilton Goold- Adams. 

Past Hon. General Secretaries : Mr. W. Cullen, Dr. J. D. F. 
Gilchrist and Mr. R. T. A. Innes. 

Past Hon. General Treasurers : Mr. Howard Pirn, Mr. W. D. 
Morton, Dr. J. McCrae, and Dr. R. A. Lehfeldt. 

General Business. — The following recommendation to the new 
Council, submitted by Prof. J. A. Wilkinson, was agreed to : " That 
in future some attempts should be made by the Council to acquaint 
members with the annual or other reports before submission for 
approval at the Annual General Meeting." 

On the proposal of Mr. T. E. Scaife, seconded by Dr. Juritz, the 

following motion was adopted : " That a sub-section dealing with 

Irrigation be added to the proceedings at the next annual meeting." 

Votes of Thanks. — The following votes of thanks, submitted by 

^Ir. I\luirhead, were carried by acclam.ation : — 

To H.E. the President, Sir H. Goold-Adams, for ])residing 
over the various meetings, and his hospitality together with 
his expressed sympathy with the work of the x\ssociation, 
which His Excellency acknowledged in a few well-chosen words. 
To the Mayor, Deputy Mayor, Town Councillors and citizens 
of Bloemfontein ; the Director of Education ; ]\Iiss Firks, 
Mr. G. W. Cook, and the Management of the Normal College; 
the Principal and Senate of the Grey University College, and 
the Grey College School ; Colonel Huleatt, R.E., Mrs. Huleatt, 
and Officers of the Garrison at Tempe ; the Director of Agri- 
culture, and the staffs at the Experimental Farms at Grootvlei 
and Tweespruit ; ""the Hon. Secretaries and members of the 
Bloemfontein Reception Committee ; the Hon. Secretary and 
members of the Hospitality Committee ; the Hon. Secretary 
and memebrs of the Excursions Committee ; the Hon. Secre- 
tary and members of the Basutoland Committee ; the Hon. 
Secretaries of the Bloemfontein Local Committee, Dr. G. Potts 
and Mr. A. Stead, for their invaluable work in making the 
meeting such a great success ; the Hon. .Secretaries of the 
several Sectional Committees ; the several South African 
Railway Administrations, and especially Mr. W. H. Barrett, 
the Chief Traffic Manager at Bloemfontein, for his vmfailing 
courtesy and assistance ; the Chairman and members of the 


Bloemfontein Club ; Mrs. Murdoch Anderson ; the O.R.C. 
Arts and Crafts Association ; Miss E. Steedman and staff of 
the Eunice High School ; and the Hon. Auditors, Mr. M. B. 
Gardner (Johannesburg) and Mr. J. M. P. Muirhead (Cape 
The meeting then closed. 


JUNE. igoQ. 

1. Your Council submit the following report upon the work of 
the Association for the past year. 

2. The Statement of Account and Balance-sheet, together with 
the Annual Report of the Hon. General Treasurer, are submitted 
for your approval. In accordance with the Council's recommenda- 
tion api)roved by the last Annual General Meeting of members, the 
general and administrative expenses of the Association have been 
greatly reduced, viz., by about 33 per cent., being £243 for 1908-09 
against £353 during the precechng year. It will be noticed that 
the cost of printing Volumes IV. and V. (Natal and Grahamstown 
Meetings) came into this year's (1908-09) account, the total being 
^^403 7s. 9d. The last Annual Meeting approved the suggestion 
made to withdraw on loan from the invested funds the sum of 
£300 for publication expenses, the balance cost of /103 being paid 
out of the ordinary funds. 

3. The membership again shows a considerable and regrettable 
decrease. The figures for 1907-08 were as follows : Life Members, 
28 ; Annual Members, 739. For the year 1908-09 the figures are : 
Life Members, 29 ; Annual Members, 608 (including members one 
year in arrear) — a decrease of 130, of which number 113 were struck 
off the register by reason of non-payment of subscriptions for two 
years. Your Council believes that the worst has now been reached, 
and that an improvement may be expected in the near future. 
The question of making the Association more attractive to its 
members and of further reducing administration expenses has had 
the earnest consideration of your Council during the past year, and 
the following proposals are now laid before you : — 

(i) That in order to increase the efficiency of the administra- 
tion and to reduce the administrative expenses, the administra- 
tion of the Association be centred in a single office. 

(2) That the monthly Journal which the Council j/roposes 
to substitute for the Annual Reports hitherto issued, should 
be one of forty-eight pages ; that it should contain the papers 
read at the Annual Meeting and, as far as possible, the discus- 
sions thereon, together with notices of meetings and proceed- 
ings of kindred Societies and other suitable matter ; that the 
Journal should be the official medium of communication with 
the members of the Association, and that the monthly parts 
be adapted to rebinding in style uniform vv^ith the Annual 
Reports previously issued. 

(3) That in the event of Cape Tov/n immediately under- 
takingjjthe editing and publication of the Journal, in accordance 


with the previous recommendation, and the administration of 
the Association, the present headquarters be the single 
administrative centre. In the event of Cape Town being 
unable to carry out these duties the centre be transferred to 
Johannesburg until after the next Annual General Meeting. 

(4) That a Council meeting be held at least once a month, 
and that at least fourteen days before such a meeting the 
agenda be circulated to each member of the Council who may 
record his vote on each item in writing or by telegraph ; but 
the actual members of the Council present at the meeting may 
decide to have a re-vote upon any particular resolution. Any 
member of the Council recording his vote in writing or by 
telegraph as above suggested shall be considered for the pur- 
poses of forming a quorum as present at the discussion upon 
which his vote is recorded. 

(5) That within seven days of each Council meeting, the 
minutes be circulated to all members of Council ; that the 
voting on each division be shown thereon, with the names of 
the voters. 

4. Grants for Research. — The state of the funds of the 
Association did not allow of any apphcations for grants being 
considered. An interim report on the grant made to Dr. A. W. 
Roberts has been received, and it is anticipated that further reports 
will come to hand on the work done by Dr. J. D. F. Gilchrist and 
Mr. J. Stuart Thomson in connection with the grants made to them. 

5. South Africa Medal Fund. — The Medal Committee has 
recommended that the second award of the South Africa Medal and 
a grant of £50 should be made to Dr. Harry Bolus, F.L.S., which 
recommendation has been adopted by the Council. The grounds 
on which the award is made will be voiced by the President in 
making the presentation. 

The Fund, which amounts to £1,376, is at present invested in a 
Cape Treasury Bill, and continues to draw interest at the rate of 
4 per cent, per annum. 

You will be asked at this meeting to elect four representatives 
on the Medal Committee, who will hold office until 1912. The four 
members retiring this year as drawn by lot are Dr. J. D. F. Gil- 
christ, Dr. J. Hyslop, Mr. R. T. A. Innes and Mr. A, M. A. Struben. 
It is a recommendation from the Council that only those who are 
likely to be available to record their votes should be elected to this 
Committee in future, as considerable difficulty was experienced 
this year owing to the absence of some of the m.embers. 

6. Lectures. — ^Two series of Lectures have been arianged 
during the past session. 

Under the auspices of the Association, the South African Lectures 
for 1909 were delivered by Mr. J. Arthur Thomson, Regius Professor 
of Natural History in the University of Aberdeen. In view of the 
Darwin Centenary, Professor Thomson chose for his subject 
" Darwinism and Human Life." In a series of six lectures he dealt 
with " What we owe to Darwin," " The Web of Life," " The 
Struggle for Existence," " The Raw Materials of Evolution," 
" Facts of Inheritance," " Selection, Organic and Social." These 


lectures were delivered in the following towns : — Cape Town. 
Stellenbosch, Bloemfontein, Johannesburg, Pretoria, Germiston. 
Modderfontein, Boksburg, Krugersdorp, Heidelberg, Durban, 
Maritzburg, East London, Grahamstown and Port Elizabeth. The 
lectures were a phenomenal success, and for the first time have been 
self-supporting. The Council has in former reports pointed out 
the great educational value of these South African lectures and all 
that they mean in the intellectual life of a comparatively new 
country. Sufficient to say that they are now assured from year to 
year, and care will be taken to bring to this country only distin- 
guished scholars. It may be of interest to mention that Professor 
Thomson's lectures will be published about Christmas under the 
title " Darwinism and Human Life ; the South African Lectures 
for 1909." 

A series of six lectures on subjects of general interest given by 
Specialists in South Africa at the Transvaal University College, 
Johannesburg, was initiated by a committee of the Association, 
supported by a grant from the Witwatersrand Council of Education, 
and these are open to the public on payment of one shilling. The 
lecturers and subjects were as follows : — 

Professor Fouche, " Early Colonists of the Cape " ; Mr. R. T. 
A. Innes, " Modern Telescopes " ; Professor J. Purves, " Camoens 
and the Epic of Africa " ; Professor A. Lord, " Tradition Dogma 
and Experiment in Morality " ; Dr. R. A. Lchfeldt, "Scientific 
Study of the Production of Wealth " ; and General Aston, " A 
proposed Military School for South Africa." The first four of these 
have already been delivered, and the latter two will be given on 
the 30th October and 27th November respectively. Your thanks 
are due to the Council of Education for the grant which enabled 
the series to be inaugurated, and to Dr. R. A. Lehfeldt, who under- 
took the organisation of the lectures with the co-operation of a 
local committee. 

7. Report of the Grahamstown Meeting, 1908. — ^This was 
published and distributed last February. The Council desires to 
place on record its thanks to Professor S. Schonland, who acted as 
Chairman of the Publication Committee and Editor, and to his 
coadjutors. The promptitude with which this report was published 
was ver}? gratifying. 

8. Transvaal Observatory. — In May a deputation, consisting 
of Mr. T. Reunert, Mr. F. C. Dumat, Mr. Raymond, Mr. W. 
Schumacher and Mr. W. CuUen, waited on the Minister of Lands 
(Transvaal), the Hon. J. F. B. Rissik, M.L.A., with regard to the 
provision of a powerful telescope for the Transvaal Observatory. 
The Minister was very sympathetic, and the Council has since 
learned with gratification that the Transvaal Government has 
ordered a 26-inch visual refractor for the Observatory. The 
telescope will be the second largest of its class in the British Empire, 
being exceeded in size only by the 28-inch visual refractor at 
Greenwich. It will be remembered that the foundation of the 
Transvaal Observatory in 1903 was the result of a petition to the 
Government of the day by this Association in 1902. 

9. Standing Committees.- — The following Standing Committees 


are in existence : Educational Standing Committee, Anthropo- 
logical Standing Committee and Forestry Standing Committee ; 
but, owing to a number of members being away on holidays and 
other causes, no reports have been received from them during the 
past year. 

An amount of £20 has been received from the Transvaal Govern- 
ment as a grant towards the objects of the Anthropological Com- 
mittee, which has not yet been expended, the works of this 
Committee being held in abeyance pending the result of the repre- 
sentations which were being made to the Transvaal Government. 

10. Prize Scheme. — A suggestion was considered by your Council 
regarding the advisability or otherwise of inaugurating a Prize 
Scheme for the purpose of arousing a greater interest in science 
amongst students. A forward movement has now been made. 
Our President, H.E. Sir Hamilton Goold-Adams, has offered the 
Association a die for medals to be awarded annually, which your 
Council has gratefully accepted, and the medals to be struck and 
so awarded will be entitled the Goold-Adams Medals. 

11. Standardising Laboratory. — Following a resolution passed 
at the Natal Meeting in 1907 the question of a Standardising Labora- 
tory was discussed at length by the Johannesburg Council, and 
eventually a deputation from that Council waited upon the Acting 
Premier of the Transvaal and urged the establishment of such an 
Institution. The Minister, who was most sympathetic in his 
attitude, promised to bring the subject before his colleagues on 
their return from England, and it is hoped that the Government 
will be induced to give the matter their activ'e support. 

12. Meeting in iqio. — Cordial invitations have been received 
from the Mayor of Cape Town and the Government of ^Mozambique to 
hold the next annuil meeting at Cape Town and Lourenco ^Marques 
(Delagoa Bay). In view of the Union of South Africa, your Council 
recommends that the invitation from Cape Town should be accepted 
for next year, and that if possible the invitation from Lourenco 
]Marques be accepted for 191 1. 

It is hoped that H.R.H. the Prince of Wales will be induced to 
accept the office of President for the Cape Town Meeting. 

13. General. — During the year Dr. J. McCrae, the Honorary 
Treasurer, resigned the position on account of his leaving for 
England on leave, and the Council appointed Dr. R. A. Lehfeldt 
to the position thus vacated. 

Your thanks are due to the foregoing gentlemen, and to the 
Hon. General Secretaries, Dr. Gilchrist and Mr. Innes, and to Mr. 
Cullen, who acted for Mr. Innes during the latter's absence in 
England ; and for many services rendered during the past year : 
to the Hon. Auditors, Mr. J. M. P. Muirhead (Cape Town) and 
Mr. M. B, Gardner (Johannesburg) for kindly auditing the Associa- 
tion's accounts ; to Dr. Schonland, Professors Ogg, Kidd and 
Schwarz, and Messrs. Mally, Gane and Hammond-Tooke, the 
Publication Committee responsible for the report of the Grahams- 
town Meeting, who accomplished much good work in that 
connection, and to the members of the South Africa Medal Com- 


ENDED 30TH JUNE. iqoq. 

In submitting the Statement of Revenue and Expenditure and 
the Balance-sheet of the Association for the past year I wish to 
make the following remarks : — 

It will be noticed with regret that the slight improvement shown 
last year has not been maintained. The receipts from all sources 
amount to £454 19s. 3d., as against £732 2s. gd., a decrease of 
revenue of ^277 3s. 6d.. of which amount £248 represents the 
decrease in subscriptions for the current year. This is clue to the 
non-payment of subscriptions by over 300 members, without 
taking into account the fact that over 100 members, in addition, 
are automatically taken off the roll by reason of their subscriptions 
being two years in arrear. In accordance with the Council's 
recommendation a considerable saving has been effected in the 
total administrative expenses, as, excluding special items, the 
reduction from £457 2s. 7d. to £298 19s. iid., or £158 2S. 8d. in 
all may be seen, a quite appreciable difference. During the period 
under review, however, £403 has been spent in the publication 
and distribution of the Natal and Grahamstown Reports, whereas 
last year nothing was spent on publications. The result has been 
that the total expenditure exceeds the revenue by some £247. 
If the members who are in arrear had only met their obligations 
we should have had a small surplus to record, and it would have 
been possible to refund the loan from the Endowment Fund which 
was authorised and paid into the current account during the year. 
Apart from the loan we only owe £20. and there is a cash balance 
of about £158 IDS. in the bank. The amount of £66 17s. 3d., 
originally voted for research, but which by the forbearance of 
the grantees has not been expended, has been written off. The 
Endowment Fund has been increased by £56, the amount received 
during the year for entrance fees and a Life Membership fee. 

It is possible and quite probable if the proposal to establish a 
monthly Journal is endorsed by the Annual Meeting that members, 
who find themselves unable to attend the annual meetings, will be 
encouraged to take a greater interest in the Association and its 
work, and that doing so, their subscriptions will be paid more 
promptlj^ and regularly. If this should be the case I believe this, 
the lowest point in our particular depression, has been reached, 
and that an early improvement may be looked for and attained. 
The proposal, if adopted, to remove the headquarters from Cape 
Town to Johannesburg and to thus centralise the work of the 
Association should also tend towards economy and greater 


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(Raised hy Members of the Britisli Association in connneinnirilion of their'visit 
to Soiit/i Africa in 1905.) 

In the unavoidable absence of Dr. H. Bolus, to whom the Medal 
had been awarded. His Excellency Sir Hamilton Goold-Adams, 
President of the Association, after the conclusion of Mr. Cullen's 
lecture in the Town Hall, Bloemfontein, on Thursday, September 
30, handed the Medal to Dr. C. F. Juritz for conveyance to Dr. 
Bolus. In doing so His Excellency said : " Before we leave this 
evening I have a very j)leasant task to perform. This opportunity 
will be taken by me for presenting to a representative of Dr. Harry 
Bolus, F.L.S.. the South Africa Medal, annually awarded by this 
Association. The South Africa Medal was founded by the members 
of the British Association to commemorate their meeting in South 
Africa in 1905. After their return to England a sum of money was 
collected by that Association for the purpose of furnishing annually 
a medal and a sum of money to be given to persons whose scientific 
work is likely to be usefully continued by them in the future. Last 
year the distinction fell to Dr. Theiler of the Transvaal. The 
Medal for iqcq and a Grant of ^^50 has been awarded by the Council 
of the vSouth African Association to Dr. Harry Bolus, Fellow of the 
Linnaean Society. 

" Dr. Harry Bolus is a gentleman of the age of 75 years, born 
in England, who arrived in South Africa about fifty years ago 
and commenced the study of botany at Graaff-Reinet with the 
late Professor Guthrie. Since then, animated by the true scientific 
spirit, and seeking no reward, he has devoted the best years of a 
long life to the advancement of the knowledge of South African 
Botany. ' He has made numerous botanical trips, including 
Namaqualand in 1883, Delagoa Bay in 1886, Pondoland and the 
country about the Mont-aux-Sources in 1896, Transvaal in 1904, 
and Swaziland in 1905. His reputation as a systematic botanist 
is world wide and deservedly, high. On two of the most difficult 
groups of South African plants, viz., the heaths and the orchids, 
he is the leading authority. His monograph on heaths, published 
three years ago, will for many years remain the standard work of 
the group. His illustrated account of the orchids of the Cape 
Peninsula, published in 1888. and his descriptions of 100 species 
of South African orchids, profusely illustrated by his own drawings, 
are the only works dealing comprehensively with the subject. His 
classical paper on the Flora of South Africa from a geographical 
point of view, first published in 1888 and since revised and re- 
printed in English and German, was the first satisfactory account 
of the complex relations of the flora of the sub-continent, and is 
still the most important work on the subject. 

" The pages of the Journal of the Linnaean Society and the 
Transactions of the South African Philosophical Society bear 
testimony to his careful research. He has exerted a quiet though 
powerful influence on botanical research in the sub-continent. 

S.A. Assn. for Adv. of Science. 

1909. PL. 1. 

; • f^' 'r ! 

< g^""" ''"l " 

The South Africa Medal. 


The Council are paying a graceful compliment to a man who has 
done so much for South Africa, and I feel it an honour to be the 
medium through which the public recognition of those services 
is expressed by the bestowal upon him of this the second medal 
so kindly given to this country by the British Association, to whom 
we owe a debt of gratitude for their generosity in anmxally providing 

" No one regrets more than I do that Dr. Bolus is unable to 
attend here personally. The Association received a telegram from 
him to-day expressing his grateful appreciation of this valued marK 
of honour, and stating that he regretted much that he could not 
possibly attend this meeting to tender his heartfelt thanks 

His Excellency thereupon handed the medal and cheque to 
Dr. Juritz, who, on behalf of Dr. Bolus, thanked His Excellency 
for presenting and the Council for awarding the medal. He would 
esteem it a great privilege to convey this distinction to so worthy 
a recipient, and would not fail to express to Dr. Bolus the kind 
sentiments to which His Excellency had given utterance and which 
he felt sure Dr. Bolus would greatly appreciate. 

On the I2th October, at Cape Town, in the presence of members 
of the Council of the Association and others, Mr. J. M. P. Muirhead 
Vice-President, presiding, Dr. Juritz formally presented the medal, 
and grant to Dr. Bolus, quoting the remarks made by Sir Hamilton 
Goold- Adams when handing him the medal at Bloemfontein, and 
expressing his sense of the honour he felt at having been privileged 
to represent Dr. Bohis there. 

Dr. Bolus bri'^fly expressed his thanks. 

AWARD FOR 1910. 

Notice is hereby given that nominations for the recipient of the 
award for igio will be received by the Assistant General Secretary 
of the Association, P.O. Box 1497, Cape Town, up to and including 
31st January, 1910. 

/. — Constitution of Committee. 

{a) The Council of the South African Association for the Advancement of 
Science shall, annually and within three months after the close of the Annual 
Session, elect a Committee to be called " the South Africa ]\Iedal Committee " 
on which, as far as possible, every Section of the Association and each Colony 
of South Africa shall have fair representation. 

(b) This Committee shall consist of a Chairman and not less than seven 
members, elected from amongst Council Members ; and shall have power to 
add to its number additional members, not exceeding one-third of the original 
selected from members of the Association who are not on its Council. 

(c) One-third of the members of this Committee shall retire annually by 
rotation, but shall be eligible for re-election. 

II. — Duties. 

(a) The duties of the Committee shall be to administer the Income of the 
Fund and to award the Medal, raised in commemoration of the visit of the 
British Association to South Africa in 1905, in accordance with the resolution 
of its Council. 


(b) This resolution reads as follows : — 

(i) That, in accordance with the wishes of subscribers, the South 
Africa INIeclal Fund be invested in the names of the Trustees 
appointed by the South African Association for the Advancement 
of Science ; 

(2) That the Dies for the Medal be transferred to the Association, to 
which, in its corporate capacity, the administration of the Fund 
and the award of the Medal shall be, and is hereby, entrusted, 
under the conditions specified in the Report of the Medal Com- 
(r) The terms of conveyance are as follows : — 

(i) That the Fund be devoted to the preparation of a Die for a Medal, 
to be struck in Bronze, 2 J inches in diameter ; and that the balance 
be invested and the annual income held in trust. 

(2) That the Medal and income of the Fund be awarded by the South 

African Association for the Advancement of Science for achieve- 
ment and promise in scientific research in South Africa. 

(3) That, so far as circumstances admit, the award be made annually. 
(d) The British Association has expressed a desire that the award sliall be 

made only to those persons whose Scientihc work is likely to be usefully 
continued by them in the future. 

///. — Awards. 

(a) Any individual engaged in Scientific research in South Africa shall be 
eligible to receive the award. 

(b) The Medal and the available balance of one year's income from the 
Fund shall be awarded to one candidate only in each year (save in the case 
of joint research) ; to any candidate once only ; and to no member of the 
Medal Committee. 

(c) Nominations for the recipient of the award may be made by any member 
of the South African Association for the Advancement of Science, and shall be 
submitted to the Medal Committee not later than six months after the close 
of the Annual Session. 

(d) The Medal Committee shall recommend the recipient of the award to 
the Council, provided the recommendation is carried by the vote of at least 
a majority of three-fourths of its members, voting verbally or by letter, and 
submitted to the Council at least one month prior to the Annual Session 
for confirmation. 

(e) The award shall be made by the full Council of the South African 
Association for the Advancement of Science after considering the recommen- 
dations of the Medal Committee, provided it is carried by the vote of a majority 
of its members, given in writing or verbally. 

(/) The Council shall have the right to withhold the award in any year, and 
to devote the funds rendered available thereby, in a subsequent award or 
awards, provided the stipulation contained in the second term of conveyance 
of the British Association is adhered to. 

(g) No alteration shall be made in these Rules except under the condition 
specified in Rule 16 of the Association's Constitution reading : — , ^^ 
Any proposed alteration of the Rules ^ 

{a) Shall be intimated to the Council Three months before the next 

Session of the Association. 
(b) Shall be duly considered by the Council. 

(r) And, if approved, shall be communicated by circular to tlie Mem- 
bers of the Association for their consideration, 
((f) And dealt with at the said Session of the Association. 
Should a member of the Medal Committee accept nomination for the Award 
he will forfeit his seat on the Committee 


As all its members are aware, this Association, following along the lines of 
the British Association, has hitherto published the reports of its proceedings 
in Annual Volumes. Owing to a large diminution in members, the Council 
has carefully considered the ways and means of enlarging the Associations' 
scope and of increasing its attractiveness. It was felt to be desirable not 
only that members should be kept in closer and more constant touch with the 
Association, but also that amongst those who are not yet members a wider 
interest in scientific matters should be awakened. The advantage was. more- 
over, recognised of establishing a link with and amongst the several scientific 
institutions of this sub-continent, and it was thought that by such means 
the Association would be enaliled to give that " stronger impulse to scientific 
enquiry " which forms one of the root-ideas of its Constitution. After long 
delijjeration, the Council decided, in promotion of the above objects, to 
replace the Annual Report by a monthly Journal, and to entrust the editing 
of the latter to Dr. C. F. Juritz. The present issue is the first tangible result 
of the decision so arrived at. The express function of the Journal is therefore 
that of stimulating Science in South Africa. As a monthly publication it 
will give members all the value which the former annual volumes possessed 
— for it is not intended to depart, in any essential feature, from the best 
and most complete of those earlier volumes ; but, in addition, it will possess 
the merit of placing in the hands of members nicest of the papers read at the 
previous annual meeting, within a very much shorter time than had been 
possible under the old conditions. 


Institution of Electrical Engineers (Cape Town Section). — Monday, 
August 9th : Prof. H. Bohle, M.I.E.E., President, in the chair. — " Elevators ": 
A. Vaux- The author de.scribed various classes and types of elevators, 
suggesting improvements in connection with their designing and installation, 
and discussing briefly the possibility of their local manufacture. 

Chemical, Metallurgical and Mining Society of South Africa. — 
Saturday, September iSth : A. McArthur Johnston, M.A., M.I.M.M., F.C.S., 
President, in the chair. — " The small cyanide plant as erected and worked in 
Rhodesia " : F. J. Thomas- Nearly a hundred of these have been installed 
in the last ten years. Their construction and the method adopted for working 
them was descrilied. — " Method for the recovery of zinc from solutions of 
sulphate " : W. Cullen and G. F. Ayers- A process was described for 
recovering zinc slimes from zinc used in the precipitation of gold by the 
addition of an emulsion of magnesium hydrate. — " Analyses of gases from 
burning nitro-glycerine explosives " : W. Cullen and D. W. Greig- 
Description of method and results, with special reference to a new explosive, 
" Antifume." 

Cape Society of Civil Engineers. — Wednesday, October 13th : W. A. 
Legg, M.I.C.E., President, in the chair. — " Table Mountain rainfall, evapora- 
tion and run off " : W. A. Legg- Discussion continued. — " Design of 
Irrigation Channels to prevent silting and scouring " : F. E. Kanthack- 
The author explained the principle of the silt-transporting of water as deter- 
mined experimentally in India, and the system of designing irrigation channels 
based on the data thus established in order that silting and scouring may be 

Cape Chemical Society. — Friday, October 15th; R. Marloth, Ph.D., 
M.A., President, in the chair. — " The Chemistry of T7//5 capensis and of the 
-wine made from its fruit " : Prof. P. D. Hahn-^" The diamond fields of 
German South-West Africa " : Dr. R. Marloth- After reviewing the 
three theories as to the origin of the diamonds found 'n\ the coast belt of 
German S.W. Africa, the author expressed the opinion that, although the 
agates and pebbles accompanying the diamonds may have come from the Vaal 
River, the diamonds themselves probably came from a nearer source, at present 
either submarine or hidden beneath the desert sands. 

Royal Society of South Africa. — Wednesday, October 20th : S. S. 
Hough, M.A.. F.R.S., President, in the chair. — " Exhibition of collection of 


toad locusts from German S.W. Africa " : Dr. K. Marloth- H^e locusts 
harmonised curiously in colour with the stones amongst which they were found. 
— " Nutmeg Poisoning " : Dr. A. M. Wilson- — " Observations on some 
specimens of South African Fossil Reptiles preserved in the British iNIuseum ": 
Prof. R. Broom- — " The Odyssey of our Bushman boy " : L. Currle- — 
" Notes on Zoological and Botanical collections from Tristan d'Acunha " : 
Dr. L. Peringuey and E. P. Phillips- The botanical specimens com- 
prised 45 phanerogams and 13 pteridophytes ; the zoological collection con- 
sisted of birds, insects, and lishes. Sixteen of the plants were not mentioned 
in the " Challenger " reports. — " Absorption of light by the atmosphere " : 
Dr. A. W. Roberts- The author concludes that 17 per cent, of all rays 
that strike the atmosphere perpendicularly are absorbed. — " The Age of 
Stone (Palaeolithic) in the Drakenstein \'alley, and the manner in which the 
implements were made " : Dr. L. Peringuey- A large collection of huge 
implements was exhibited. It was found possible to reconstruct the artificial 
working of those implements from the fractured, water- worn cjuartzite 
boulder to implements of a finish equal to the best Acheulean. 


BusHM.'\N Paintings. Copied by M. Helen Tongue. Preface by Henry 
Balfour. With ,4 coloured plates in facsimile. /^ 15s. /. C. Juta and 
Co. ' 

The Ore Deposits of South Africa. By J. P. Johnson. Part II. The 
Witwatersrand and Pilgrim's Rest Gold Fields and similar occurrences. 
With diagrams. 6s. /. C. Juta and Co. 

Fertilisers in Manures. By A. D. Hall. 5s. /. Miirray. 

Aids to the "Analysis of Foods and Drugs." By C. G. Moor and W. 
Partridge. 3rd ed. (Students' Aids Series). 3s. Balliere. 

Agriculture in the Tropics. By J. C. Willis. An elementary treatise. 
Illustrated. (Cambridge Biological Series.) 7s. 6d. Cambridge Univer- 
sity Press. 





G.C.M.G., C.B., 


I desire first of all to thank the members of the Association for 
the honour they did me last year in electing me their President 
for the current year, and I further wish to express the pleasure it 
gives me to extend to those members now present a hearty welcome 
to the city of Bloemfontein at this their Annual Meeting. 

The Agenda which has been prepared and circulated amongst 
members sets forth the daily programme of business for the meeting. 
I therefore think there is no necessity for me to deal with it further 
than to express to those gentlemen who have so kindly consented 
to address the Association during the present session my hearty 
thanks for their coming forward and doing so. 

I appreciate very highly the compliment the members of the 
Association have paid me by electing me their President. At the 
same time I cannot help feeling very diffident, owing to my lack 
of scientific knowledge, in attempting to fill that role. I believe 
it is customary for the President at the Annual Meeting of the 
members of the Association to add his quota to the papers which 


are read on various scientific subjects, and this he generally does 
on the first evening. I propose therefore to follow that precedent 
and to lay before you this evening some few points on a question 
which I consider one of paramount importance to South Africa 
and which it is unfortunately necessary to constantly remind the 
farming community of, in order to ensure a lasting agricultural 
prosperity. We have in South Africa considerable quantities of 
minerals which undoubtedly have a very important bearing upon 
its prosperity, yet agriculture must be considered as the main and 
permanent foundation upon which the future progress of the nation 
must rest. You will, I think, agree with me that the mass of the 
agricultural population of South Africa are greatly lacking in the 
enlightenment in regard to science in its application to the cultiva- 
tion of the soil which is so essential to the proper development of 
the land. It is in the hope that, like drops of water which — 
continually falling upon a stone— eventually make an impression, 
my words to-night upon the necessity for the application of 
chemistry in agriculture, being a repetition of what has been urged 
so often by others, may lead to some impression being made upon 
some minds which have not paid attention heretofore to what 
scientists have propounded on the subject. I do not propose to 
go very deeply into the question as I scarcely feel capable of doing 
so ; I ask you therefore who are present and who are i)robably in 
many cases far better able to speak on the subject than I, to excuse 
me if what I lay before you is more of an outline of what is the 
case and what should be done as it appears to one who, not being 
a scientist, takes the deepest interest in the country and recognises 
the value of science, rather than a concise and detailed exposition 
which one would expect to be delivered to a gathering such as 
the present, representing as it does science in all its branches. 

All of us are aware that many farmers have neither the time 
nor the opportunity for studying scientific books of reference and, 
though I am now addressing this scientific audience, I think you 
will allow that even had they both time and opportunity, they 
might find considerable difficulty in fully understanding many of 
the technical expressions made use. of in those books. Not being a 
scientist and only just having been reading some of those very 
scientific works to which I have alluded, I want to try and express 
myself on the subject before us to-night as if I was trying to explain 
to other unscientific i)ersons what I had gleaned from my study, 
and I hope that in this manner I may make it comprehensible to all. 

The principal foundation of success in agriculture in this country 
and other parts of the world is the knowledge by those who are 
cultivating the land of what they are doing and the conception on 
their part that the soil contains valuable constituents, and that 
in the growing of crops and in the grazing of land they are taking 
out of that soil certain of those constituents which if not restored 
artificially must render the land sterile and incapable, after a certain 
period of time, of producing what it had yielded hitherto. The 
failure might be complete or such crops as are reaped might not 
be of the standard required to make a farm pay. We have many 
instances where certain produce has been raised in the first year 


following the breaking up of virgin soil which after a few yeai's 
has failed to come up to the standard of production of those early 
years, and in some instances those crops have fallen into neglect 
or been totally abandoned. Farmers must realise that plant life 
requires just as much food as animal life. Plant life requires air, 
light, water, favourable temperature and certain other chemical 
elements. I say other, because in air itself there are provided 
already two important chemical elements, namely, carbonic acid 
and nitrogen, upon which the plant lives. Many farmers consider, 
however, that the first four of the necessaries I have just mentioned 
are the only essentials for the growing of crops and that as long as 
nature provides these elements there is no necessity to consider 
anything else. It is to the other side of the question to which I 
specially want to draw your attention this evening, and I wish to 
show if possible how absolutely necessary it is for farmers to realise 
that there are other things beside air, light, water and a favourable 
temperature which must be provided in order to make farming 
a success, and that with that object in view they must have a 
rudimentary knowledge at least of the various chemical substances 
which it is necessary to provide plant life with, and if the^e sub- 
stances are lacking in the soil itself, either in its virgin condition 
or if removed by years of cultivation, they must be put back by 
some artificial means, so as to bring up the soil to its former capacity 
of production and even to increase that production. 

All fertile soils contain inorganic and organic matter. The 
inorganic matter in soil is to be found in the grains of rock brought 
down after changes had taken place in the original and larger 
rocks by their weathering. Some of these grains are soluble in 
water, whilst others are not. 

Organic matter, on the other hand, is the residue of plants which 
have grown previously on the soil, which in some cases may still 
be in the earlier stages of decomposition and may still be recognis- 
able, whilst in other cases the remains of plant life may be so far 
deca^/ed as to have lost all form and to appear simply as a coating 
a'round the soil grains. 

Soils naturally vary considerably in their texture either because 
the original plant life has been luxuriant or the reverse, and there 
consequently is a large or small percentage of organic matter, or 
because the action of water at one time or another has washed 
away some of the more soluble parts both of the original rock or 
the remains of vegetation or has deposited these soluble parts in 
some new situation. 

\'irgin soil for farming must contain phosphorus, potash, calcium 
and magnesium, and for the growing of most crops nitrogen. I 
wish to lay special stress upon the latter fact because in the growing 
of what are called leguminous plants, such as beans, peas, clovers, 
etc., these particular plants absorb nitrogen in large quantities 
from the air and do not depend entirely upon the nitrogen in the 
soil. The foregoing chemicals, with the addition of carbonic acid, 
which all plants assimilate from the air. are absolutely necessary 
for plant life. The chemicals in the soil must, however, be dis- 
tributed throughout it in such a form and in such quantities that 

4 president's address, 

they may be made use of by growing plants. It will not do for 
one or other to be abundant in one locality and the reverse in 
another, nor should, for instance, nitrogen be in a form in the 
soil which plants cannot absorb. Crops, like human beings and 
animals, must have plenty of food and it must be of a kind that 
they can make use of. Now farmers must recognise that if they 
continue growing crops, including grass, and by their removal from 
the ground they do not allow nature to follow its ordinary course 
whereby those plants would wither, decompose and return to the 
soil, they are actually decreasing the food siipply in the soil for 
any future crops which may be put into it. They must recognise 
that this plant food supply has been accumulated in the soil by 
exceedingly slow degrees, by the slow weathering and washing 
or blowing down of virgin rock, the gradual decomposition of 
vegetable matter, and then the mixing of these substances by vari- 
ous means such as the action of water and the activity of different 
kinds of organisms always at work, such as worms and bacteria, 
and if these slowly accumulated resources of food supply are 
drawn upon continually and in a rapid manner by the growing 
of grain and root crops without giving nature sufficient time to 
replenish these substances the soil must very soon diminish the 
supply necessary for plant life, and unless farmers are prepared 
to come to the assistance of nature and by artificial means replace 
in the soil that which they had removed therefrom the inevitable 
result must be that the land will become unproductive. 

I will now refer briefly to the chemical substances which are 
considered necessary for plant life and whence they are derived : 
Carbonic acid, one of the compounds contained in air, and from 
which the plant draws its main sustenance in the shape of carbon ; 
Nitrogen, another element contained in air to the extent of nearly 
four-fifths of its volume and which is present in a solid form in 
fertilisers such as Nitrate ; Phosphoric acid, usually in combina- 
tion with lime as calcium jihosphate and occurring in commerce 
as bone ash. The super-phosphate of lime is a phosphate such as 
bones ground in a powder and dissolved in sulphuric acid. 
Magnesium, one of the primitive earths ; Potash, an alkali obtained 
from the ashes of plants and is naturally present in the soil as a 
result of the weathering of the older rocks ; Calcium, an elementar}^ 
body and the base of lime or chalk. 

Oxygen is also necessary as plants must breathe, and is obtained 
by every plant through every portion of it, and as the roots as well 
as its leaves and branches can absorb oxygen it is necessary that 
the soil in which a plant grows should be kept loose or porous. 
As both carbonic acid and oxygen are obtained by plant life from 
the air it is not necessary for me to deal with them further in a 
subject such as the present which is concerned with what plants 
take out of the soil. Nitrogen in the combined form is taken 
by plants from the soil by means of their roots, but in some cases 
and by a process not yet fully understood, leguminous plants 
have the power of assimilating nitrogen directly from the aif. 
Nitrogen in soil is generally in combination with some other sub- 
stance and being in this form not soluble it is not in a fit condition 


to be made use of by plants. To accomplish this latter pur])ose 
it requires a long, slow and regular process. As already mentioned, 
the mixing of inorganic and organic matter in the soil is generally 
carried out by worms and various minor organisms. It is the 
task of certain of these latter bacteria to extract nitrogen from 
the combined form to which I have already referred and turn 
this nitrogen into ammonia. Another set of bacteria then change 
this ammonia into certain acids which uniting with limestone 
and similar material is turned into nitrites. Another set of 
bacteria again convert these nitrites into nitrates which being 
soluble in water are fit for plants to imbibe. In order to do their 
work properly these bacteria require a reasonable amount of heat, 
of moisture and of air, and if these are supplied all goes smoothly. 
If. however, there hap]iens to be too much moisture whereby 
the air becomes excluded from the ground, another set of bacteria 
go to work and reverse all that has been done by the first-mentioned 
bacteria and eventually the work of the destructive bacteria sets 
free the nitrogen in a gaseoiis form and it is lost to the soil. Loss 
of nitrogen can also take place by having the conditions too 
favourable for the good bacteria, and if such is the case they produce 
the nitrates in such large quantities that they cannot be consumed 
sufficiently fast by the plants and the result is that these nitrates, 
being soluble in water, easily get washed away and are lost. It 
is therefore necessary to keep the soil only sufficiently loose and 
porous to allow the beneficial bacteria to work steaclilv at such 
a rate as not to either under or over produce. I have already 
mentioned that leguminous plants such as peas, beans, clovers, 
lucerne, earth nuts, etc., have a means by which they can take 
in their necessary supply of nitrogen from the air. This they 
do not, however, do direct from the air as is done by plant life in 
general in the case of carbonic acid. It is done in the following 
manner. There are again a certain kind of bacteria which attack 
the roots of these particular leguminous plants and these particular 
bacteria themselves absorb the nitrogen from the air and make 
it available to be consumed by the roots of the plants they are 
actually living on. These bacteria are present in most oi' our 
soils, and though experiments have been made here and elsewhere 
to increase their number by inoculation of the soil with nitro- 
bacterine, it is doubtful whether it has done much good. The 
roots therefore of leguminous plants when left in the ground after 
reaping have with them these little colonies of nitrogen bacteria 
and by this means a fresh supply of nitrogen is deposited in the 
soil. It is now a common practice to specially grow leguminous 
crops and then plough them in when green and in this way still 
further increase the store of nitrogen in the soil. Though I have 
said that leguminous plants draw their nitrogen in the manner I 
have described above, yet if there should happen to be a good 
proportion and in a form suitable to the plants there is no doubt 
that these plants would also draw largely from the source of supply 
in the soil as do other plants. Leguminous crops should preferably 
be grown in soils which are not suitable for non-leguminous crops, 
and where these crops are grown and ploughed in, a land which 


is poor in vegetable or organic matter can be greatly nnprovea 
in quality. It can be easily understood that leguminous crops 
do not need artificial fertilisers which contain nitrogen. By 
manuring the soil with farmyard refuse a large number of special 
bacteria, whose speciality it is to convert nitrogen into ammonia, 
are replaced in the soil, and the greatest benefit is thereby derived. 
Phosphoric acid is of the very greatest importance to all kinds of 
crops. Unfortunately in this country it is very often in such 
small quantities that it is too little for what is required. The 
European standard is .01 per cent, of phosphoric acid or one in 
one hundred, but in this country it is in many cases only one-fifth 
of that amount — in fact, not nearly enough for good farming. 
Phosphoric acid is, as I have already said, usually present in the 
soil in the form of a phosphate, i.e., in combination with lime 
or some other like substance, but to be absorbed by plant life 
it has to be set free from this combination. This, it is generally 
understood, is accomplished by means of the acidity of the soil. 
This acidity acting upon the mineral phosphates liberates the 
phosphoric acid and enables it to be consumed. I have here 
referred to acidity of the soil. This acidity, I should explain, 
arises from the decomposition of vegetable matter where there 
is too small an amount of lime and magnesium present to neutralise 
it. This acidity, if too great, injuriously affects plant life, but the 
exact manner of its doing so is not quite understood. It will 
be observed that the presence of lime is necessary in the soil to 
counteract the acidity and, in combination with phosphoric acid, 
to form phosphates, yet if there is too much lime in the soil it 
will check the solution of the mineral pho?iphates and thereby 
prevent the release of the phosphoric acid in the manner required 
by the plants. It can be understood, therefore, how necessary 
it is in the growing of crops to ascertain whether you have too 
much acidity in the soil or not. If you have too much acidity 
it can be corrected by the judicious addition of lime, care being 
taken, of course, that you do not add too much. If there is too 
little acidity in the soil, it can be increased by the judicious use 
of farmyard or green manures which will by their decompositioji 
add to the acidity and thus bring about the liberation of the 
phosphoric acid. It has even been proposed to spray alkaline 
soils with very dilute nitric acid. 

Potash is another very important element for plant life. It 
prolongs the growing period of a plant and its production of 
starchy and sugary products. Fortunately it is generally present 
in sufficient quantities in our soils, except perhaps in those of an 
exceedingly light, sandy nature. Potash should be present in the 
soil in the ratio of about one in one thousand, and the vast majority 
of our soils have this amount. 

Calcium or lime is most necessary in the soil, not only on account 
of the part which it plays in combination with nitrogen and phos- 
phoric acid, as already described, but also because it is itself a 
plant food. 

Magnesium forms part of the food of plants and, though present 
in'small amounts, there is generally sufficient for any ordinary crop. 


Silica and iron are also essential, but these are universally present. 

Now, having told the farmer what chemicals are necessary for 
him to have in his soil if he wants his crops to flourish and his 
stock to thrive, I can easily imagine his saying : " How am I to 
find out whether these chemicals are there and whether in a suitable 
form ? " My answer to him is that he can only do so accurately 
by having his soil analysed : yet he can also make a very shrewd 
guess that if he or others have year after year been cultivating 
the ground without ever having put anything back into it he has 
been lessening the quantity of chemicals nature at first provided, 
and therefore he would be justified in assuming that the soil was 
short of most of these necessary ingredients, and he would be 
doing well were he to attempt to artificially restore what had 
been in the past removed. 

It may interest some sceptical farmers to know the result of 
certain experiments carried out in the Transvaal regarding the 
accuracy of the contention that the chemicals I have mentioned 
are necessary for plants to live upon. The result of these experi- 
ments was published in the Agricultural Department Journal of 
October last. Grains of barley were grown in glass vessels con- 
taining water, and to this water were added small, carefully- 
weighed quantities of those chemicals I have mentioned as being 
necessary for plant life. In some cases the whole of the chemicals 
were added whilst in separate other cases one or other of these 
chemicals was left out. During the growth of the plants the glass 
vessels in which the barley was growing were kept in the dark, 
and only the leaves and stems were exposed to the light, in imitation 
of nature's plan. The barley in the pots where all the chemicals 
had been added, grew, reached maturity, and produced grains. 
In those where the nitrogen was withheld the barley grew vigorously 
at first, but when the nitrogen contained in the seed itself was 
exhausted the plant died of nitrogen starvation. Where no 
phosphoric acid was added there was practically no root develop- 
ment at all and the plant soon died off. From this experiment it 
would appear that to get a good lot of roots there must be an 
ample supply of phosphoric acid. Where no potash was added 
the barley grew for a considerable time but never made any appear- 
ance of producing grain. Where no lime was supplied the barley 
grew at first very well, but gradually got weaker and died of lime 

The question now to be considered is how deficiences in plant 
food are to be supplied to the soil. In good soils these chemicals 
actually exist but not in the required form for absorption by plants. 
The best system is to have good cultivation and have the soil 
moved about and kept open. This allows oxygen to get at the 
roots of the plants, and it facilitates the work of the beneficial 
bacteria which have the task of converting mineral nitrogen into 
nitrates to be consumed by plants. Where the soil is poor either 
in consequence of its original poverty or its having become so, 
through bad cultivation, plant foods can only be replaced by a 
manure. To ascertain accurately the form of manure which is 
necessary, an exact analysis of the soil must be made to find out 


what chemical is short or o\x'rabundant. It would be but waste 
of time and money to put a manure into the soil which was com- 
posed jMimarily of one ingredient of which already there was 
sufficient in the soil, and not to put in the very ingreilient which 
was missing or in smaller quantities, and which was the one really 
required. No one can, however, go very far wrong in putting in 
kraal and stable manure. It contains a little of everything which 
was originally present in the soil. These manures also improve 
the jiower of the soil lor retaining moisture and also render many 
soils more porous, which, as I have already shown, is so very 
necessarv in many cases. It also gradually gives up its essential 
elements and thereby its influence extends over some years so that 
these are available to the plants as they are needed. The rate at 
which farmyard manure gives up its elements depends upon the 
access of air to the manure ; this will therefore depend upon the 
character of the soil and the manner in which it is applied, whether 
it is simi>ly laid on the top of the ground or whether it is ploughed 
under. In light, porous soils it is advisable to plough it under 
as the oxygen in the air can get at the manure and it becomes 
almost at once a plant food supplier, whilst in heavy clay soil, 
if the manure is ploughed in, the air cannot get at it so readily 
and the results are therefore slower. It is therefore advisable in 
clay soils to spread the manure on the surface of the ground. The 
chief defect of this manure is that it is comparatively poor in 
phosphoric acid, the very ingredient which is most required in 
South African soils. It is exceedingly to be regretted that in 
South Africa farmyard manure is almost entirely absent on most 
farms, simply because the majority of farmers do not follow pro- 
gressive ways, whilst on the few farms where it is found it is only in 
very limited quantities. I cannot too strongly urge upon 
agricultural farmers the necessity of keeping some class of live 
stock and making arrangements for the regular supply of this 

In consequence of the scarcity of farmyard manure and the fact 
that this kind of fertiliser does lack phosphoric acid, of which there 
is already too short a supply in our soils, it is necessary that arti- 
ficial manures should be used. 

There are many artificial fertilisers on the market so designed as 
to supply one or more of those chemicals which I have so often 
named — nitrogen, phosphoric acid, potash and lime. As a rule 
the best are phosphoric acid and potash fertilisers which, applied 
broadcast in the autumn and worked into the soil, give very good 
results. Should these fertilisers be in the shape of bone dust or 
raw mineral phosphates, it must be remembered that in this form 
certain further chemical changes have to take place before they 
become available as a plant food, and therefore they should be 
given time. Those which supply nitrogen, and nitrate of soda 
and sulphate of ammonia, or phosphoric acid as superphosphate, 
all being easily soluble, should be applied to the soil in the spring 
and worked into the ground when preparing it for seeding. The 
best form in which to apply lime is — white slaked applied at the 
rate of at least 300 lbs. to the acre. Wood ashes provide potash 


and a small portion of i)hosphoric acid and are a vaAiabjt tertilisei 
but this manure can of course only be got in small quantities. In 
South Africa most manure merchants make up mixtures suitable 
for different crops, such as mealie and tobacco fertilisers, and as 
they are already mixed the farmer is saved the trouble of doing so. 

I have dealt with the several chemicals which it is necessary to 
have in the soil in order to fully sustain plant life. I should now 
like to say a word regarding chemicals which are in the soil and 
which have a deleterious effect on plants and which, therefore, have 
to be got rid of if jwssible. One which is ver}^ common in South 
Africa and which is doing an immensity of harm is what is called 
" black brak," or scientifically called a deposit of sodium carbonate. 

In a large portion of South Africa the undergroiuid waters, which 
are raised to the surface through the agency of fountains, sj^-ings 
or by pumps, are for the most part impregnated with mineral 
compounds, es])ecially sodium salts, derived from the soils and 
rocks in which the waters are stored ; these sodium salts are also 
present in conserved water, but not quite to the same extent ; 
when such water is used for irrigation eventually the liquid jiortion 
is either consumed by the plants, soaks into the ground or 
evaporates, but the sodium salts remain on the surface of the soil 
and by degrees accumulate to such an extent that the soil becomes 
sterile, and in many instances the only bit of ground on the farm 
upon which water can be carried becomes useless. One per cent, 
of sodium carbonate in the soil renders it absolutely sterile. The 
principal preventative or remedy for this state of affairs is to 
properly irrigate and drain the land. It may surprise some of my 
listeners to know that in Egyjjt, where irrigation is carried to a 
fine art, there has been nearly as much expenditure upon the 
drainage of the ground as there has been in building canals and 
furrows to convey the w^ater to the ground, and when fresh irriga- 
tion works are under consideration both sides of the question 
receive equal attention. By a proper system of irrigation and 
drainage the sodium salts can usually be taken away. This can be 
accelerated by occasionally gi\'ing the ground a reall}/ good soaking. 
If sodium • carbonates are present to any great extent the 
method of applying gypsum should also be combined with 
flooding or soaking with water. This method of counteracting 
black brak is, I think. ])articularly suited to the case of small 
farmers in this country, who find that their little patch of irrigated 
land is gradually becoming unjiroductive and perhaps white with 
brak salts. It is remedied by the application of j^owdered gypsum to 
the infected spot. Gypsum is a soft chalky white mineral and is 
abundant in many of the western and southern parts of this Colony 
— in fact, I have reason to believe that the Bloemfontein-Kimberley 
Railway cuts through one or two large beds of it, so that if it was 
worked it ought to be obtained very cheaply. G.ypsum. together 
with sodium carbonate, forms calcium carbonate, which is highly 
beneficial to plant life. 

The salts to which I have referred move up and down, descending 
as the moisture gets into the ground, ascending as the ground dries 
up, and at thej^end of a dry season practically the entire mass of the 

10 president's address. 

salts may be within six or eight inches of the surface. It is there- 
fore possible in small plots of land to actualh^ remove the whole 
of these bad salts by removing the surface soil. This could be done 
by the use of such an implement as a dam scraper. The question 
may be asked : " Would it be worth while doing this ? " I can 
only say that many of these alkali spots contain an unusually high 
percentage of plant food, and if the bad salts are removed the 
ground should be profusely productive. The presence of large 
quantities of these salts causes the soil to lose its flaky condition 
with the result that it forms in the depths of the soil a tough, hard 
pan, impervious to water and almost impossible to work with pick 
or plough and renders drainage impossible. I believe that this 
formation is often styled by farmers in this country " pot-clay," 
but I fancy that this word " pot-clay " covers several different 
kinds of hard, impervious sub-soils, the description of which I 
consider outside the province of this paper. 

I have now finished what I set out to do, viz., to point out " the 
necessity of applying chemistry to agriculture," but before sitting 
down I wish to express a hope that the outcome of this annual 
meeting of the members of this Association may be as beneficial 
to the steady advancement of Science in South Africa as have been 
similar gatherings in other years. I also hope that there will be 
added many names to the list of members of the Society, especially 
do I desire that it should be so in the case of many young persons 
who may hereafter become influential persons in the country and 
who may later on be able to do a great deal to further the study of 
scientific subiects, and in this way add to the knowledge whichjis 
so essential if the country and its people are to go ahead on the 
lines of civilised life and to prosper. 


President of the Section : — Professor W. A. D. Rudge, M.A. 


The President delivered the following address : — 

From the very earliest times speculation has been rife as to the 
natme of matter. Thales, B.C. 600, held that everything was 
composed of water — Heraclitus thought that air and tire were the 
elements from which everything could be elaborated, while 
Empedocles and Aristotle considered that all might be regarded 
as being compounded of earth, water, fire and air ; but these four 
they seemed to have looked upon as modifications of one primary 
kind of matter. That it was possible for one kind of matter to 
pass into another kind of matter seems to have been accepted as 
a truism. Aristotle himself considered that the four elements were 
not sufficient, and he therefore assumed the existence of a fifth, 
which he called " ousia." and this — analagous to our ether — 
permeated everything. 

It was Lucretius who first gave us the definite idea of matter 
being built up of the small particles which we now call " atoms." 
He says, in " De Rerum Natura " : 

" For inlinite atoms in a boundless void 
By endless motion build the frame of things." 

The venerable Bede refers to small divisions of time under the 
name of " atomi," so that the idea of ultimate particles was 
probably well understood at a very early date. 

During the Middle Ages the work of the alchemists was largely 
devoted to endeavours to transmute one kind of matter — i.e., 
atoms — into another, for at this time the modern chemical theory 
of the immutability of the atom had not been conceived. Very 
little was done by the alchemists to advance our real knowledge 
of matter, and its inner structure troubled them not at all. 

Robert Boyle advanced a theory that all substances were com- 
posed of minute particles and that combination took place between 
these particles, rather than between the masses as a whole, taking 
part in a chemical change. But it was Dalton who first definitely 
put the question of the atomic structure of matter upon a firm 
foundation, showing that there were many difterent kinds of atoms, 
and that to each atom might be assigned a definite, relative weight. 
These relative weights have been regarded as one of the most 
important of the chemical properties associated with the atom, 
for Dalton showed that chemical union occurred between definite 
proportions by weight. Consequently the efforts of chemists have 
been from that time devoted to the determination of the value 


of the relative weight to be assigned to each atom. It was early 
observed that the values of the atomic weights appeared to be 
whole numbers, and, taking hydrogen as unity, the other atomic 
w^eights seemed to be whole multiples of that of hydrogen. This 
circumstance led to the enunciation of the doctrine that all the 
elementary atoms were formed from one primary substance, and as 
hydrogen was the lightest material known, it seemed not un- 
reasonable to assume that the elements might be regarded as 
modifications of hydrogen. This was the basis of the famous 
hypothesis of Prout. It had at first the effect of weakening the 
atomic theory, but careful determinations showed that the atomic 
weights were not whole numbers, and the hypothesis was eventually 
discarded. Had Prout had at his disposal the facts we now have, 
it would have been much more difficult to overthrow his 
hypothesis. From Prout' s time until nearly the end of the last 
century the atom reigned supreme. Now and again a daring 
innovate questioned the inviolability of the atom, but he did not 
meet with much support and his " conclusive " experiments were 
explained away. I have not considered any hypothesis which 
goes further than the atom — the ultima ratio of all things, a sacred 
unit to be revered and worshipped. 

The questions must always have recurred to thoughtful men : 
" Why should the atoms be different ? " — " Why may they not 
have been formed from one primordial substance ? " To these 
questions I propose to furnish answers in the course of my address. 

Now, let us examine some of the theories which have been 
advanced to account for the existence of tangible matter. About 
the middle of the last centurj/ the remarkable character of vortex 
motion seems to have impressed itself upon the attention of the 
mathematical physicists. Von Helmholtz in 1858 enunciated his 
theory of vortex motion, in which he showed that we might con- 
ceive that the rotating parts of a continuous incompressible fluid 
preserve their identity when once they have been set in motion. 
So that, if a portion of the ether acquires this motion by any means, 
that ])ortion is for ever marked off from surrounding portions. 

Vortex rings can be formed in the air by any smoker, and can 
probably be set up in the ether by electrical discharges. Lord 
Kelvin developed the theory and postulated that matter as we 
know it may be made up of these rotating vortex rings, interlocked 
in such a fashion that they cannot escape from each other's clutches. 
Clerk Maxwell, J. J. Thomson and many others also worked at 
this theory, and, as far as mathematical expression goes, the theory 
is fairly complete. Perhaps some day the necessary experimental 
evidence may be forthcoming, which will establish the truth — or, 
on the other hand, show the fallacy — of the reasoning. 

These vortex atoms must be perfectly elastic. The vortex theory 
seeks to explain, not merely the constitution of matter, but also 
the nature of heat, light and electricity. Another theory which 
met with some support is that of Boscovich, which postulates that 
the ultimate atom is merely a centre of force, possessing a definite 
mass, and, consequently, inertia. Time does not permit the 
enumeration of other theories, very many of which may be studied, 


however, in these much- despised vohimes, the " Encyclojitjedia 
Britannica." One may perhaps quote Clerk Maxwell on this 
subject. He says : — 

" When the vortex atom is once set in motion, all its jiroperties are fixed 
by the laws of motion of the primitive Huid. The disciple of Lucretius may 
cut antl carve his hard, solid atoms in the hope of getting them to combine 
into worlds ; the followers of Boscovich may imagine new laws of force 
to meet the requirements of each new ]ihenomenon : but he who dares to 
plant his feet in the path opened by Helndioltz and Thomson, has no such 
resources. His primitive fluid has no other properties than motion, invariable 
density and perfect mobility, and the method by which the motion of this 
fluid is to be traced is by mathematical analysis. The difficulties of this 
method are enormous, but the glory of surnn)unting them would be unique." 

In 1816 Faraday pointed out the possibility of a fourth state 
of matter as a consequence of a transformation of gaseous matter 
into something that would transcend it as much as a gas transcends 
a liquid, and he thought it quite likely that some such transforma- 
tion would occur, by which we might get a better knowledge of 
the nature of the chemical elements. He stated that the decom- 
position and recomposition of metal were problems which would 
one day be solved by chemistry ; in other words, that transmutation 
was not impossible of realisation. 

Many years ago Crookes showed that during the electrical dis- 
charge in a vacuum tube, small j^articles were shot off from the 
cathode with very great velocity. These particles were apparently 
composed of matter in a different state from that of a solid or 
liquid or a gas — Crookes considered it at that time to be ultra- 
gaseous, or composed of matter in a " fourth " state. Can we 
say that he was wrong ? It will be shown that, if the corpuscle 
is not matter exactly, it may be just the connecting link between 
ether and matter. For a long time Crookes' views as to the material 
nature of these particles were not accepted by everyone, especially 
by the Continental physicists ; but by this time so much experi- 
mental evidence has been amassed that no one doubts the truth 
of the theory, and we accept the "existence of these particles, now 
known as corpuscles. If our theories are correct, a knowledge of 
these corpuscles will enable us to arrive at a solution of that problem 
which has exercised the minds of thinkers for ages, viz., the consti- 
tution of matter itself. Now let us consider these corpuscles. 
How are they produced and why does a study of them enable us 
to gain some knowledge of the inner nature of matter. If a power- 
ful electrical discharge is allowed to occur between two conductors 
we get a bright flash of light which passes verj- quickly, the length 
of the path of the discharge being usually short if it passes through 
air or a gas at atmospheric pressure. If, however, the discharge 
passes through a tube in which the pressure of the air has been 
reduced, the length of the path becomes greater and at the same 
time altering in character. Instead of getting a bright, short flash, 
we have a glow. The discharge and the luminosity are limited to 
the central parts of the tube in which the discharge is taking place, 
and the glass itself does not become luminous. When the pressure 
is reduced to a very small value the nature of the discharge is 
different again. Very little luminosity is now seen in the path of 
the discharge, but the glass tube itself is now highly luminous, 


this luminosity being caused by the bombardment ot the glass by 
the ultra-gaseous particles of Crookes, or, as we now call them, 
the corpuscles. Now it does not matter what is the nature of the 
gas originally present in the tube, nor does the nature of the 
electrode interfere ; the character of the corpuscle seems to remain 
the same in all cases. Are these corpuscles material bodies, or 
are they merely " waves " set up in the ether, as was at one time 
thought ? The answer must be, I think, that they are material 
bodies. Let us now study their specific properties. In the first 
place they are travelling with tremendous velocity, and they move 
in straight lines as we should expect material bodies to do. In 
the second place, their direction of motion can be changed by the 
action of a force, and in the third, they carry an electric charge, 
which indicates that they must be composed of matter or some- 
thing akin to matter. Against this view might be adduced the 
difficulty of conceiving that such an enormous number of particles 
could be shot off from any piece of matter, without its being 
changed in weight, or altered in character, and also the fact that 
the particles can pass through a piece of solid material. This 
argument would have had considerable force before the discovery 
of radium, but now we know that actual particles of matter may 
be shot off continuously from radium for many years without 
the original matter suffering a weighable loss of material. I have 
in my possession several spinthariscopes, which have been under 
observation for five years without their activity being appreciably 
lessened — and to give a quantitative example, I hold in my hand 
a piece of glass, on which was placed five years ago 11.700017 
part of a grain of radium, and io-day sufficient radium remains to 
indicate its presence. It will still excite luminosity in a dark room 
— that is, it is still shooting off particles so numerous that they 
cannot be counted. 

All the corpuscles shot off from the cathode are charged with 
negative electricity, and this fact it is which enables us to find c^t 
what the mass of the corpuscle is. So far we have not been able 
to determine their mass directly, but as they are charged with 
electricity we can in several ways obtain a value for the ratio of 

the charge to the mass of the corpuscle, that is, the famous 


can be detex"mined in many ways, and the surprising result is seen 

that this ratio is practically the same, whether the corpuscles are 

obtained from the discharge of electricity in a vacuum tube or from 

those emitted by a hot wire, or by those thrown off from hot lime, 

or again by those produced by radio-active substances, such as 

uranium, radium, etc. In fact, these corpuscles are so universal 

and so associated with the most diverse kinds of matter — I think 

I may say with all kinds of matter — that one is led to believe that 

they are synonomous with matter itself. This piece of nickel is 

giving off at the present time none or, at most, very few corpuscles, 

but heat it to about 380° and they are given off rapidly. If 

corpuscles of the same character are thrown off from the most 

diverse kinds of matter, should it not be possible to conceive of the 

corj)uscles uniting to produce any kind of matter. To quote Sir 


J. J. Thomson, we may " regard the corpuscles as one of the 
bricks from which the atoms (of matter) are built up." 

For ages the alchemists endeavoured to discover some method 
whereby one kind of matter could be changed into another, the 
general idea being to obtain a valuable material from one almost 
worthless, and the search after the Philosophers' stone which was 
to transmute iron or copper into gold was carried on right into the 
beginning of the nineteenth century. One of the chief results of 
Dalton's labours was to overthrow the doctrine of transmutation, 
and from the beginning to the end of the nineteenth century, very 
few could have been found who would dare to question the im- 
possibility of transmutation ever being effected. And yet the 
theory is not so unreasonable as may at first sight appear, for we 
know that it is possible to change yellow into red phosphorus,, 
diamond into grai^hite — fortunately for South Africa the converse 
does not hold, — while iron, when heated to 730° loses one of its most 
characteristic properties, viz., magnetic susceptibility. Silver ako 
can be obtained in the form of a red powder, soluble in water, and 
many other instances could be quoted to show that apparently 
one kind of matter could be changed into another kind, which 
was certainly physically different and to some extent chemically 
different. But no one has yet succeeded in changing phosphorus 
into sulphur or silver into copper, and the chemical element was 
considered to be a definite entity which was practically immutable. 

To some investigators, however, the thought must have often 
occurred that some, at all events, of our so-called elementary 
matter might conceivably be simple. The spectroscope shows that 
very few elements give simple spectra — in fact, most of them are 
exceedingly complex. If the spectral lines are due to periodic 
vibrations of the electrons or corpuscles — then in the case, say, of 
iron — very many periodic vibrations are possible, whereas, in an 
ideal element we should expect that it would have only one vibratory 
period, in which case its spectrum would show one line only. This 
condition is not attained by any one element. Of course, if each 
element should give one line only, the number of elements would 
have to be indefinitely increased. This, I think, would not cause 
any great confusion, as we should find that in most cases the groups 
of elements, and not the actual elements themselves, would be 
capable of enjoying a separate existence. 

This idea is, of course, contrary to that formerly held — still, 
indeed, held — that all the elements were formed from hydrogen 
or some primordial body. 

If Front's hypothesis can be considered valid. I think it is not 
unphilosophical to consider the possibility of transmutation ; the 
improbability is certainly very great, but not unthinkable. At 
the end of last century the position was this : that the matter 
composing the universe, as far as revealed by chemistry and the 
spectroscope, was made up of about seventy different elements, 
these elements being considered quite distinct from each other. 
Now, we cannot regard the number of elements as absolutely fixed, 
for several of them are present in such small quantity and are so 
intimately combined with other elements, that great difficulty is 


experienced in separating them — as time goes on the number of 
elements will probably increase. Undoubtedly the most important 
of the many discoveries during the past twelve years is the isolation 
of radium. I do not now, however, propose to discuss the subject 
save in so far as it bears upon the question of the immutability 
of the chemical elements, for in radium the impossible has been 
found possible — that is, one kind of matter has been changed 
into another kind. It must be considered as being definitely 
established that radium itself is formed, at least in part, from 
uranium, not in one stage, but by way of several intermediate 
products. Now, radium and uranium have several chemical 
properties in common. Their atomic weights are not far from 
each other, and we have every reason to believe that they have 
other properties closely related. Radium, however, is not a per- 
manent body : it changes — very slowly, it is true — but it does 
change into helium, and this change is one of a character altogether 
different from that of the change from uranium to radium. 
Uranivmi is a metal of high atomic weight, which forms well- 
derined basic and acidic oxides, and shows marked affinity for 
other elements. Helium, on the other hand, is a gas of low atomic 
weight (it is the lightest body next to hydrogen). It seems to 
be absohitely destitute of chemical affinity, so that it will not 
combine with any other element. 

Now the change — uranium to radium to helium — is brought 
about spontaneously ; as far as I know we cannot accelerate or 
retard the process, but this much is certain, that here we have a 
case about which, at present, there cannot be any doubt but that 
one kind of matter has been transformed into another — i.e., the 
transmutation of elements has been proved. I must not lay 
myself open to misapprehension — in making this statement it must 
be clearly understood that this change has not been brought about 
by human agency : we can observe the change — we cannot initiate 
it. It has been claimed for radium that it can induce other 
elements to change. Copper, for instance, has been stated to have 
been changed under the influence of radium emanation into 
lithium — water vapour, again, into neon, l^ut these observations 
lack confirmation. 

The change uranium-radium-hclium is a breaking-down 
process — perhaps this is the only way in which transmutation 
may be possible. An element of high atomic weight may change 
into one of low atomic weight ; but the reverse change may not 
be possible, so that the alchemists' dream of changing copper into 
gold may still be as far from realisation as ever. 

Do we know anything at all as to why the elements differ one 
from another ? The answer is : " Very little." But that little 
is very interesting, and from it great things may follow. 

What are the views held at present by physicists on the con- 
stitution of matter ? I say " physicists " because the chemist 
does not like the idea of his sacred atom being dethroned. The 
physicist is a believer in the corpuscular theory of matter, as 
formulated by J. J. Thomson, which is based on the behaviour of 
the minute electrified j)articles called electrons or corpuscles. Let 


US now consider briefly the evidence on which this theory rests. 
The transport of electrified particles may be brought about by 
two processes : (i) by the passage of a current through a solution ; 
(2) by the discharge of electricity through a vacuum tube. 

In (i) it is not dilftcult to obtain a ratio between the amount of 
charge carried by each ion and the mass of the ion itself. In fact, 
the ratio of e, the charge, to m, the mass, is lo^ for the hydrogen 
ion. This may be determined experimentally. 

In the case of the discharge in the vacuum tube, the ratio of 

- for the negatively-electrified corpuscle is about i"? x lo" 

m -^ ' 

that is, the mass must be about ^ -',,,, of the mass of the atom 
produced during electrolysis, so that the mass of the corpuscle is 
about j-y„„ of that of the hydrogen atom. Now, it may be 
shown that the charge upon the atom is the same during electro- 
lysis as that upon the corpuscle in the vacuum tube, but, as the 
ratio in the latter case is so much larger, it follows that the mass 
of the corpuscle is ,-'„,, that of the atom. By several distinctly 

different methods it is proved that the ratio of is of the value 


stated. From the rate at which a cloud falls after being produced 

by the expansion of moist air (according to the celebrated method 

of C. T. R. Wilson) we can find the size of the drops of water forming 

the cloud, and if we can measure the total charge carried by a 

definite number of drops, we can determine the charge of each drop. 

The value of e is thus found to be 3*1 x io~^" electrostatic 

units, or io~-'^ electromagnetic units — that is, it is the same as 

that carried by a hydrogen atom during electrolysis. Since 

^ = I-/ X 10" and t' = 10^-" it follows that in, the mass of the 

corpuscle, is about 6 x 10 -^. It is only the trained scientific 
mind which can appreciate the magnitude of these numbers. 

A peculiarity of the corpuscle lies in the fact that the charge 
associated with it is always negative, while that associated with 
an atom may be positive or negative. (It has been shown by 
J. J. Thomson that the mass of the corpuscle may be regarded as 
being due to the charge of negative electricity residing upon it.) 

The value of for the positive atom is, however, 10^ instead of 

17 X 10^ for the corpuscle. Ev^ery atom of matter has associated 

with it at least one corpuscle, though the number is not limited 

to one. If a particle is set in motion by any means, the energy 

necessary to set it moving with the velocity v is h m v'^ ; but if the 

particle is electrified, the energy required will be greater, because 

a magnetic field will be generated by the moving charge, and by 

a well-known principle the production of the field will tend to 

stop the motion of the body giving rise to it. If the particle is 

a sphere of radius r, mass m, and the charge upon it e, then if it 

is moved with a velocity v, the energy required will be made up 

of two portions, (i) the energy necessary to give it a velocity 


V = h m V- and (2) that due to the energy expended in producing 

e- V- 

the magnetic field = h 

" r 

.-. I m V- + \ - = I \m + % — ] v 

■^ y - \ r ' 

— that is. the mass is apparently increased by an amount pro- 

portional to §- or an electrified particle has practically a greater 

mass than an unelectrified one. Now, if the particle is very small 
and the velocity great the increase in mass will be large and, for 
a given charge, the increase will be greater for a small body than 
for a large one, so that the extra mass due to the motion of the 
corpuscle becomes greater and greater in proportion to the original 
mass until at last the greater part of the energy will be used in the 
work done on the charge. Finally, the whole mass of the corpuscle 
behaves as though it were of electrical origin. If this is true for all 
corpuscles and if all matter is made up of corpuscles then the 
logical conclusion is that the mass of all matter takes its origin in 
charges of electricit3^ 

The size of a corpuscle is much smaller than that of an atom. 
The linear dimension is about 10^^^ cm., while that of the atom 
is of the order lo"*^ — that is, the atom is 100,000 times the size of 
the corpuscle. The volume of the corpuscle is thus very small 
compared with the volume of the atom. To give some sort of 
parallel so as to compare the ratio of the size of the corpuscle to 
that of the atom, it may be stated that the size of the earth is to 
the size of its orbit of the order of i to 24,000, so that the corpuscle 
in comparison with the atom is only one quarter as great as is the 
earth to its orbit. If there is a number of corpuscles in an atom, 
the distance between each must be great as compared with their 
radii. Following the conventional idea that matter is composed 
of atoms, we say that atoms are all of one size but possess different 
weights, and to each atom a definite number known as the atomic 
weight is assigned. This number is, of course, purely a relative 
one, and when we say that " the atomic weight of an element is 
20 " we simply mean that taking the hydrogen atom as unity, 
this particular atom weighs twenty times as much. The actual 
mass of the atom is exceedingly small, being somewhat of the 
order of 10 -^ grms. No chemical explanation as to the cause 
of the different values of the atomic weight has, so far as I know, 
ever been given — the periodic law classifies but does not explain. 
We have been in the habit of considering them as " constants of 
Nature." They certainly are constant in value, for if this were 
not the case quantitative chemical analysis would be impossible. 
An explanation has been put forward by Professor J. J. Thomson, 
based upon the corpuscular theory of matter. He has suggested 
that the number of corpuscles associated with each atom of matter 
is the same as the number expressing the atomic weight. Should 
this bear the test of investigation, it will be one of the most remark- 
able discoveries of recent years, and, whilst further proving the 
corpuscular theory of matter, will also give a real meaning for the 
values attached to the atomic weights. 


The theory has been developed from several points of view : 
firstly, from secondary Rontgen radiation ; secondly, by deter- 
mining the opacity of substances to cathode rays ; thirdly, from 
general optical properties. 

By considering the results obtained by studying secondary 
Rontgen radiation, the following conclusions were arrived at. 
Rontgen rays, passing through a gas, give rise to secondary rays 
owing to the pulses set up by the rays acting upon the charges 
possessed by the corpuscles causing the latter to move with great 
velocity, and these in turn will give off a similar kind of radiation 
to the original Rontgen radiation. It can be shown that the 

r ii T ■ • 1 8 T Xt'* . , 

energy of the new radiation is equal to „ times the energy 

passing through unit volume in unit time. The nature of the 
secondary radiation will, of course, vary with the nature of the 
material, but it has been shown that for elements of low atomic 
weight the quality — i.e., penetrating power of the secondary 
radiation — is the same as that of the primary. It has also been 
shown that the proportion between the energy of the secondary 
radiation and the primary radiation is independent of the nature 
of the primary radiation, and for different substances the ratio 
between the primary and secondary is directly proportional to the 

8 77- Xe^ 
density of the substance. As the ratio is equal to - ' it 

3 m 
follows that the number of corpuscles in a unit volume is pro- 
portional to the density of the substance, and density is equal to 
the product of the number of atoms by the atomic weight. From 
this it follov/s that the number of corpuscles is proportional to the 
atomic weight. B3/ studying the refractive index of a gas, for light 
waves of a frequency p, it has been shown that the probable number 
of corpuscles in the case of the hydrogen atom is about i, and 
similar reasoning applied to other elements indicate that the 
number of corpuscles is the same as the atomic weight. 

It has been pointed out that the mass of a corpuscle is about 
"iTTro of that of an atom of hydrogen, and therefore if there is one 
corpuscle composed of negative electricity to each atom of hydrogen, 
it follows that the greater part of the atom must be composed of 
something else. Now the atom is a neutral body, electrically 
speaking, so that the remainder }S;|;J of the whole atom must be 
composed of -h electricity or a charge of -f- equal to that of the — 
on the corpuscle must reside upon the atom. This, of course, is 
on the assumption that there is only one corpuscle to each atom 
— this has been shown to be probably not the case. Kaufmann 

measured — for corpuscles from radium at different speeds and 

showed that it apparently increased with the speed, and we gather 

from his experiments that at the velocity attained the electrical 

mass was one-fifth that of the mechanical mass. Its energy must 

also increase, therefore, with the speed. Now, if we can conceive 

of the speed becoming very great and if the apparent or electrical 

mass increases in proportion, a point will at last be reached when 


this acquired mass becomes so great in comparison with the original 
mass that we may consider the latter as a negligible quantity 
regarding the whole mass as being due to a charge of electricity 
in rapid motion. If this be true then we have achieved a solution 
of the problem of the genesis of matter. 

When an electron is taken away from an atom the latter becomes 
a positive ion, a.nd the addition of one or more corpuscles to a 
neutral atom produces a negative ion. 

The corpuscles would seem to be the elements out of which 
atoms are manufactured, and since similar corpuscles are emitted 
by any kind of matter it should follow that any kind of matter 
might be built up of any corpuscles. From consideration of the 
fact that corpuscles are similarly charged and repel each other. 
J. J. Thomson has shown that the valency of an atom may be 
associated with the arrangement of the corpuscle in the atom. 

To summarise : in 1881 Sir J.J. Thomson first showed definitely 
that an electric charge must possess inertia — that is, it must have a 
property similar to that usually associated with matter. In 1899 he 
discovered masses smaller than atoms, to which he gave the name 
" corpuscles." These corpuscles were proved by himself and other 
investigators to be charges of negative electricity. He says : — 

" The whole mass of anv body is just the mass of ether surrounding the 
body which is carried along V)y the Faradav tubes associated with the atoms 
of the body. In fact, all mass is mass of tlie ether, and all kinetic energy 
kinetic energy of the ether." 

This view, it should be said, requires the density of the ether to 
be immensely greater than that of any known substance. 

The spectra of the stars vary in their character — some show just 
a few bright lines, indicating that the matter composing them is 
still in a gaseous condition. This is particularly the case with the 
white star Snius, which shows chiefly the spectrum of hydrogen 
and helium. Yellow stars show many metal lines, and in red stars 
of the Betelgeuse type we have evidence that compounds such as 
CO:; must exist there. The white stars are supposed to be hotter 
than the yellow stars, of which our sun is a representative, while 
the red stars are believed to be less hot than the yellow. Now, 
the hotter the star the simpler must be the constitution of the 
molecules or. perhaps, the atoms composing the matter, so that 
we may consider that the process of stellar evolution is really that 
of the evolution of matter, viz., that of simple, perhaps inert gases, 
to that of the most energetic of the chemical elements. Helium 
we must I'egard as a very simple kind of matter, more so even than 
hydrogen, although its spectrum is a little more complex. That 
may be due to the circumstance, not at all improbable, that helium 
is really a complex body which may with more refined chemical 
and physical methods be resolved into the "primordial" element 
from which all other kinds of matter are evolved. 

Probably in the sun itself the process is going on continuously, 
for the higher atmosphere of the sun gives spectra composed of 
few bright lines, indicating that the matter there must be intensely 
hot. The spectra of the bottom of the cavities which we call 
sunspots, indicate that compounds must be present. Of course, 


in this connection it must be noted that the pressure in the higher 
regions of the sun's atmosphere is small compared with the pressure 
near or at the surface, so that pressure as well as temperature may 
have an important influence on the evolution of the more complex 
from the simple matter. It may be of interest to note that a bright 
line is present in the spectrum of the sun's atmosphere which does 
not appear to be produced by any kind of terrestrial matter. To 
the substance producing this line the name coronium has been 
given. It will be remembered that helium was the name given by 
Lockyer to an unknown element observed in the sun's spectrum. 
At that time helium was unknown on the earth, but we now find 
that it is present in practically everything terrestrial — probably 
celestial as well. Coronium again, while not yet isolated on the 
earth, appears to be widely diffused in space, as is shown by the 
spectra of comets' nebulae, and even in the light reflected from the 
sky itself, so that coronium may be with helium, either one of the 
initial or, it is fair to add, one of the final conditions of matter. 

What, then, are the conclusions that can be drawn at the present 
time as to the nature of matter ? Perhaps it is wrong to use the 
word conclusion, because all over the world the problem is being 
attacked from all points of view, and even at this moment some 
momentous discovery may be on the eve of birth. 

The chemists of last century spoke of matter as being 
indestructible and, of course, increatable. Its form could be 
changed, but the great aim of the chemist was to show that after 
he had put matter through any series of changes, the ultimate 
mass was the same as the original mass. Has this doctrine been 
in any way overturned ? If matter has been destroyed, where has 
it gone — if matter has been created, from what has it been made ? 
It is, I think, absolutely certain that matter has not been 
destroyed, although we certainly have succeeded in breaking down 
the unity of the atom ; with regard to the second part of the 
question, we certainly cannot say that new matter has been 
created, but mass has been created if the results of the experi- 
mental work on the corpuscles of the vacuum tube and of radium 
have been correctly interpreted. If mass has been created, out 
of what has it been formed ? The only answer at present is, out 
of negative electricity. What, then, constitutes negative 
electricity ? The answer must be that it is some peculiar modifi- 
cation of the omnipresent ether, not differing essentially from the 
ether itself, yet certainly existing in some modified form. As 
Lodge has rather neatly expressed it, 

" The negative corpuscle may be regarded as being analagous to a knot 
formed on a piece ol string — that is, something which differs in structure 
from the string and yet is essentially string itself." 

According to Kelvin matter may be regarded as something 
analagous to a knot in the ether. (We must trust to the intuition 
of scientific men ; theories need not be abandoned because they 
appear absurd.) Although we hold that matter is indestructible, 
we may still consider the feasibility of matter or mass being made 
from corpuscles, that is ether, that is the progenitor of matter 


IS ETHER. Matter can be changed from one form into another. 
If the process can be carried on in one direction, from a heavy 
metal to a hght one, why not in the contrary direction ? Matter 
has great potentiahties, great power for change, but it can never 
die, can never be destroyed. 

The scientific man is sometimes regarded as a dull creature, 
without imagination, with no regard for anything save hard fact. 
This is not true. Who can think on such subjects as I have very 
imperfectly put before you in this address without being filled 
with awe and wonder at the audacity of an imagination which 
can lead him to picture the origin of all things, to realise that there 
can be no end, that matter must persist ; matter, once created, 
can never die. Do you remember Tennyson's lines, written with 
admirable prophetic insight : — 

" The world was never made, 
It will change, but it wuU not fade. 
So let the wind range. 
For even and morn 

Ever will be 

Through eternity 
Nothing was born 
Nothing will die. 
All things will change." 

Ether will change into matter. 


President of the Section : — C. F. Juritz. M.A., D.Sc, F.I.C. 


The President delivered the following address : — 

Just a century ago Charles Darwin was born ; within two months 
we shall pass the jubilee of the publication of his " Origin of 
Species." It is no hyperbole to assert that all down the last fifty 
years the study of biological science has been tinged by the influence 
of that great naturalist. We may hold the opinions that he set 
forth, or we may differ widely from his views, but to deny that he 
set the course for subsequent students of biology during the last 
half century would be to contradict plain facts. 

All must also agree that, even if, as the late Duke of Argyll 

" the attempt to string all the beads of human knowledge on one loose-tibred 
thread of thought called Evolution " 

has been a failure, it still holds true that 

" the beads remain, ready for a truer arrangement, and a better setting, in 
the j^ears to come." 

or, to adopt Sir J. \V. Dawson's simile. t our " successors may be 
able to secure the pure grains of trutli after the chaff of unproved 
hypotheses has been swept away." 

The branches of study that form the chief pursuits of the mem- 
bers cf this section may be summarised in three groups : Geology, 
Chemistry and Biology. Every one of these may be said to have 
assumed its modern dress since the days when Darwin attended 
Edward VI.'s Grammar School, and ran up and down the hilly 
streets of Shrewsbury. Two of these sister sciences already seem 
to be looking for another change of raiment. 

A century back geologists were divided into two hostile camps, 
and two years prior to Darwin's birth the establishment of the 
Geological Society of London not only laid the foundations of a 
better understanding between Plutonists and Neptunists, but, 
what was far more important, by setting to work to collect and 
study facts, it most effectually checked the fanciful hypotheses 
and vague theories which over-ardent devotees of the science 
seemed all too ready to give rein to. But the fundamentals of the 
science did not thereby acquire finality and permanence, and 
only a quarter of a century ago Suess propomided what was virtually 
a new geology, setting aside the elevation theory in favour of the 
view^ of differential collapse of the earth's crust. Geologists, more- 
over, are exhibiting remorse at ever having associated themselves 

* " Organic Evolution Cross-examined," p. 194. 
f "Modern Ideas of Evolution," p. 241. 


with Laplace's Nebular hypothesis, and are hastening with all 
speed to leave what is coming to be regarded as a sinking ship.* 

Chemistry has undergone some very radical changes during the 
past century : in fact, there is hardly a branch of science that 
has been so protean. We remember the part that Sir Humphrey 
Davy played in the creation of nineteenth century chemistry, 
when, in 1807, the same year that witnessed the founding of the 
Geological Society, he made his epoch-marking discoveries of the 
metals of the alkalies. Since then Dal ton's Atomic Theory has 
come and — no, I shall not say gone, — but it has suffered grievously 
at the hands principally of the physicists — who, as has been said, 
have sometimes furnished the atoms with bells, and at others 
fashioned them into vortex-rings — with the result that to-day 
chemical science is clad in robes whose pattern and embroideries 
are not altogether unlike those that were fashionable in the days 
of alchemy, when the philosopher's stone and the transmutation 
of metals were matters of serious consideration. The outcome of 
all this has been that the subject of the chemical constitution of 
matter presents to-day a " somewhat chaotic state of affairs. "f 
Perhaps some of us are drifting away from the views expressed 
by Clerk-Maxwell in his famous lecture on " Molecules." that 
the atoms " continue this day as they were created, perfect in 
number and measure and weight, "J or from the inference drawn 
by Sir John Herschel after pursuing a similar line of reasoning, 
namely, that their uniformity of type and conduct stamped the 
atoms as " manufactured articles " ;§ but let me remind you 
that, if we do thus drift, it will only be to find under our lee a shore 
that has usually been given a wide berth by scientists, for, if atoms 
are simply concentrated energy, and all " matter is explained 
away as being electricity and nothing but electricity," || the process 
known to theologians as " Creation " becomes at all events scien- 
tifically possible in a manner that has never seemed so feasible 
as it has become within the last dozen years, and we go back to a 
dictum far older than that of Clerk-Maxwell, that " things which 
are seen were not made of things which do appear." That, at all 
events, seems to be whither the New Chemistry is leading us to-day. 

In Biology, too, there are distinct evidences of a change of 
thought. Spontaneous generation, the ignis fatuus of latter-day 
science, has been practically laid to rest beside that will-o'-the- 
wisp of an earlier century, perpetual motion, and, in the opinion 
fo many, the dominance of Darwinism, as connoting development 
by descent through the agency of natural selection, has passed 
its zenith, and is now decadent. Of the fading away of the 
Lamarckian views so strenuously defended by Herbert Spencer, 
perhaps no clearer illustration can be afforded than the fear, to 

* Vide Prof. J. W. Gregory's Presidential Address to Section C, Brit. Assoc. 
Report, 1907, Leicester, p. 493. 

j Dr. Hugh jNIarshall in " Annual Reports on the Progress of Chemistry," 
1908, p. 33. 

X " Scientific Papers," Vol. 2, p. 377. 

> " Preliminary Discourse on the study of Natural Philosophy," p. 38. 
Prof. R. K. Duncan : " The New Knowledge," p. 248. 


which utterance was given by Dr. Francis Darwin in the opening- 
paragraphs" of his Presidential Address to the British Association 
last year, that he was forced to appear as the champion of what 
some of his hearers considered " a lost cause — the doctrine of the 
inheritance of acquired characters."* If we turn to France and 
Germany to-day we shall catch echoes of opinions less euphemisti- 
cally expressed. These may perhaps be best summed up in the 
words of Professor von Hartmann.f He says : — 

" In the sixties of the past century the opposition of the older group of 
savants to the Darwinian hypothesis was still supreme. In the seventies 
the new idea began to gain ground rapidly in all cultured countries. In the 
eighties Darwin's influence was at its height, and exercised an almost absolute 
control over technical research. In the nineties, for the first time, a few 
timid expressions of doubt and opposition were heard, and these gradually 
swelled into a great chorus of voices, aiming at the overthrow of the Darwinian 
theory. In the first decade of the twentieth century it has become apparent 
that the days of Darwinism are numbered." 

To this Professor Albert Fleischmann of Erlangen adds : — :j: 
" After acquainting ourselves with his arguments we cannot help declaring, 
Darwin's assertions are entirely devoid of foundation. As plausible as they 
sound, so little can they be confirmed by positive facts. Hence they can 
claim the value only of a subjective, and, moreover, an unsubstantiated 
conjecture. . . . . . If the combination of abstract notions in this 

theory cannot be proved by actual observation to possess any cogency, then 
it is not even a scientific theory, but only empty phantasy, and its proper 
place is not on the Professor's desk, but in the lumber-room of Science ! " § 

France may be represented by MM. de Qua tref ages and Blan- 
chard. The former writes : — \\ 

" Personal conviction, mere possibility, are offered as proofs, or at least 
as arguments in favour of the theory. Can we admit their validity ? 
Obviously not. The human mind can conceive many things : is thatja 
reason for accepting them all ? " 

In this connection, too, M. Blanchard offers the following com- 
ment : — ^ 

" The realms of fancy are unbounded : but the observer concerned with 
realities can take account only of the facts of science." 

If we cross from Europe to the opposite side of the Atlantic we 
find Professor Shaler, of Harvard, writing : — 

" It begins to be evident to naturalists that the Darwinian hypothesis is 
still essentially unverified It is not yet proved that a single 

* Brit. Assoc. Report, 1908, Dublin, p. 4. 

t " Der Niedergaiig der Darwinismus " in Ostwald's " Annalen der 
Naturphilosophie," vol. 2, 1903 ; transl. in " Pall Mall Magazine," Sept., 
1904, p. 74. 

X " Die Darwinsche Theorie," pp. 102 and 339. 

§ " Nach Kenntnissnahme seiner Beweisfiihrung miissen war erklaren, 
Darwins Behauptungen stehen vollkommen in der Luft. So emleuchtend 
sie klingen, so wenig konnten sie durch positive Tatsachen begnindet werden. 
Sie konnen darum bloss den Wert einer subjektiven, vorderhand unbewiesenen 
Vermutung beanspruchen. ..... Wenn die Kombination der 

abstrakten Begriffe in dieser Theorie nicht durch die Beobachtung als 
zwingend erwiesen werden kann, dann ist sie eben keine naturwissenschaftliche 
Theorie, sondern leere Phantasterei und^gehort statt auf den Katheder in 
die Rumpelkammer der Wissenschaft 1 " 

II " Charles Darwin et ses precurseurs Frangais," p. 151. 

^ " La vie des etres animes," p. 161. 


species of the two or three milhons now inhabiting the earth had been estab- 
lished solely, or mainly, by the operation of natural selection."* 

It is most obvious all round, then, — and this has a far wider 
application than merely to the sciences of our own section, — that 
theories which were looked upon as quite indisputable considerably 
less than a century ago, have since then been fundamentally altered. 
We, too, may rest assured that, notwithstanding all the dogmatism 
wherewith we maj- proclaim our newly acquired scientific beliefs, 
the foundations also of these beliefs will yet be subjected to a good 
deal of disintegration, and it is remarkable that in the past, just 
when some theories have been taken as most positively established, 
they have, all of a sudden, been completely dissipated at the advent 
of fuller knowledge. All this should make abundantly evident the 
folly of attempting to square the transcendental with the limited 
knowledge and ephemeral notions which we may happen to possess 
at any one particular instant. 

Since Charles Darwin's day the scope of the Evolution hypothesis 
has been widened considerably ; indeed. Dr. A. R. Wallace is 
reported to have said that " Darwin must have turned in his 
grave more than once if any echoes of ' Darwinism ' ever reached 
him there. "t j\Iany — perhaps most ordinary men — when speaking 
of evolution, limit their ideas to the organic world — animal and 
vegetable — that is to say, to genetic development : but numbers 
of others would throw back the process to a very much earlier 
date, and accordingly there has been of late a good deal of talk 
about " Inorganic Evolution," and especially about that phase 
thereof which is now generally referred to by the expression. " The 
evolution of the elements." This evohition, Mr. Soddy tells us, 
" is actually proceeding under our eyes."t What we see. however, 
is not evolution but dissolution ; dissolution, which Spencer 
declared to be " the counter-change which, sooner or later, every 
evolved aggregate tmdergoes."§ The recently-discovered trans- 
mutation of radium into helium, which is typical of the kind of 
chemical evolution whereof we are speaking, proceeds, as we all 
know, and as Mr. Soddy himself admits, " from the complex to 
the simple " ; to call this evolution is not only to deal a deadly 
blow at Spencer's celebrated " formula," but such an addition 
to the already multiform use of the word evolution cannot be 
less disastrous to a right understanding of the order of nature 
than failure to discriminate between addition and subtraction or 
between multiplication and division would be to all mathematical 

I must, however, turn from the temptation to discuss trans- 
cendental and theoretical problems to the consideration of matters 
more common-place, namely, some of the practical questions tli^t 
have demanded the attention of chemists in South Africa of late, 
and are likely to continue doing so — possibly with increased 

* " International Quarterly," Dec. -Mar., 1902-3. 

t See " Pall Mall Magazine," Sept., 1904, p. 74. 

t " The Evolution of the Elements," Brit. Assoc. Report. 1906, York, 


§ " Essays," ^'ol. 2, p. 142. 


emphasis — in days to come. Common-place though they be, 
these matters are of special interest at present, for the whole 
national organisation of this sub-continent — hke some of the 
scientific theories I have mentioned — is in the melting-pot to-day. 
Chemistry has hitherto been very much of an exotic in South 
Africa, and we have too long been content to feed on the fruits 
of advances made by students of the science in other lands. I 
do not, of course, undervalue the educational work done here, 
first of all by Professor Hahn, whom I may call our chemical 
pioneer, and then by his confreres in the other colleges of South 
Africa ; and a fair amount of rather routine work has also been 
performed in the somewhat meagrely equipped Government 
Laboratories of the several South African States. With all due 
allowances, however, it still remains true that all the original 
chemical investigations performed in South Africa, even inclusive 
of what has been carried out in private laboratories and in those 
of the Johannesburg mines, is comparatively insignificant when 
contrasted with the constant activity of European and American 
institutions. In the past it has been quite impracticable even 
to dream of undertaking any sort of investigation, whatever along 
some of the lines most prolific in practical results in the older 
countries of the world. It needs, for instance, scarcely any mental 
reflection to bring home to us how utterly beyond the pale is the 
hope of research in physical or technological chemistry being 
carried on under present South African conditions. 

Quite apart, however, from research in pure or in technological 
science, there are numerous matters of very j:)ractical import to 
which we shall need to turn our attention soon if we do not desire 
to be found lamenting our inciifference and our consequent ignor- 
ance — and perhaps our prevenient ignorance as well — ere many 
years are over. 

A moment ago I used two words in a sense which I had already 
explained elsewhere on a previous occasion : those words are 
" investigation " and " research." They are so commonly 
misapprehended that, even at the risk of some repetition, I must 
again refer to them here. Do not brand me as unpatriotic if I 
utter my established conviction that in matters of chemical research 
and investigation we are at this moment practically behind all 
the civilised countries of the world. The facts are undeniable, 
and they are serious facts- if we will but look at them. And in the 
face of those facts consider also this, that even in countries which 
have far outstripped us in these matters, the cry is raised all round 
that research cannot proceed satisfactorily for lack of men. If 
in Great Britain and in the United States of America cause is found 
for such a lament, what, I ask, must our position be ? We go on, 
for the most part, in cheerful light-hearted ignorance of the very 
need for that class of work that England and America are deploring 
that they cannot find enough qualified men to do. 

Eighteeen months ago I quoted what the Editor of the United 
States Experiment Station Record had said regarding research 
and investigation.* The investigator had to set before him a 

* Presidential Address to Cape Chem. Soc, p. 10. 


definite object or ideal to be aimed at. striving to attain that aim 
by scientific methods of procedure, well thought out and matured. 
He went on to say that : 

" this will involve a definite plan of operations, a thorough consideration of 
what is known of the subject and its bearings, both practical and scientific." 
" Too often " (he further said) " there appears to be lacking any well-thought- 
out plan or object ; this is developed piece-meal, and lacks in directness." 

Let me give just one hint here in passing. If we want the young 
men of this great country to become trained and efficient investi- 
gators, they must, from the very start, be drilled into being 
systematic. This obviously cannot be unless those who train 
and instruct them have themselves fully realised what the word 
" system " means. Just here, I think, lies a weak spot in the 
future scientific advance of this land : it is a weakness which 
should begin to be dealt with at a comparatively early age. for 
often, by the time University status is attained, the student has 
already been made or marred as an investigator. 

To return to the subject of " investigation," it is a word that 
irritates many so-called " practical " men, who are in the habit 
of stigmatising it as " theory." And even of those who do not 
look askance at investigation, but. on the contrary, admit its 
value and importance, a large number are up in arms directly one 
speaks of research. How is that ? Director Armsby of the 
Penns^'lvania State Agricultural College once touched the core 
of this objection in a single sentence. He described research as 
investigation directed to answering the question " why ? " — that 
is, directed to the study of underlying principles. Now, the class 
of men under consideration are impatient of abstract principles 
and theories, but welcome what they call " practical investiga- 
tions," forgetting that it is only by crystallising into shape those 
very theories and principles that anything at all practical can 

" The word ' practical ' (says Prof. Hilgard, of California University)* 
has been much abused in connection with agricultural science and practice ; 
it is launched against us as a kind of thunderbolt both by the men who wholly 
disbelieve in the application of science to agriculture, as well as by the poli- 
tician who tries to make capital by denouncing our agricultural experiment 
stations for pursuing any line of research which does not appear to him to 
bear directly upon the operations of the farm." 

The objection which many friends of investgiation have to 
research is due to the relation between the two classes of enquiry 
being analogous to that between applied and pure science ; but 
that very analogy shows the absurdity of the objection, for the 
application of science to utilitarian ends presupposes that some 
science must have been studied ere there could be any to apply. 
Investigation is of undoubted importance and value, but almost 
all the discoveries of science were made by those who were directing 
their attention to pure research. Unfortunately this is a fact 
but little appreciated, even in Great Britain. Thoughtful men are 
beginning to recognise in this a national weakness, and the note 

* " The objects and methods of soil analysis," Proc. of Soc. for promotion 
of Agr. Sc, 1 8th Ann. Meeting, p. 21. 


of alarm has been clearly and repeatedly sounded. Two years 
ago the occupant of the Presidential chair of the Chemical Society 
of London constituted his address a rousing cry to action on this 

" A temporary flicker of excitement is caused " (said he) " when sonie 
sensational discovery is announced, or when some result of immediate prac- 
tical (commercial) value is made known, but even in these cases the interest 
taken is only transitorj' and is narrowed down to the immediate issue ; the 

broad cause which makes such results possible is lost sight of It 

is not always recognised that the so-called practical achievements .... 
do not spring already perfected from the fertile brain of some ' inventor,' 
but are always led up to by numerous discoveries which, according to the 
national standard of valuation, would be considered worthless."* 

Can anyone, after seeing the immense benefit that radium and 
the X rays are conferring on mankind to-day, especially in con- 
nection with diseases like cancer and lupus, and with surgical 
practice generally, dare to go back and sneer at that 
and his wife endeavouring to extract from pitch-blende an element 
of which it contains a smaller proportion than sea-water contains 
gold ; or at the Wiirzburg professor, a dozen years ago, experiment- 
ing, apparently aimlessly, with magnets, and vacuum tubes, and 
cathode rays. Possibly there were utilitarians who scouted the 
idea of any economic importance being attached to Clerk-Maxwell's 
theories regarding the electro-magnetic nature of light : but after 
half a century, those theories are now bearing fruit in a very prac- 
tical way. Disasters at sea have repeatedly demonstrated, within 
the last twelve months, the unspeakable value of the Marconi 
telegraphic apparatus ; but if the late Professor Hertz of Bonn 
had been a Government ofificer his experiments of twenty-one 
years ago on the deflection of electro-magnetic waves by sheets 
of zinc might have been looked upon as so much waste of time. 

There is a kind of utilitarianism which admits that some good 
may ultimately flow from research, but holds back because genera- 
tions may pass ere it fructifies : that may be so, but each generation 
has its own crop of definite practical fruits, and we now reap where 
our grandfathers, with unselfish foresight, have sown ; and further- 
more, many researches in pure science bear practical fruit almost 
immediately, witness the applications of radium. The fact is that 
the man who sneers at and snuffs out research is pursuing a very 
selfish, short-sighted policy, and we simply cannot afford to continue 
such thriftlessness. 

I am not aware that, outside the region of astronomy, any 
original researches in physical chemistry have ever arrived at 
fruition — or even originated — in South Africa, and as to researches 
in organic chemistry there is likewise nothing to tell ; but in 
analytical chemistry rather more vitality has been exhibited. 
Occasional papers on analytical processes, emanating from South 
African workers, are to be seen at times in British and other 
periodicals devoted to chemical science : within the last eighteen 
months, for instance, I recollect noticing such contributions from 
Mr. W. Bettel, of Johannesburg ; Dr. J. Moir, of the Mines Depart- 

* Prof. R. Meldola : Trans. Chem. Soc, Vol. 91, pp. 628, 631. 


ment, Pretoria ; Mr. H. Ingle, late of the Agricultural Laboratory 
at the same place ; Mr. J. S. Jamieson, of the Government Labora- 
tory, Durban, Natal ; and my own colleagues, Messrs. J. Lewis 
and J. G. Rose. 

Investigations in agricultural chemistry have likewise not been 
barren of results. Dr. W. F. Sutherst, of Uitenhage. has been 
busy investigating the stimulating action of manganese compounds, 
when applied to the soil, on plant growth. In my own laboratory 
investigations into the composition of Colonial cereals have been 
undertaken by Mr. Lewis, who has also begun some experiments 
with a view to ascertain any peculiarities of chemical composition 
arising in the bones of animals affected by " lamziekte." To 
another phase of that subject Mr. Ingle, of Pretoria, also devoted 
some attention, and deduced very interesting results. Mr. Ingle 
has also shown the insufficiency of Dyer's method of soil extraction 
as an adequate gauge of the fertility of different soils, inasnmch 
as it takes no account of the rapid renewing of immediately avail- 
able plant food after it has been extracted by growing crops.* 
Personally I have resumed — although, it must be confessed, rather 
tentatively — a long-dormant investigation into the food values of 
various fodder plants grown in the Cape Colony. All these, and 
there are others besides, are but as a drop in the bucket, and out 
of all comparison with what still awaits doing. 

If we turn to mineralogical chemistry, to judge from the published 
records, the amount of original work done in South Africa has been 
sparse indeed. Occasionally a previously undescribed mineral is 
found and analysed, but even of these analyses the greater number 
have been performed in Europe. As typical of the class of analysis 
that I am now referring to may be mentioned the melilite-basalt 
from Spiegel River, Cape Colony, which was analysed by Mr. 
Lewis some years ago.f and the saltpetre from the cave sandstone 
of the Stormberg beds.t Mr. Lewis has also analysed a zeolite 
which is found in a lava near Barkly, in vesicles of which its v/hite 
fibrous radiating crystals occur. This is one of the minerals that I 
have alluded to as probably new to science, and it possesses the 
same composition as scolecite (CaO.ALOs (Si02)3 4-3H.20). although 
differing from the latter mineral physically and optically. § 

There is one branch of analytical chemistry wherein a fair 
amount of work is being done in this country, albeit of a more or 
less routine character. The chemistry of foods is for mankind 
undoubtedly of paramount importance, all the more on account 
of the ingenuity with which sophistication is practised at every 
turn. Dr. W. Ledlie, now of Surrey, was the first to take up the 
work of regular food analysis in South Africa, nearly twenty years 
ago, a work which, in the adjacent colony, devolved on myself 
about four years later. Since then many thousands of comestibles 
of all sorts have been analysed, with results not alwa^-s apparent 
on the surface, but be\'ond a doubt most salutarj' in their effects 

* Trans. Chem. Soc, 1905, Vol. S/, p. 43. 

t ^-G.H. Geol. Commission Report, 1903, p. 51. _ 

X Ibid., 1904, p. 106. 

§ Vide C.G.H. Geol. Commission Report, 1904, p. 134. 


on the community. During the early years of this branch of 
Avork in the Cape Colony, one article of food out of every five 
analysed was found to have been adulterated in some way or 
other ; in other words, about 20 per cent. That proportion has 
now diminished to less than 10 per cent. The sale of margarine 
and other fats under the name of butter was once common in 
the Colony, but for years the practice has been unknown. Skimmed 
and separated milks were freely imported under the guise of pure 
full-cream milk : this practice, too, was soon effectually stopped, 
and skimmed milk henceforth came into the country under its true 
colours, until the recent alterations in the Customs tariff practically 
stopped its importation altogether. During a period of six years 
some 800 vinegars on sale in the Colony were analysed, and of 
these 440 were condemned, being in most cases simplv diluted 
and flavoured acetic acid to which a little caramel had 'heen added 
as a colouring. I advised the introduction of stringent legislation, 
and we have now an enactment which not only protects the Colony 
from the sale of such concoctions under misleading names, but is 
also building up a new South African industry, having for its object 
the manufacture of a good sound wine vinegar. And when at times 
the stoppage of the imported artificial article has been protested 
against on the plea that it was admitted without demur into the 
other colonies, the obvious rejoinder has been to point to the fact 
that those other colonies have not yet adopted a stringent vinegar 

From the subject of the purity of food supplies we turn to 
dwell for a moment on two other branches of chemical investiga- 
tion somewhat akin thereto ; pharmacology and toxicology. The 
chemical control of the drug market is. I fear, practicalh- a dead 
letter at present in all the South African States. In the Cape 
Colony there is a " Food and Drugs Act." but although, during 
the last sixteen years, nearly 18,000 food samples have been 
analysed, of drugs — even though we stretch that word to its widest 
possible limit — less than 400 were examined. Not that drugs do 
not need supervision, for in 1897, when the analytical control of 
drugs was first put into effect, nearly 30 per cent, of those analysed 
were found defective, a proportion which dropped to 14 per cent, 
for the subsequent years, but is still far higher than it should be. 

In the indigenous flora of South Africa the chemist finds almost 
limitless scope for investigation and research. The chemical 
aspect of this question has never yet been seriously considered. 
Practically all that has been published regarding the chemistry 
of the alkaloids, glucosides, resins, oils, and aromatic compovmds 
■existing in plants peculiar to South Africa is comprised in three 
papers : two of these were read before the S.A. Philoso})hical 
Society ; one, by i\Ir. I. Meiring, dealt with a single plant* ; and 
the other, by myself, though more comprehensive, can scarcely 
be termed satisfactory. j" Dr. R. Marloth, in his Presidential 
Address to the Cape Chemical Society a few months ago.t added 

* Trans. S.A. Phil. Soc, Vol. 9, 1897, pp. 48-50. 

t Trans. S.A. Phil. Soc, Vol. 16, 1905, pp. 111-133. 

I C.G.H. Agr. Journal, Vol. 34, pp. 634-638. 


some further information, but everything may be summed up Dy 
saying that at present the only investigations into the potentiahties 
of the drugs and poisons latent in many South African plants come 
as side issues to criminal proceedings against Kaffir " doctors " 
who may happen to kill their " patients " by overdosing. This 
is a most unsatisfactory method of dealing with a matter so worthy 
of our serious attention. 

For our farming community there are scarcely two branches 
of science so closely bound together by the possibilities of mutual 
aid as chemistry and geology. Elsewhere I have striven to illus- 
trate this mutual relationship as it affects the fertility of the 
agricultural soils of the Cape Colony.* Geologicall3^ the coastal 
belt consists of the sandstones and quartzites of the Table Mountain 
and Witteberg series, below the former of which are the slates of 
the Malmesbury beds. The soils of all these, according to many 
chemical analyses made in the Cape Government Laboratories, 
are very poor indeed, and the sandstone mountains yield acid soils 
with a vegetation of rank sour grass. Intermediate between the 
first two formations are the rocks of the Bokkeveld series, and 
our analyses have shown their soils to be of far greater fertility. 
The basin of the Karroo, deficient, unfortunately, in adequate 
water supply- consists of the most fertile of soils as regards plant- 
food, but the presence of alkaline salts may greatly hinder plant 
production even where the water supply is ample. To the north- 
west great bands of limestone traverse the JVlalmesbury slates and. 
shales, and entirely change the character of the latter. A con- 
siderable proportion of plant food is thereby imparted to the soil, 
and, as the rainfall is scanty, the loose sands have retained all 
their original elements of fertility, and are now just awaiting the 
waters of irrigation in order to be turned into lands of remarkable 
productiveness. These facts have been ascertained by chemical 
analyses of the various soils referred to, but without the knowledge 
derived from the studies of the geologist the chemist could not, 
except with very much increased labour, be aware how far the 
types of soil that he encounters in one particular locality would 
be likely to extend unaltered. The time-saving nature of the 
aid rendered to the agricultural chemist by previous geological 
surveys is therefore patent. 

Something similar may be said in regard to the water supply. 
Nearly two thousand analyses of water have been performed of 
late years in the Cape Laboratories, and of these the analyses 
of a number of deep-seated waters have been collated by me.t 
The most important features noticed were that the waters of 
the Table Mountain and Stormberg geological series are exceed- 
ingly pure, that the most saline waters are those of the Uitenhage, 
Dwyka and Bokkeveld formations, and that lime and magnesia 
abound in the waters of the Karroo system ; those of the lower 
Beaufort beds rarely containing sodium carbonate, which, howev^er, 

* " Fertility of some Colonial soils as influenced by Geological conditions," 
Trans. S.A. Phil. Soc, Vol. i8, pp. 7-30. 

t " Underground waters of Cape Colon3^" Pres. Address to Cape Chem- 
Soc, 1908. 


is seldom absent from the waters of the Middle and Upper Beaufort 

The existence of salt springs in the Uitenhage formation may 
indicate the presence of beds of rock salt below, but much remains 
to be done in tracing out this subject. Some six dozen analyses 
of salt from various saltpans in South Africa were recently made 
public by me,* and they represent practically all that has been 
done in this direction. They demonstrate that South Africa is 
able to produce salt of purity equal to any in the world, and in 
such abundance as to obviate entirely the need of importing the 
thirty million pounds which now enter the country from overseas 
every year. 

I 'mentioned incidentally just now the subject of technological 
chemistry in its connection with manufacturing processes, but 
there are other phases of technology in operation in this country 
for which already chemical advice has been of the highest import- 
ance, for instance, in relation to the Government Railway Service. 
In the Cape Government Laboratories over a thousand analyses 
have been performed for this purpose, of such articles as boiler 
waters, lubricating and illuminating oils, coal, sleeper woods, 
tallow, tarpaulin dressings, etc., and very important information 
of great practical value has thus been elicited. 

From these cursory glances at some of the almost routine 
matters that have called forth what little chemical investigation 
has hitherto been carried on in this country, I turn to place before 
you. in conclusion, just one of the many functions which the science 
must fulfil in the Union we are now entering upon. I purposely 
brought to your notice the transitional state of science in my 
opening remarks, because it is a condition wherewith we as a people 
can sympathise keenly to-day. Under the circumstances you 
will, I am sure, agree that the relation of chemistry to agriculture 
should be in the very forefront of our thoughts. It is altogether 
too large a theme to deal with adequately, but let me pass on a 
thought or two concerning just one aspect thereof. 

One of my first recommendations to the Government of the 
Cape Colony, when I first took charge of the laboratory there, 
was that an agricultural chemical soil survey should be started 
forthwith. The results up to date have, I confess, come far short 
of mv anticipations, but good fruit will have been borne if that 
incipient work does no more than form a nucleus from which 
may radiate to every part of the Union a wider, fuller, and in 
every way better network of investigations. As I placed my 
proposals before the Cape Government in 1892, so it is my privilege 
to-day to put the importance of these wider investigations before 
this greater constituency. It is not alone of the chemical analysis 
of the soil that I now speak ; the subject of soil investigation 
extends into a considerably ampler field, and embraces such matters 
as soil physics and soil bacteriology. I would not even place the 
actual chemical analysis of the soil absolutely first in order of 
+ime, for. if only the facilities be given, it should be accompanied, 

*C.G.H. Agr. Journal, Vol. 33, pp. 648-655. 


if not preceded, by a study of the soils of each locahty on the 
basis of their physical i"esemblances, coupled with the natural 
distribution of their indigenous flora. 

We have not been able to do all this in the Cape Colony, because 
the entire work of investigating the Colony's soils has always 
been allocated to one solitary man, and even then it has been 
subject to constant interruption. The United States Department 
of Agriculture, fifteen years ago, devoted an entire Bureau to 
the exclusive work of studying the soil. Besides the Chief of the 
Bureau and his chief clerk, its scientific staff comprises six sections, 
each in charge of a professional officer : one of these superintends 
the physical and chemical investigations of the soil, another the 
fertility investigations, and a third the work in connection with 
soil erosion ; then one is occupied with the subject of soil utilisa- 
tion, another with soil management, and last of all there is one in 
charge of the soil survey. These have each their respective quota 
of assistants, while, in addition, the work of the soil survey main- 
tained twenty parties of two men each in the field during 1904. 
Ten years after its establishment, the staff, originally numbering 
ten, had increased to 127, including 83 scientists and soil experts, 
13 tobacco experts, and 29 clerks and other employes, and then 
the staff was found inadequate for one-half the demands made 
upon it for investigations along its special lines.* 

Someone asks : " What is the use of a soil survey ? " The reply 
is best given from the words of Professor Milton Whitney. Chief 
of the United States Bureau of Soils : 

'■ From its surveys " (he says) " the Bureau is steadily accumulating a 
great mass of information about the various soils found in dilterent parts of 
the country. This will soon enable it to state accurately what soils are best 
adapted to the production of different kinds of cotton, tobacco, corn, wheat, 
and other staple crops. In manj^ localities crops are being grown on soils 
which are not adapted to them. Thus in many States attempts are being 
made to grow wheat on soils so sandy that only a very low yield can be 

obtained In the mountain fruit districts of our Southern 

States certain soils are not only adapted to certain fruits, as apples, peaches, 
grapes, etc., but distinct soils are recognised as best adapted to single varieties 
of these fruits. 

" An example is the mountain soil .... which in ^'irginia is called 
' Pippin land,' because the celebrated Albemarle Pippin does better on it 
than on any other soil. With the present system of classification and know- 
ledge of these mountain soils and their adaptation to different varieties of 
fruits, the Bureau's soil survey parties can enter any of the mountain areas 
of our Eastern States and quickly and accurately distinguish the good fruit 
lands from the poor 

" The investigation of important agricultural industries which have been 
developed on soils with certain characteristics enables the Bureau of Soils 
to recommend safely the introduction of such industries in other localities 
where similar soils and climatic conditions prevail. An example of this is 
the mountain peach industry of Western ^laryland. It was found that 
peaches of superior quality and flavour could be grown on some of the stony 
foothill soils of that section which were worthless for general farming purposes. 
The peaches grown here ripen in season to be placed on the market at a time 
when the supply from other localities is small and prices correspondingly 
high. Upon extending the soil survey into other parts of ^larylancl and into 
the adjoining State of \^irginia the Bureau of Soils was able to recommend 
the introduction of the mountain peach industry in a number of places where 

* U.S. Dept. of Agric. Bureau of Soils Circ, No. 13. revist 

d, V. I. 


conditions ol soil and climate similar to those of Western ^Maryland were 
found. .... 

" The soil survey is of considerable value also in furnishing instruction as to 
the cultivation of different kinds of soils in various parts of the country. 
That sandy soils and heavy clay soils require widely different methods of 
cultivation has long been known, but the great importance of this has been 
most clearly brought out by the comparative methods of the soil survey. . . . 

" As an illustration of the monetary value of the Bureau's work in establish- 
ing the relation between soils and crops, it may be stated that the soils of 
the Connecticut valley, which the Bureau declared were adapted to the 
growing of a superior wrapper tobacco, increased in value more than three 

fold Other instances of the increase of land values through the 

discovery of the adaptation of certain soils to special crops may be cited. 
The trucking soils of the Atlantic seaboard have increased of late years from 
a nominal value of five dollars an acre to 200 dollars or more an acre. The 
rice lands of Louisiana have increased in value from five dollars to fifty 
dollars an acre. The Florida soils, adapted to the growing of pineapples, 
have risen in value from practically nothing to over 500 dollars an acre. 

" Yet another advantage of the work of the soil survey is the accurate 
basis which it furnishes for further experimentation. The mapping of the 
different soils in the several States serves as a true guide for further experi- 
mental work, whether with methods of cultivation, or of crop rotation, or 
with different manures and fertilisers 

" In several instances the Bureau of Soils has rendered valuable service 
to would-be settlers in undeveloped sections of the country. The incorpora- 
tion of companies to open up and to advertise large tracts of land sometimes 
leads to exploitation of regions unsuited to agriculture. The agents of the 
Bureau have been called on from time to time to investigate these lands, 
and in some cases have discovered that they were of little or no value to 
intended settlers, either because of the presence of alkali or because they 

were not adapted to the only crop suited to the area and 

the publication of these facts has saved many home-seekers from investing 
their all in ventures which were bound to prove unprofitable."* 

I remarked, at an earlier stage, on the selfishness that shines 
through the objections to scientific investigation because of its 
benefits becoming visible only in the third or fourth generation ; 
here we have recorded an almost incredible array of the most 
fruitful results of a series of investigations begun as recently as 
ten years before that record was penned. 

It may be asked how one should set about work of this class. 
Well, several phases of the survey may be carried on concurrently, 
but if any portion should precede the rest it should, I think, be 
the collection of data respecting both the distribution of the 
country's indigenous flora and the success, or otherwise, of culti- 
vated crops where such culture is practised. The bushes and 
herbs which grow wild on certain soils constitute so many natural 
indications regarding the condition of the soil, and hence of its 
suitability for this or that form of culture. Thus the natural 
vegetation of a soil may denote a high degree of brackness or 
alkalinity, and that tells us at once that in its present state that 
soil cannot bear — let us say — a crop of wheat. If in another 
locality that same natural vegetation is found to be dwarfed and 
stunted, we may draw the conclusion that there the alkaline salts, 
although present, are less abundant than in the former case, and 
that, consequently, at least some farm crops may be got to grow 
there. Then, again, there are bushes of the type of the rhenoster 

* U.S. Dept. of Agr. Bureau of Soils, Circ. No. 13, revised, dated April 8, 


bush, as it is called, which is supposed to indicate a soil deficient 
in lime, and accordingly unsuited for fruit culture. Other in- 
digenous herbs there are which characterise a soil capable of jdelding 
good returns under cultivation. Our task is therefore to find out 
the meaning of the language wherewith the indigenous herbage 
indicates to us the characters of the different soils. For the most 
part this language is written in hieroglyphics which it is our first 
and foremost function to decipher. Now this important study 
may be neglected, but, like the Sibylline books, the longer we 
delay the more dearly shall we purchase wisdom in the end. and 
it will become practically impossible to carry out the study at all 
when once cultivated fields replace all the indigenous vegetation. 
The opportunity still exists ; the virgin lands of the South African 
Union are to a large extent yet in possession of their natural flora, 
and no one has been more earnest than Professor E. W. Hilgard 
in pleading that in his country at least steps should be taken to 
ascertain this information ere the possibility of procuring it passes 
out of reach for ever. Dr. Hilgard emphasises the desirability, 
not only of collecting such information, but also of mapping the 
data thus procured as speedily as possible. He says : — * 

" Since the object of soil surveys is essentially practical — is to enable us 
either to generalise from the experience had on other lands, or to predict 
the agricultural qualities of new lands — the prima facie evidence of the 
natural vegetation, which results from the secular co-adaptation of soils and 
plants under given climatic conditions, is manifestly of first importance. 
It is almost self-evident that whenever we shall learn to interpret correctly 
and accurately the meaning, from the farmer's standpoint, of the indications 
given by the local floras and sylvas, we shall be able to deduce from them, 
nieasurably, the same results we now gather from long agricultural experience, 
or from culture tests with fertilisers. It is also evident that in countries 
long settled and under cultivation, these iinportant factors become obscured 
and more or less unavailable, by the modification or disappearance of the 
original vegetation under the disturbing influence of human agencies. It 
is, then, doubly important that the original state of things should be put on 
record as quickly as possible ; and this I consider to be, in all cases, the 
first step to be taken in constructing the soil map of a State. Such a 
judiciously constructed botanical map is, in many cases, quite sufficient to 
indicate summarily the agricultural capabilities of extensive regions." 

Failing the natural vegetation of which Dr. Hilgard speaks, w^e 
have, as I said before, the success or non-success of cultivated 
crops and orchards to guide us, and the information to be sought 
with regard to these last is so very obvious that I do not wish to 
insult your intelligence by dwelling on it. 

But a soil survey should not stop short with a botanical map, 
important though the information may be that it affords. Let 
us have our botanical map, but let it be supplemented, with the 
least possible delay, by a physical soil map, noting all along the 
line the correlation between the two ; and either concurrently, or 
soon after, should come the chemical investigation of the soil. 
The physics and chemistry of the soil, and more especially the 
latter, should in their turn be correlated with the geological survey 
of the country, which, if it has preceded the agricultural soil survey, 
will be found of immense value and assistance to the latter. 

* " Soil studies and soil maps " ; in the " Overland Monthlv " for Deer., 


As the distribution of the vegetation has been noted, so the 
distribution of the corresponding soil types is hkewise to be 
observed. During the fifteen years that the Soil Bureau of the 
United States Government has been at work, detailed soil maps, 
on the scale of a mile to the inch, have been published for a total 
area of 150,000 square miles. These maps show how the different 
soil types are distributed over this wide area. The Bureau has 
given so good a lead in the matter of soil classification on a physical 
basis that I feel constrained briefly to summarise its methods. 
The practice is to classify soils in types, series and provinces. Soils 
identical in origin, texture, structure and colour are taken to 
belong to one and the same type, and are given a type-name ac- 
cordingly. By origin is meant geological origin ; all soils derived 
from one particular geological series, or, where greater discrimina- 
tion is possible, from one particular member of a geological series 
would be considered as identical in origin. By texture is meant 
the relative proportions of different sized mineral particles which 
a soil contains. To determine these requires the process of 
mechanical analysis, and soils are by its means divided into silts, 
loams, clays, sands, and so on. When speaking of texture the 
variation of texture between the surface and subsoil layers to a 
depth of, say, three feet is implied. A layer of sand may rest upon 
a subsoil of loam, and this would be different in type from that 
of a soil which is sandy throughout its whole depth. In soils of a 
common origin, therefore, it is difference of texture that ultimately 
determines the type. All soils that are one in origin, and alike in 
colour, but differ in texture, are grouped together into one soil 
series. What has been called the Norfolk series of soils extends 
over nearly ten million acres in the States of Florida, Georgia, 
Alabama and others adjacent. Within that series there are 
thirteen types of soil, the most extensive being the Norfolk fine 
sandy loam, which covers over three million acres. The geo- 
graphical name Norfolk is here used as a series name, the term 
expressive of the texture indicating the precise type of soil. 

Differences of colour are considered sufficient ground for placing 
in separate series soils which are identical in origin and texture, 

" this colour difference stands for a difference in the chemical changes which 
go on in the soil, and which are necessary for the welfare of certain crops."* 

So, too, difference of structure is reason enough for constituting a 
fresh soil series, or for at least temporarily leaving unclassified 
soils exhibiting such peculiarities. Greater compactness, for 
instance, or a more pronounced open structure would give cause 
for such discrimination. Hence, while it is usual to assign to 
one series soils of the same origin and resembling each othei" in 
structure and colour, the texture of the soil indicates its position 
within that series. 

As soils of various types are classified in series, so the series are 
grouped into provinces, dependent upon mutual resemblances 

* M. Whitney: " Soils of the United States," U.S. Dept. of Aa:r. Bureau 
of Soils, Bull. 55, p. 23. 


amongst the series of soils so grouped, and resulting partly from, 
geological origin and partly from the dominant agencies that 
operated in the formation of the soils. Time fails for explaining 
how the work of a soil survey party is carried out in the field, but 
anyone interested will find a brief account on pages 21-22 of my 
Annual Report for 1906 as Senior Government Analyst of the 
Cape Colony. 

Working upon the principles just outlined, the United States 
Bureau of Soils has divided the Union into fourteen soil provinces : 
these are further divided into 86 soil series, and these again sub- 
divided into 715 soil types, each type covering on an average 
about 130,000 acres of the ground that had been surveyed up to 
the beginning of last year. 

And if the American Union has regarded as so necessary this 
work of soil classification, must it not be at least as needful for 
the South African Union ? Rather let me ask, is it not much 
more necessary in our case ? For America may have at her disposal 
resources other than agriculture ; with us it is — or should be — 
paramount as a staple industry. To us, too, should apply the words 
of the President of the Association of Official Agricultural Chemists 
of the United States when addressing that Association's i6th 
Annual Convention in 1899 : 

" The soil is very literally the bottom fact of all agricultural processes, 
and it is to the soil we have given our chief attention ; its chemical com- 
position and physical properties, the quality and availability of the plant 
food in the soil." 

Professor Hilgard. Director of the Agricultural Experiment 
Station of California, in his classic treatise on " Soils." published 
in 1906, says of soil investigation that 

" it is not easy to imagine a subject of higher direct importance to the physical 
welfare of mankind, whose very existence depends on the yearly returns 
drawn by cultural labour from the soil." 

If these views are correct — and it is my conviction that they 
are — has not the time arrived for this important subject to be 
tackled in right earnest in our own South Africa instead of con- 
tinuing merely to be toyed with ? Again I say, we cannot afford 
to ignore what the American people think it worth while to treat 
so seriously, and we may quite fitly apply to ourselves the closing 
words of an address delivered by Professor C. G. Hopkins to the 
American Society of Agronomy at New York fourteen months ago. 
He said : — 

" Permanent agriculture is the only structure upon which the future 
prosperity of the American nation can be secured, and the absolutely essential 
foundation of permanent agriculture is the fertility of the soil." 

How applicable to ourselves ! Especially in this birth-year of 
the new South African nation ! Chemical science will have many 
important functions to perform on behalf of this young nation, 
but the need for understanding more fully the physics and chemistry 
of our South African soils must stand foremost. Therefore I have 
spoken to you on a subject whose urgency has ever been prominent 
before me these many years past. Of course I could not deal with 
the science of the soil in all its aspects ; the chemistry of plant 


food in the soil has been the subject of my remarks on other occa- 
sions, and the great question of brack or alkah was dealt with by 
me at the first South African Irrigation Congress four months 
back. But fundamental to them all, in my opinion, is the subject 
of soil classification on what is primarily a physical basis as I have 
delineated it. When that has been properly attended to we shall 
be better able to give sound advice to practical agriculturists. 
. This, then, should be the very first function that agronomic 
science should underake to perform for the South African Union, 
and I trust that ere long we shall see, not one or two investigators 
at work in pursuance of this aim, but a whole band of workers right 
throughout the Union, and that, as they go on in their plodding, 
and at times perhaps monotonous labour of adding analysis to 
analysis, and piling fact on fact they may ever bear in mind, and 
that the Government of the Union may likewise remember the 
words of Professor Hopkins, which I venture thus slightly to alter : 
" Permanent agriculture is the only structure upon 



President of the Section : — H. Gunn/M.A. 


The President delivered the following address : — 


There are numerous educational questions in South Africa which 
urgently call for consideration, but one of the most pressing — though 
it has probably received less attention than any — is that of providing 
the children in the more sparsely populated parts of the country 
with an adequate education which is at the same time adapted to 
their future requirements. The provision of a comprehensive 
system of education for its people makes serious demands upon the 
resources of even the richest State, and it is naturally the most 
populous centres that receive the earliest and the closest attention, 
because it is in them that the problem can be most efficiently and 
economically dealt with. The greater the commercial or the 
political importance of a centre, the easier it is to secure the interest 
and support of its inhabitants for the establishment and develop- 
ment of institutions which not merely provide for their own im- 
mediate needs but which are calculated to improve their position 
and enhance their importance. We accordingly find that in some 
at least of the leading centres of population there is a sufficient 
supplv of schools of various types, providing not only for elementary, 
secondary and technical education, but for education of a University 
standard as well. Questions do arise regarding these schools, 
but they concern not so much their establishment or maintenance 
as the efficiency of their work and the suitabihty of their curricula. 
Even in the smaller towns and villages there exist schools which are 
comparatively well equipped and staffed with a view to providing 
a general, and in some cases even a liberal education. But when 
we pass beyond these and consider the rural parts of the ; ountry, 
we find, as a rule, that not only is the provision for elementary 
education seriously inadequate, but that even where it does exist 
it is ill-adapted to the special requirements of the pupils. Indeed, 
it would appear that rural schools are looked upon everyvv-here as 
the lowest rung in the educational ladder, and that it is considered 
somewhat idealistic to expect the country child to recei\'e an 
equality of opportunit}' v\'ith his town brother. 

This is especially true in the case of South Africa. Our towns 
and villages are provided with schools which are generally speaking 
efficient. In these the children are able to obtain a good g meral 
education, and any improvements which are needed lie m the 
direction of more skilled teaching, and of a more adequate equipment 
and a wider curriculum. As regards the country districts, however, 


it can hardly be said that any systematic attempt has been made 
to deal with their requirements. The following significant passage 
from the last report of the Superintendent-General of Education 
in Cape Colony will serve to show how the problem has been faced 
in the past. In explaining the three-fold classification of Public 
Schools in that Colony, he says that the Education Ordinance of 
1865 contemplated that 
" at 'eligible stations among the agricultural population' there should be Third 

Class Schools with a teacher at a salary of /60 per annum The 

Third Class School was a small, rural, purely elementary school." 

And to-day the position is practically unaltered. 

" The Third Class School in country districts is still the small elementary 
school, with one teacher and an enrolment of between 15 and 20 puplis." 

What is the case in Cape Colony is true of South Africa as a whole. 
Wherever a few pupils could be gathered together a small single- 
teacher school v/as opened, generally on the initiative of the parents, 
who were naturally concerned for the future of their children; As 
these small schools are intended to provide for the needs of only a 
fev/ families, they disappear as soon as the children grow up, to be 
re-established perhap^^ on a neighbouring farm-. The school buildings 
are therefore, as a rule, of a very simple kind — indeed, often ill 
adapted for the purpose, and not infrequently a disused outhouse 
roughly transformed and provided with a few benches. The 
accommodation for the teacher, who has to live on the farm, is also 
far from satisfactory. Even with the aid of a Government grant, 
the salary that can be offered to the teacher must be poor, and his 
qualifications are generally on a par with his emoluments. Owing 
to the inadequacy of his qualifications and the lack of opportunities 
for improving them, he has little prospect of rising in his profession, 
and it is therefore not surprising if he is somewhat half-hearted in 
his work. In addition to all these disadvantages the few pupils who 
attend such a school are at every stage of advancement and the 
amount of attention which each receives can only be very limited. 
Even with efficient and qualified teachers such schools could not do 
more than provide instruction in the elem.ents of Reading, Writing 
and Counting, together with a small amount of general knowledge. 
With teachers who are too often teachers merely because they have 
failed in other walks of life, the standard of the work is best left to 
the imagination. 

While I emphasise the unsatisfactory nature of the existing 
condition of things, I do not by any means forget that great credit 
is due to the energy and zeal in the cause of education which has 
been shown not only by the various Governments but by the 
inhabitants and the local authorities. The Dutch Reformed Church 
in particular deserves special praise for the keen interest which it 
has always show^n in the schools and for the parental solicitude with 
which it has watched over its people, impressing upon them the need 
for education, and endeavouring to bring facilities within the reach of 
the most isolated farms. The teachers, too, have many of them 
shown great self-sacrifice and devotion in the midst of surroundings 
and conditions of a depressing kind. Nor must we forget the 
farmer, who as a rule does his best, and, if the conditions of his 


school are often far from satisfactory, it is because the difficulties 
are too great to be solved by him single-handed. 

Under the most favourable circumstances the problem of rural 
school supply must always be a difficult one, and the circumstances 
which prevail in South Africa are of an exceptional kind. The 
difficulty of the problem may perhaps be illustrated in this way. 
If we take all the existing schools, public or State-aided, in South 
Africa, and assume that each of them taps an area with a radius of 
three miles, it will be found that less than twenty-five per cent. 
of the total area of South Africa is provided with school facilities. 
Of course, the proportion of the school-going population provided 
with or actually attending schools is much greater, but as far as 
can be gathered from the statistics available, I find that at the 
present time there must be about 80,000, or more than thirty per 
cent., of the white children of school age in South Africa who are not 
attending school, as compared with seven per cent, in a country like 
Scotland. As every town and village is provided with a school, 
it is safe to assume that at least two-thirds of these are children 
living in rural parts ; _ that is to say, twenty per cent, of the children 
of school age, scattered over an immense area, are still without the 
means of education. The figures will serve to show the sparseness 
of the population and the enormous difficulty of providing country 
children with an education of any kind, but in addition to the dif- 
ficulty of that problem, there is the question of the adequacy and 
the suitability of the education which is being provided. 

Difficult as it undoubtedly is, I do not think that the problem 
need be insoluble even in South Africa. Let us analyse it a little 
further and see where the difficulty really lies. It needs no elaborate 
argument to show that, in dealing with the country, the more nearly 
we can approach to the favourable conditions of populous centres 
the more efficient the education provided will be, and the problem 
therefore at once resolves itself into one of how far it is possible to 
so centralise rural education as to do away with the variable single- 
teacher school and replace it by a premanent school with two or 
more teachers. Personally I should like every central school 
to have at least three teachers, and if this can be done great advan- 
tages must follow from the establishment of such schools. There is 
a certain amount of stimulus, both mental and moral, inherent in 
numbers. There is a definite public spirit engendered in a large 
school, and there is the influence of one mind on another. Better 
accommodation and equipment can also be provided. Teachers 
with better qualifications can be procured, as they will be better 
paid and can look forward to a successful future in their profession. 
When there are several teachers, it is possible to classify the pupils 
according to their attainments, with the consequence that greater 
attention can be given to individuals. But above all there is the 
possibility of modifying and extending the curriculum and of 
introducing a course of training which will be better adapted to 
the requirements of the pupils. 

Of the gain in educational efficiency, therefore, there can be little 
doubt. The problem before us, as I have indicated, is whether the 
■effective radius of country schools can be increased, and if so, who 


and to what extent, without imposing any insuperable financial 
burden on the community- 
There are two ways in which this might be done. One would 
be by the provision of boarding facilities of a simple kind at central 
schools, and this solution has been successfully adopted in a con- 
siderable number of instances in this Colony, the children as a rule 
bringing their own provisions and remaining at school from Monday 
to Friday. While much may be done in this way, I do not think 
that this solution can be widely adopted, as the expense alone 
forms a serious difficulty if there is to be adequate accommodation 
and effective supervision. Hostels, however, under the control of 
the Principals or conducted under the supervision of Churches or 
Committees will always form an important factor in connection 
with certain schools, and the children of well-to-do farmers in the 
neighbourhood will doubtless be able to attend in this way without 
expense to the State. 

The other alternative is the provision of daily transport, and it is 
to the possibilities of consolidating country schools by this means 
that I desire more particularly to draw attention. 

In an excellent climate like that of South Africa there is no 
reason why children within a radius of six or even nine miles of 
a school could not be got to attend daily if an effective and in- 
expensive system of transport were devised. There are many 
centres in this Colony, and no doubt also in other parts of South 
Africa, where by this means an attendance of fifty to a hundred 
children could be obtained, with the result that a permanent 
school with several teachers would replace several small ill-housed 
and ill-equipped schools each with a single teacher. 

That a system of transporting pupils to central or consolidated 
schools is practicable, both educationally and financially, in South 
Africa, does not require to be argued on theoretical grounds. In 
several districts in this Colony experiments have already been 
made, largely on the initiative of the School Boards and Com- 
mittees. In every case the railway has been used when convenient 
for bringing children to school, and I shall refer only to parts of 
the country where such means are not available. At one centre 
in the Ficksburg district about thirty children from distances 
varying from four to six miles are transported by two wagons 
daily to school, and in Smithfield twenty-four children are trans- 
ported by one wagon. The cost is about £5 per month per wagon, 
and in these cases at least four additional small schools would be 
required if this scheme had not been adopted. We have not been 
able for financial reasons to grant all the requests for transport 
that have been made, and the arrangements have accordingly 
been somewhat unsystematic. Considerable improvement can 
therefore be effected, but there is ample evidence to show that if 
a definite policy of establishing consolidated or central schools 
were adopted, it would meet with great success and would have 
a far-reaching eft'ect on the type of education which could be 

If, however, we wish to see such a scheme carried out on a large 
scale, and in a systematic way, we must turn to the United States 


of America and to Canada — to Massachussets. for example, and 
Ohio in the former, and to Nova Scotia and New Brunswick in 
the latter. There the same tendencies form.erly existed towards 
the establishment and multiplication of small single-teacher schools, 
with the result that the provision made in the rural districts was 
practically the same as that which I have described as existing 
in South Africa. It was found impossible to improve these small 
schools to any material extent, and moreover, as people were 
drifting to the towns, the attendance tended gradually to 
diminish rather than to increase. Recourse was eventually had 
to a scheme of consolidation, in some cases one central school 
replacing as many as nine small single-teacher schools. The 
system w^as first tried in Massachussets, and there, in 1903, out of 
353 school disti-icts, 285 were spending money on conveyance. In 
the State of Ohio in 1897 nine district schools were abolished and 
a consolidated school built at the centre, and since then the move- 
ment for centralisation has spread throughout the State. Indeed, 
so widespread and popular has the movement become that the 
people boast that their country schools give an education as good 
as that provided in the cities. The movement has extended to 
many of the other States, and, as I have said, has also been adopted 
in Canada. In the latter country, owing to the public spirit and 
munificence of Sir William Macdonald, very important steps have 
been taken in the direction of consolidation of schools and of the 
improvement of their curriculum. His adviser. Professor Robert- 
son, after personally investigating the working of the Ohio schools 
and studying the effects of Nature Study and Manual Training 
both in America and in Europe, initiated experiments, in the v/ay 
of Consolidated Schools with an altered curriculum, in Nova Scotia 
and New Brunswick. In order that the question of local rating 
should not interfere with the experiments the schools were partially 
maintained from the funds of the Macdonald Trust. The results 
of this departure from the former educational arrangements are 
very interesting, but I have no time to go into details. Notwith- 
standing certain difficulties that had to be contended with, the 
scheme has almost invariably proved a success. It has been found 
that not only has the attendance increased but that it has become 
more regular. The salaries and conditions of life of the teachers 
have improved, and the methods of teaching and the curriculum 
have been modified to great advantage. Notwithstanding all this, 
there has been no material increase of cost, and in some cases there 
has even been a considerable saving. 

The commonest method of transport is by school vans, which 
are strongly but simply built to accommodate from 20 to 26 
children. The contract is given annually to some suitable person 
who makes the lowest tender, the School Committee defining the 
routes and the conditions as regards the arrival at and departure 
from the school. 

The change has not been brought about without considerable 
opposition. One can sympathise with the desire of parents to 
have schools as near their homes as possible, and it was to be 
expected that the farmer with children of school age would use 


his best endeavours to get a school on or near his own farm. Added 
to this was a natural anxiety on the part of parents in being required 
to entrust their children to the care of irresponsible persons for a 
great part of the day, and possibly during inclement weather. In 
America, however, such short-sighted opposition has been gradually 
overcome, as experience has shown that with the exercise of reason- 
able care there need be no danger to the children. 

One of the most important advantages of such central schools 
consists in the possibility of obtaining suitable sites and accom- 
modation, of improving the quality of the teaching, and of modify- 
ing and adapting the curriculum to the needs of the pupils. 

As regards the question of sites and accommodation, a suitable 
piece of ground — not less than two morgen, which is the size 
stipulated for in this Colony when a new township is granted — 
should be selected. The site should be formally transferred to 
Government or to the local authority. Care should be taken 
that an adequate supply of water should be available, not only 
for household purposes, but also for the school garden and for 
experimental nature study. Suitable buildings of a simple kind 
would have to be erected, including a dwelling house for the Prin- 
cipal as well as any necessarj^ quarters for assistant teachers, and 
probably also, in some cases, for boarders. I em.phasise the necessity 
for dwelling houses being provided for the tea.chers, as it is only 
in this way that they can retain that position of independence 
and self-respect which will enable them to exercise strict control 
over their pupils and to be a source of moral influence in the district. 
In small country schools where the building belongs to the farmer, 
and where the teacher is perforce an inmate of his house and often 
little better than a retainer, there is too frequently absent that 
feeling of security and independence which is so essential for genuine 
work and for the inculcation of the first attributes of character. 

The question of curriculum is one which is constantly discussed 
and about which there is a great diversity of opinion. Some writers 
press for an education of a utilitarian kind, closely and specifically 
adapted to the requirements of everyday life. In their view the 
children should be taught to realise that schools and schooling 
are things that enter into the fibre of their ordinary lives, and 
that what they learn in school is directly applicable to their daily 
surroundings. They maintain that it is in this way that the 
children get their truest education, and not by philosophical or 
psychological methods, or — as it has recently been described— 
" by sitting in benches and being pumped at by some outsider." 
Others again constantly decry against such a training, which they 
consider to be the outcome of purely economic and consequently 
uneducational demands on the part of parents and employers. 
These insist that intellectual and cultural training should be first 
considered, and that any specialisation of even a minor character 
should be reserved until the later stages of school life. 

The true path probably lies between. As Dr. ]\Iuir states in the 
report from which I have already quoted : 

" The subject is often discussed as it the only question at issue was the old 
dispute as to whether considerations of practical utility or a high ideal of human 


culture should have the greater weight in settling the subjects and details of 
the school curriculum. But there is a third standpoint also from which 
the matter can be viewed, viz., the nature and capacity of the child ; it will 
be advisable, therefore, to premise the following general consideration, viz.^ 
that a child's mind, as well as its body, passes through successive stages of 
development, and that subjects of instruction which are adapted for one stage 
may be quite unsuited for an earlier stage and may even, if prematurely 
introduced, prove injurious to the child's healthy development and prejudicial 
to the object it is desired to effect." 

It is clear that a good, sound general education is the first 
requisite of a" school curriculum. The child must be able to under- 
stand and use his own language effectively, he must develop the 
faculty and habit of reading, if he is to make material progress in 
any direction. It consequently follows that the usual subjects 
of the curriculum, commonly known as Reading, Writing and 
Arithmetic, must form the backbone of the education in rural as 
in other schools. These subjects I need not discuss here : it is 
in regard to the other branches which may be included in the 
curriculum as well as to their adaptation to and correlation with 
the former that any change of importance can be made. 

The children attending rural schools belong, as a rule, to the 
farming community. ]\Iost of the boys will make their living out 
of the land either from agriculture or from stock farming, or from 
a combination of both ; while most of the girls will doubtless 
also have their homes on farms. It is only reasonable, therefore, 
that their education should, as far as possible, be brought into 
close touch with their environment and be so directed that, if 
possible, it will make them take a closer and a more intelligent 
interest in their future work or surroundings. How far this object 
can be attained in the schools is a matter to be carefully considered 
and to be tested largely by experience, but there is little doubt 
that much can be done in central schools by the introduction of 
Nature Study or Elementary Agriculture combined with educa- 
tional School Gardening, and by carefully prepared schemes of 
Manual Training and Household Management. Personally I do 
not believe that much definite instruction of a scientific character 
could or should be given in Agriculture at such elementary schools, 
and, as Lord Avebury has urged, specialisation should not begin until 
the later stages of school life. A good general education is necessary 
before a pupil can appreciate or receive advantage from the more 
or less scientific or theoretical parts of any subject. At the same 
time, children who are accustomed from their earliest years to 
study natural phenomena by observation and by experiment, who- 
are taught to watch the growth of shrubs and plants and flowers, 
to note the ways of birds and insects, to appreciate the wonderful 
changes which the seasons bring, and to take simple meteorological 
observations, must take a more intelligent interest in the world 
around them and must have a greater sympathy with the conditions 
of agricultural life. It is indeed of great importance from the point 
of view of a general education that the awakening intelligence of 
children and their joy in life should be encouraged and be directed 
to the varying aspects of Nature, and that they should thus be 
taught habits of observation, enquiry and accuracy_of thought 


By combining practical work with literary studies the teacher 
creates more interest in school life, and he can in a natural way 
correlate the educational aspects of the school garden with the 
other subjects of the curriculum. Practical Arithmetic and 
Mathematics, though it may not at first sight be obvious, can be 
intelligently taught in conjunction with gardening or its allied 
branches, and the lessons in History and Geography can, to a 
certain extent, be combined with instruction in Agriculture. Botany 
and Domestic Science. 

Boys should also be made to undergo a course of Manual Training. 
In this way they can acquire in a practical manner accuracy of 
observation and of execution, and also obtain opportunities for 
displaying independent thought and originality. The old idea 
that true education is almost entirely intellectual and divorced from 
what is practical is being disproved by the results of Manual Training 
which show that a subject may be both useful and educational at 
the same time. Manual work and Nature Study can easil\' be 

Similarly, special provision should be made for the girls in con- 
nection with the study of Household Science. They should receive 
simple instruction regarding the ventilation, heating, furnishing 
and care of houses, the uses of clothing and the keeping of accounts. 
They should receive a definite course of lessons in simple cookery 
and needlework. It can easily be seen how these subjects can be 
taught hand in hand so to speak with each other, and how the 
origin and historv of the materials can be used by the teacher in 
connection with Geography and Nature Study. 

Nor must we forget the exceptional importance of the laws of ' 
Health. The prime foundation of continued mental capacity is 
bodily health. The old idea that the mind and the body are quite 
distinct and that the one can be cultivated while the other is 
neglected is at length giving way to a conception of the fact that 
body and brain form an organic unit, and that no proper education 
can be given if suitable physical conditions do not exist. Personally I 
feel that it is as essential an element in the education given at 
schools such as I have been describing that children who are long 
absent from home should be provided — not by the State, unless as 
a last resort — with an adequate meal as it is that they should have 
lessons in Reading and Arithmetic. 

In the subjects of Nature Study, Manual Training and Household 
Economy, the lessons should be of an informal and simple kind to 
begin with, and should be gradually made more definite and formal 
as the child progresses. In a school with three or more teachers 
one at least should be specially qualified to give instruction in these 
subjects, and in time doubtless every teacher would be able to teach 
each of the branches. 

While the curriculum should thus be adapted to the environment 
of the pupils, there is no reason why it should be entirely cut apart 
from that of town schools. The literary or purely intellectual 
parts of the curriculum would always receive their due share^of 
attention. In some subjects the rural child would not be so far 
advanced as his town brother, but he would have the advantage in 


some other respects. The brighter pupils who wished to pursue 
their studies would have opportunities of doing so in secondary 
schools with agricultural or technical departments, which will 
doubtless become general. There would, of course, have to be 
correlation between the rural and the town schools, all of which 
would lead eventually to the Agricultural or Technical Institutions 
or to the University Colleges. In this way a complete scheme of 
education would exist, one of the foundations of which would be 
the rural school, from which the more advanced institutions would 
eventually receive a supply of intelligent and observant pupils. 

But after obtaining a central site and adequate buildings for the 
pupils and the staff, and after arranging means for conveying the 
children to the school and providing them with a suitable curriculum, 
there yet remains the most important factor to be considered — 
the supply of properly qualified teachers. I have stated elsewhere 
that I consider the teacher to be the school, and the school the 
teacher. It is his capacity and sympathy and character which 
determine the quality of the work, and unless he has his heart in 
his business and uses intelligent methods, any scheme is doomed to 
failure. Indeed it is impossible to emphasise unduly the impor- 
tance of the spirit shown and the methods adopted in teaching the 
subjects I have been discussing. The teachers must be trained in 
systematic methods of enquiry, as it is essential that they should 
teach their pupils to use correct methods. I do not advocate that 
the teachers of rural schools should be educated apart from teachers 
destined for the towns ; they should be taught together, but in the 
course of training adequate provision should be made for such 
instruction. In France practical instruction in the elementary 
principles of agriculture and horticulture is compulsory in every 
Normal School, though most of the students come from and return 
to the towns. The intention is not to make the students farmers 
and gardeners, but to make them take an intelligent and observant 
interest in animal and plant life, in fruit and vegetable culture, 
and generally in the problems of rural economy. Similarly in 
Holland students have to undergo a course of training in manual 
occupations, and are thus taught to make simple inexpensive 
apparatus in addition to the educational benefit received from the 
instruction. In the Normal School at Bloemfontein a lady gardener 
who was trained at the Swanley Horticultural College, has been 
giving definite instruction in gardening to the students for the past 
two years, and the results of the teaching are very promising. 

The whole question, however, of the supply of teachers — of their 
training, emoluments and prospects — demands earnest consideration, 
and much more extensive facilities for their training are required. 
In all the Colonies provision^ — more or less efficient — is made for 
those demands, but neither the number of students nor the width or 
completeness of their education is equal to the requirements. While 
provision is made for instruction in the subjects which I propose 
should be included in the curriculum of country schools, it is scarcely 
adequate and it will be necessary to enlarge the scope of the in- 
struction and probably to extend the period of training. The 
difficulty which has existed in the past in this country in obtaining 


suitable recruits for the teaching profession has been due very 
largely to the unsatisfactory conditions under which country 
teachers are compelled to work, and the unattractive nature of their 
prospects. With the consolidation of country schools the profession 
would offer a better career both for men and women, and the 
disinclination to take it up would therefore tend to disappear. As 
regards the present staff, a judicious scheme of vacation courses 
would gradually enable the best and most ambitious of them to 
improve their qualifications, and some of them might even be 
drafted into the Normal Schools to undergo a regular course of 
training. In this way the standard and character of the teaching 
might gradually be changed for the better. 

If such a sheme as I have outlined were to be definitely adopted 
in South Africa, where the Governments have more or less of a free 
hand, it would be necessary in the first place for the local authorities 
to select suitable centres in their districts. The establishment 
of such schools should proceed gradually, and only where a good 
attendance would be assured within a radius of six or nine miles. 
To begin with it would be advisable to restrict them to places where 
at least about eighty children could be assembled, in order that the 
staff of teachers might be sufficient to give instruction not only in 
the usual school subjects but also in those other branches of study 
which I have indicated should be included in the curriculum of a 
country school. 

Probably it will be possible to extend the principle to schools 
with a smaller attendance, but in the end there will alwa\'s be a 
residue of children, scattered over wide tracts of country so sparsely 
populated that they cannot be reached by any means except the 
single-teacher school. In such cases all that can be hoped for is 
that the best possible arrangement will be made to secure the 
efficiency of such education as can be provided. By granting a 
bonus or by giving special advantages to promising aspirants to 
the teaching profession in return for serving in these small schools 
for a certain period, it might be possible to induce young teachers 
to spend a year or two in charge of such schools or even as governesses 
to isolated families, and by this means the standard of work would 
be considerably raised. Such an arrangement exists in some parts 
of Australia, where service in the smaller remote schools counts for 
or is made a condition necessary to promotion to schools of a higher 
grade, and the results have been found to be very satisfactory. 
The adoption of such a scheme in South Africa, where the appoint- 
ment of teachers rests with the local authorities, would be somewhat 
difficult, but doubtless even under the different conditions that exist 
in this country some similar arrangement might be made which 
would prove advantageous not only to these small schools but also 
to the teachers who would assist in their improvement. 

One thing at least is clear. If the gradual migration of the rural 
population to the towns which has become such a problem in Europe 
and America, is to be checked in South Africa, and if the country 
children are to be provided with a reasonably liberal education 
adapted to their needs, some definite policy to meet the situation 
must be adopted with as little delay as possible. 



Section 1. — astronomy, Mathematics, Physics, Meteorology, 
Geodesy, Surveying, Engineering, Architecture and 

monday, september 27. 

1. Address by Prof. W. A. D. Rudge, M.A., President of the Section. 

2. Water Vapour on Mars. By J. de Fenton, F.R.A.S. 


3. Measurements of the Intensity of Solar Radiation. Bv H. E. Wood, 

M.Sc, F.R.Met.S. 

4. The Breede River Irrigation Works. By T. E. Scaife, A.M.I.C.E. 

5. Notes on the Magnetic Storm of September 25, 1909. By G. W. Hopkin- 

soN, A.M.I.E.E. 


6. The Search for an Ideal Astronomical Site. By Prof. S. I. Bailey. 

7. The Snowstorm of August, 1909. By H. E. Wood, M.Sc, F.R.Met.S. 

8. Liesegangs Lines. By Prof., W. A. D. Rudge, M.A. 


9. Native Star Names. By Rev. Father Norton, S.S.M. 

10. Early Geography of South Africa and its bearing on Bantu ethnography. 

By Rev. Father Norton, S.S.M. 

11. The Tercentenary of the Telescope. By H. B. Austin, F.R.A.S. 


12. Architecture. By H. Baker, F.R.I. B.A. 

Section II. — Chemistry, Bacteriology, Geology, Botany, 
Mineralogy, Zoology, Agriculture, Forestry, and 
Sanitary Science. 

monday, september 27. 

1. Geology and Mineralogy of Natal. By J. A. H. Armstrong. 

2. A revised list of the Mammals of South Africa. By E. C. Chubb, F.Z.S. 

3. Maize Breeding. By R. W. Thornton. 


4. The Origin and Formation of the Diamond. By W. Johnson, L.R.C.S., 


5. The Chemical Composition of Milk in Cape Colony. By St. C. O. 

Sinclair, M.A. 

6. The Vegetation of the Southern Namib. By R. Marloth, M.A., Ph.D. 

7. Notes on the Fauna and Flora of Sarawak. By J. Hewitt, B.A. 

8. Some Observations on the Genus Widdringtonia. Bv W. T. Saxton, 



9. Address by Dr. C. F. Juritz, M.A., F.I.C., President of the Section. 

10. The bearing of recent theories on the nature of the Earth's interior upon 

the question of Deep Mining. By Prof. E. H. L. Schwarz, A.R.C.S. 

11. The genetic connections between the chemical elements. By J. MoiR, 

M.A., D.Sc, F.C.S. 

12. A system of recording Agricultural Experiments. Bv J. Burtt-Davy, 


13. Lime and Milk. By R. Pape. 


14. The National Museum of the Orange River Colony. By B. O. Kellner, 


15. Dinosaurian remains from Fouriesburg. By A. R. Walker. 

16. Observations on the Stem Structure of Hemetelia capensis. By H. S. 


17. Development of the embryo in Pinits pinaster. By W. T. Saxton, M.A. 

18. Notes on the anatomj^ of Widdringtonia and Callitris. By W. T. Saxton, 


19. Some suggestions as to the Principles of the Scientific Naturalisation of 

Exotic Forest Trees. By C. C. Robertson. 


20. The Saltpan near Haagenstad. By G. W. Cook, B.Sc. 

21. A specimen of Itacolumite (Flexible Sandstone) from Swaziland. By 

Prof. G. H. Stanley, A.R.S.M., M.I.M.E. 

22. Modern methods of Water Purification. By Dr. W. M. Tomory. 

23. The Flora of Portuguese East Africa. By T. R. Sim, F.L.S. 

24. Bearing of Bantu philology on early Bantu life : with flora and fauna 

names. By Rev. Father Norton, S.S.M. 

25. Tue families and genera of the Pteridophyta of the Transvaal. By J. 

Burtt-Davy, F.L.S. , and V. G. Crawley, B.A. 

26. The scientific name of the Florida Velvet Bean : a criticism. By J. 

Burtt-Davy, F.L.S. 

Section III. — Anthropology, Ethnology, Education, History, 
Mental Science, Philology, Political Economy, 
Sociology and Statistics. 


1. Puberty rites of the Bausto. By Rev. Father Norton, S.S.M. 


2. Address by H. Gunn, M.A., President of the Section. 

3. Mental Healing. By the Rt. Rev. Dr. Chandler, Bishop of Bloemfontein. 

4. The value of the practice and teaching of Hygiene in Schools. By Dr. 

P. Targett Adams, D.P.H. 

5. A description of the Modderpoort neighbourhood one hundred vears ago. 

By Rev. Father Norton, S.S.M. 


6. Classics in our Secondary Schools. By J. Brill, Litt.D. 

7. The Black Danger. By J. M. P. Muirhead, F.R.S.L., F.S.S., F.C.LS. 
' 8. State Socialism or Nationalisation. By J. R. Leech, M.D. 

9. Bushmen and their relics near Modderpoort. By Rev. Father Norton 


10. The English Language and Literature in South Africa. By Prof. A. S. 

Kidd, M.A. 

11. Vital Statistics relating to Bloemfontein. By Dr. W. M. Tomory. 

12. Education in the Swiss Canton Basel-Stadt. By A. M. Robb, ]\I.A, 

13. Some notes on the Basuto Tribal Sj'stem, Political and Social. By J. C. 
. ■ t MacGregor. 

14. Sesuto Songs and Music. B}' Rev. Father Norton, S.S.M. 


15. The alleged mechanical basis of Natural Science. By Rev. Father 

Kelly, S.S.M. 

16. Practical Education. By T. W. Lowden. 

17. Weights and Measures for South Africa. By R. T. A. Innes, F.R.A.S. 

18. Agricultural Training of Natives. By K. A. Hobart Houghton. 

19. A brief sketch of the Ethnography of Sarawak. By J. Hewitt, B.A. 

20. Physical Culture and Military Drill in Boys' Schools. By C. C. Grant. 



Bv W. T. Saxtox, M.A. 


In Coulter and Chamberlain's " iMorphoiog}- of Spermatophytes " 
(5) the following remarks are made in connection with the em- 
bryogen" of Conifers : — 

" The whole subject is in need of more detailed investigation. While the 
earlier stages of the embryo are fairly well known, our knowledge of the 
development of the embryo proper is little more than an outline." 

It was mainly with the object of filling in this outline for Pimis 
that the present study was undertaken. A cursory examination 
of certain other conifers, especially Callitris and Podocarpiis, indicates 
that the sequence of events, in later stages, is very much the same 
for all genera. 


Material was collected and fixed towards the close of 1907 and 
again at the end of 1908 and during January, 1909. The first 
series was fixed in chromacetic acid, the second in Picro-acetic 
corrosive-sublimate in the same proportions as used for the Arche- 
gonium and fertilisation stages by the writer (14). It may be added 
that the fixation of the second series was undoubtedly superior to 
that of the first. Delafield's Haematoxylin has been almost the 
only stain employed. In a few cases the triple stain was used, but 
was less satisfactory. 


The development of the proembr^^o has been fully described by 
various writers, the latest contribution being that of Kildahl (iij. 
The series obtained by the writer include all stages of proembryo 
development and entirely confirm the account just cited. 

The present communication therefore starts with the elongation 
of the suspensors and gives a connected account of the development 
up to the time when the main morphological region sare distinctly 


It is commonly believed that the elongation of the suspensors 
forces the embryo cells down into the prothallus, rupturing the base 
of the Archegonium in the process. Hofmeister (10) states : — 

"The increase in the length of the proembryo ultimately ruptures the base 
of the corpusculum." (.Vrchegjnium). 

Apparently this statement has never been contradicted, but the 
writer is convinced that, strictly speaking, the embryo makes its 
way into the prothallus by quite another means. 

If this were a purely mechanical process, not only would it be 
likely that the rosette v/ould be pushed upwards rather than the 

EMBRYOGENY OF Ptnus Pinaster. 55 

embryo doimiwards, but it would be a natural consequence that the 
embryo would be in close contact with the prothallus cells below 
them, and that the latter would be somewhat crushed. It is found 
on the contrary that there is an empty space surrounding, and 
especially in front of, the embryo, as shown in figures i, 4, 5, 8, 9, 11. 

The only cases where crushing of the prothallus cells had clearly 
taken place were after the cotyledons had appeared, and would 
probably be due to a very rapid elongation of the tissues at this time. 
Even this has not been seen in Pinus itself, but in Callitris, and a mic- 
rophoto of it will be published later in connection with a study of 
that genus. 

It is noticeable that in stages considerably before the differentia- 
tion of the cotyledons a definite region of the prothalAis, surround- 
ing tf e embryos, is devoid of starch, and this at on' e suggests the 
presence of an enzyme, such as diastase, secreted by the embryos. 

A series of experiments was carried out during January ,1909, 
when abundance of material was available, in the hope of obtaining 
positive evidence on this piont. The prothalli containing young 
embryos were crushed in water, the extract filtered and tested very 
carefully for diastase. The tests were carried out at four tempera- 
tures and extended over a period of about four days, during which 
time no trace of sugar was formed from the starch used, nor was 
any trace of sugar (either cane or invert sugar) to be found in the 

This proves conclusively that the enzyme presumed to be present 
is not diastase, but the writer ventures the opinion that some 
enzyme of a rather unstable nature, and capable of dissolving both 
starch and cellulose, must be secreted by the em.bryo cells of Pinus. 
This seems the only possible explanation of the space surrounding 
the embrvo. bounded by disorganising, but not crushed, cells 
and nuclei. 

Figures i, 2, 5, 6 represent the most usual sequence of events 
met with in early stages, the four emybro ceils remaining connectod 
and each dividing by a transverse wall, followed by a second trans- 
verse wall in the apical cell. This order is, however, b}' no means 
constant. Figure 3 shows a case in which two suspensors had 
become free from one another a good deal sooner than is usual. In 
one of these two embrj-os the second division was b}' a vertical wall 
in the proximal cell. Coulter and Cfiam.berlain (') mention cases 
in Pinus laricio where the first wall in the embryo cell is vertical. 
No such case has been met with in Pinus pinaster, nor does the 
distal cell in these early stages ever divide by a vertical wall. 
Nevertheless the increase in length of the young embryo is brought 
about almost entirely by the activity of the distal cell, at first by 
transverse divisions (fi.gure 4) and later probably by oblique divi- 
sions. The latter point is inferred from sequences similar to that 
shown in figures 8-10 (note especially figure 9). An obliquely 
placed spindle has not actually been seen, so that it may be only 
that the appearance of an apical cell is simulated, an opinion ex- 
pressed b}' Coulter (4). In any case there can be no doubt that in 
the youngest stages (up to the age of the embryos of figure 8) a 
true iunctional apical cell is present, corresponding to each suspensor 

54 EMBRYOGEXY OF Pinus Pinastcv. 

•ceil, and the writer is inclined to believe that the apical cell is still 
functional up to about the age of the embryo of figure lo, i.e., 
about a 30-celled embryo 

Figure 4 shows a peculiarity which the writer is unable to explain, 
namely, two suspensors supporting an embryo with but a single 
apical cell. Usually, as stated above, there is an apical cell corres- 
ponding to each suspensor cell, i.e., where two suspensors remain 
associated, two apical cells are functional, derived respectively 
from the two original embryonic cells, or where all four suspensors 
remain connected there will be four apical cells. Whatever the 
explanation of figure 4 may be the series from which the drawing 
is made cannot be interpreted in any other way than as shown in 
the figure. In no case is another apical cell to be found in other 
sections of the series. The top embryo in figure 8 looks at first 
sight like another case of the same kind, but the two proximal cells 
here are young embryonal tubes, not the distal ends of suspensors. 
■Campbell (2) figures and describes a similar case in Pinus insignis 
■{see his figure 306 c). After a time the apical cell or cells become 
replaced by a groupof initial cells as mentioned by Campbell (ioc.cit.) 
Figure 7 represents an example of two embryos remaining closely 
associated, but developing independently, a state of things which 
reaches its climax in the somewhat rare phenomenon of incomplete 
twin formation. Attention is directed to this figure, since an ex- 
ample of the phenomenon referred to has recently been described 
and figured in Widdringtonia [Morris (13)], apparently the first re- 
cord of its occurrence in a Gymnosperm. 

The next stage figured (figure 12), an embryo of approximately 
2,000 cells,* shows an interesting feature. Karyokinetic activity 
has now been almost entirely transferred to the proximal end of 
the embryo, and has resulted there in the formation of the periblem. 
The early appearance of the root meristem in Gymnosperm em- 
bryogeny was first pointed out apparently by Lyon (12) for Ginkgo, 
and has been recently described by the writer ( 15) for Encephalartos. 
It is to be noted however that the phenomena now described in 
Pinus are absolutely different from those which occur in Ginkgo 
and Cycads. In the latter the first differentiation is between root 
and stem, whereas in Conifers (probably this is a safe generalisation) 
it is between the perihlem and what later forms the remaining 
morphological regions. 

The writer believes that this has not previously been pointed 
out, although various investigators have published figures of 
Pinus from which the fact might have been deduced. 

A figure of an embryo of Podocarpus is given in Coker's (3) 
account of this genus very similar to the one here given for Pinus. 
Of this embryo (figure 49 loc. cit.) he remarks — 

" There is no indication as yet as to ■v^^here the root-tip is to appear and a 
distinction between dermatogen, periblem and plerome has not arisen." 

but the shape and arrangement of the cells of the proximal meri- 
stem indicate distinctly that this is the periblem, while the distal 
meristem which is fairly sharply differentiated from it, is that which 

* Calculated roughlv from the formula I w r. 

EMBRYOGENY OF PhiHs Pinaster. 55 

will a little later form the growing region of stem apex, cotyledons 
and plerome. 

The position of the embryo of figure 12 in the prothallus is 
indicated io figure 11. together with two secondary embryos, 
which would probably not persist much longer. The position of 
the embryo of figure 10 and two secondary embryos is also indicated 
diagrammatically to the same scale on the right of the same figure. 
Other features shown in this figure have already been discussed. 

Figures 13 and 14 show the outline and structure of an embryo 
when the position of the cotyledons is first indicated. As would 
be expected they arise by the increased activity of as many masses 
of apical meristem as there will be cotyledons. If, however, the 
polycotyledonous condition in conifers has arisen from a primitive 
dicotyledonous* type, as claimed by Hill and de Fraine (8) (9), 
one would rather expect to find two masses of meristem first 
making their appearance and later becoming differentiated into 
separate masses, but there is not the slightest indication that this is 
so in Pi II us pinaster. Transverse sections of embryos of similar 
age to the one here figured show each cotyledon rudiment develop- 
ing to an equal extent. 

At this stage the whole tissue of the embryo is still meristematic, 
but the line of junction between proximal and distal meristem 
(about the middle of figure 14) is more clearly marked than in 
figure 12. Thus we see that about four-fifths of this embryo is the 
peribl m of the root and the other one-fifth stem, cotyledon and 
plerome meristem, these regions not being separated irom one 
■another by any " permanent " tissue. The origin of the root 
cap from the periblem has been accurately described by De Bary (6) 
and its position is indicated in figures 13 and 15. 

The last stage figured (figure 15) shows an embryo somewhat 
older, in which the cotyledons are clearly defined. The outline 
of the different tissues is indicated in the same way as in figure 13. 
The distal meristem has now become much more clearly differ- 
entiated into three distinct parts : (i.) the cotyledons, (ii.) the stem 
apex, and (iii.) the plerome. The latter merges gradually into the 
stem apex, but at a somewhat later stage, when branches of the 
plerome extend into the cotyledons the two are sharply separated. 
The early appearance of a well-marked plerome in Conifers is 
conspicuously unlike w'hat obtains in Cycads and Ginkgo, where 
only one kind of root meristem (no doubt representing the periblem) 
is to be recognised in the embryo. 

Besides the investigation here reported, the writer has followed 
many of the important stages in the life history of this species, 
•esperially pollination, the development of the gametophytes, 
fertilisation and development of the proembryo. 

The occasional occurrence of parthenogenesis (in the sense in 
Avhich Strasburger now uses the term) has already been reported 
by the writer (14). In other respects the life history is very similar 
to that reported by Blackman (I), Coulter and Chamberlain (5), 

*It is perhaps well to point out that the word ' dicotyledonous" is heri: 
used in a purely literal sense and has no reference to the Angiosperms. 


EMBRYOGENY OF Pinus Pinaster. 

Ferguson (7) and others for various species. It is. however, interest- 
ing to note the effect on the hfe history of the cHmate experienced 
in Cape Colony, as compared to that in which Pinus has been 
previously investigated. It should perhaps be mentioned that the 
essential features of the climate of the south-western portion of 
Cape Colon}^ are : (i.) a wet butnot very cold winter, and (ii.) a 
dry and fairly hot summer, the latter starting about September 
and ending about April, while the former occupies the remainder 
of the year. Naturally, in the extra-tropical regions of the southern 
hemisphere, the seasons differ by exactly six months from the 
corresponding seasons in the north, and therefore to compare the 
life history here with that in the north requires an alteration of 
six months in the actual date at which a given stage is found here.. 
For convenience this alteration has been made in the third column 
of the table given below. The dates in Europe and America (which 
are practically identical) are taken from the papers cited above. 
The following table shows, therefore, the seasonal differences 
between Pinus pinaster in South-Western Cape Colony and various 
other species of Pinus in Europe and America, for some important 
stages in the life history. 



Col. I. 

Europe and 

Col. II. 

Cape Colony. 

Col. III. 

Same as Col. II., 
but dates altered 
six months for 


May 20 to June 


July and August. 

January and Feb- 


May 27 to June 

July and August. I January and Feb- 


First division of 




End of July. 

Not seen. 

Prothallus with 
32 nuclei (rest- 
ing condition). 

October to end Dec. to May at June to November 
of April. least (and pro- ! at least 

bably later), i 

Cell formation in 

About June i. 

About Oct. I. 

Young uninucle- 
ate Arche- 

About June 


October 6-27. 

Mature Arche- 
gonium and 

June 15 to July 

End of October 
to November 

About April i. 
April (:>-2;-. 

End of April to 
May 9. 

EMBRYOGENY OF Pinus Pinaster. 57 

"^Attention may be drawn to certain points brought~^out by this 
comparison : — 

(\.) Pollination takes place in the winter in this climate, elsewhere 

in the early svmimer. 
(ii.) The ovule passes the late summer and autumn in the resting 
condition here, but the same stage persists during the winter 
: . ' elsewhere. 

(iii.) Pollination and fertilisation are separated by 14 to 15 

months here, but only by 12-13 months in England, etc. 
(iv.) The Archegonia take longer to mature in this country, 
being found for at least three weeks in the uninucleate 
condition* as against one to two weeks elsewhere. 
One other point seems worth recording, which is that only two 
Archegonia are usually organised in the prothallus of this species, 
whereas from three to five is reported as the normal number in 
other Pines. Occasionally three are found in Pinus pinaster, but 
very rarely more than that number. Probably at least 80 per cent, 
of prothalli contain only two. ^^ 1 

In conclusion, I wish to express my thanks to Dr. H. H. W. 
Pearson for the considerable trouble he took in collecting for me 
some of the material used in 1907 on the Cape Flats at Kenilworth ; 
that used in igo8 was collected in and around Cape Town. I wish 
also to cordially thank Professor J. M. Coulter, of Chicago Univer- 
sity, for very kindly sending me on loan certain back numbers of 
the " Botanical Gazette," containing papers to which I had 
occasion to refer. The microscopic investigation has been carried 
out in the Botanical Laboratory of the South African College, Cape 


The embryo of Pinus penetrates the prothallus, in all probability, 
not mechanically but by the secretion of an enzyme. 

The embryo grows for a time by means of a true apical cell, which 
later becomes replaced by a group of apical meristematic cells. 

Karyokinetic activity is then transferred to the proximal end 
of the embryo, and the first differentiation is between the root 
periblem and the rest of the embryo, which later forms cotyledons, 
stem apex and plerome. The cotyledons are all exactly equal and 
equivalent in origin. 

Certain seasonal differences are noted in the life history of Pinus 
in South-Western Cape Colony as compared with the Northern 
Hemisphere. Only two Archegonia are usually formed in the 
prothallus of Pinus pinaster. 


1. Blackman, V. H. {1898). On the Cytological features of 

fertilisation and related phenomena in Pinus sylvestris, 
L.Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc, 190 : 395-426, pis. 12-14. 

2. Campbell, D. H. (1902). A University text-book of Botany. 

Macmillan & Co., London and New York. 1902. 

3. CoKER, W. C. (1902). Notes on the gametophytes and embryo 

of Podocarpus. Bot, Gaz. 33 : 89-107, pis. 5-7. 

* i.e. After the neck is cut off but before the central nucleus divide:-,. 

58 EMBRYOGENY OF Pinits Pinaster. 

4. Coulter, J. M. (1897). Notes on the fertilisation and 

embryogeny of Conifers. Bot. Gaz. 23; 40-4^^ pi. 6. 

5. Coulter, J. M., and Chamberlain, C. J. (1901). Morphology 

of spermatophytes. Part I. Gymnosperms. New York, 

6. De Bary, a. (1884). Comparative anatomy of the vegetative 

organs of the Phanerogams and Ferns, English transla- 
tion. 1884. 

7. Ferguson, M. C. (1904). Contributions to the knowledge of 

the life-history of Pinus, with special reference to sporo- 
genesis, the development of the gametophytes and 
fertilisation. Proc. Washington Acad. Sci.. 6 : 1-202, 
pis. 1-24. 

8. Hill, T. G., and De Fraime, E. (1908). On the seedhng 

structure of Gymnosperms. I Ann. Bot. 22 : 689-712, 
pi. 35, figs. 1-8. 
g. Hill, T. G., and De Fraine, E. (1909). On the seedling 
structure of Gymnosperms. H. Ann. Bot. 23 : 189-227, 
pi. 15. 

10. Hofmeister, W. (1862). Vergleichende Untersuchungen. 

English translation, 1862. 

11. Kildahl, N. J. (1907). Development of the walls in the 

proembryo of Pinus laricio. Bot. Gaz. 44: 102-107. pis. 

12. Lyon, H. L. (1904). The emybrogeny of Ginkgo. Minnesota 

Botanical studies. 23 : 275-290, pis. 29-43. 

13. Morris, H. S. (1909). Note on an abnormal seedling of Wid- 

dringtonia ciipressoides and a brief account of the vascular 
system of the normal seedling. Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc. 
S.A. 1 : 411, 412, figs. I and 2. 

14. Saxton, W. T. (1909). Parthenogenesis in Pinus pinaster. 

Bot. Gaz. 47: 406-409, figs. 1-7. 

15. Saxton, W. T. (1909). The embryogeny of Encephalartos. 

(To appear in Bot. Gaz. 48.) 


AH ligures drawn from microtome sections with the camera Uicida and 
reduced in reproduction. All represent longitudinal sections of prothallus 
or embryo. In all: — «= primary embryo, 6= secondary embryos, t-= coty- 
ledons, ^=part of prothallus devoid of starch, 6'= original tip-cells, / = base of 
Archegonium, g=periblem, /;=plerome, A = root-cap, / = stem-apex, ;;=free 
nuclei, y = rosette, s=suspensor, / = embryonal tubes, a' = apical cell. 
Fig. I. Suspensors beginning to elongate ( x 100). 

,, 2. Suspensors longer. Tip-cells divided (X42). 

,, 3. Two embryos, each on a simple suspensor ( x 140). 

,, 4. Three embryos, each on two suspensors, but with a single tip-cell 

,, 5. Two embryos — normal (X42). 

., 6. Two embryos — normal. Each on four suspensors ( X42). 

,, 7. Two older embryos, not j-et separated ( x 100). 

,, 8. Two embryos. Tip-cell in one preparing to divide. Note embryonal 
tubes ( x 170). 

J, 9 and 10. Embryos showing apical cell (?) (9 x 170 ; 10 x 140). 

S.A. Assn. for Adv. of Science. 

1909. PL 2. 

W. T. Saxton— PiNus Pinaster. 

EMBRYOGEMY OF Piniis Pinaster. 59 

Fig. II. Prothallus showing position of primary and secondary embryos and 
destarched area. Position of embryo of lig. 10 and two secon- 
dary embryos also indicated diagrammatically on right of 
figure ( x6). 
;, 12. Primary embryo of fig. 11 (x 100). 

13. Outline of embryo v.'hen cotyledon rudiments first appear ( X 23). 
, 14. Part of fig. 13 showing cell outhnes ( X72). 

., 15. Outline of slightly older embryo. Plerome distinctly differentiated 

A NEW ALKALOID. — E. Fourneau reports {Comptes Rendus^ 
cxlviii.) that a new alkaloid, to which the formula C^i Hqg N2 0:5 
is assigned, has been isolated from the bark of Pseudocinchona 
africana. It is crystalline., laevorotatory, does not dissolve in 
ether and produces well-defined salts. Associated with this 
alkaloid is another, which is soluble in ether : this second alkaloid 
the author has not succeeded in obtaining in crystalline form. 

IMITATING NATURE.— The effect of learning to understand 
Nature always appears to be that we at once brush her aside when 
we have wrested from her the secrets which she has so long pre- 
served inviolate. No sooner did we learn the nature of the 
madder colouring matters than we proceeded to prepare them 
artificially — thus putting an end to the cultivation of a valuable 
crop. Indigo is meeting with a like fate, a catastrophe which 
might well have been avoided had scientific assistance been called 
in at the proper time. Not content with making natural colouring 
matters, we set to work to outrival the rainbow in our labora- 
tories, and the feminine world is decked with every variety of 
colour in consequence, although, unfortunately, our blends toO' 
often lack the beauty of those of truly natural origin, which rarely, 
if ever, offend the eye. We congratulate ourselves on our clever- 
ness in thus imitating Nature, but no idea of thrift possesses us ; 
moreover, our attempts to imitate if not to undo her work are 
never direct, but are always made with her aid, with Nature's 
product — coal ; we are no longer content to ride on horseback, 
but must rush through space, and, instead of watching the birds 
fly, seek to emulate them, but always with the aid of fuel won by 
Nature from the soil and air in days long past. Too much is 
being done in every direction to waste natural resources, too- 
little to conserve them, too little to employ man in his proper 
place — as tiller of the soil. Here lies the chemist's opportunity. 
At no very distant date, perhaps, when petrol is exhausted, toll 
will be taken from the sum in the form of starch or sugar, and 
this will be converted into alcohol. {Sectional Presidential Address 
by Prof. H. E. Armstrong at the Winnipeg meeting of the British 


By R. W. Thornton. 

Before entering upon this niteresting and important section of 
the meahe industry, it may be of interest to give some idea as to the 
history of the maize plant. Most botanists are of opinion that the 
maize plant is a native of America and that the original home was 
either Central America or Mexico. As far as can be ascertained the 
inaize plant was unknown in Asia, Europe or Africa prior to its 
discovery in and subsequent introduction from America. Darwin 
states that heads of maize, together with eighteen species of sea- 
shells, were found embedded in a patch which had been upraised 
at least 85 feet above the sea-level on the coast of Peru, and at the" 
Smithsonian Institute at Washington I understand that there is an 
interesting collection of specimens of maize taken from ancient tombs 
and mounds. After the discovery of America the maize plant was 
introduced into Europe and it is now extensively cultivated there 
and in other parts of the world. The following varieties are now 
grown in many parts : — 

(i) Flint Maize {Zea Mavs var. indiirata). In this variety the 
starchy endosperm is enclosed by the corneous endosperm. 

(2) Dent Maize {Zea Mays var. indentata). In this \'anety the 

corneous endosperm extends up the sides of the grain but 
not over the top, hence the starchy endosperm shrinking 
and farming a dent as the grain dries, has given rise to 
the name. 

(3) Pop-corn {Zea Mays var. praecux). Almost the entire 

endosperm is corneous with the exception of a verv small 
proportion at the germ end. 

The other three varieties, i.e. Soft Maize {Zea Mays var. aniylacea), 
Sweet Maize {Zea Mays var. saccharata) and Pod Maize {Zea Mays 
var. Uip.icata) are little cultivated in this country, and are therefore 
of no great practical importance. 

The maize plant is monoecious. The flowers on the tassels on 
the top of the stalk are the male flowers and the silks represent the 
female flowers. 

In maize breeding the principle involved is much the same as 
that of stock-breeding. The first consideration is the determining 
of an ideal, which ideal is a combination of the qualities suitable 
to local conditions, the market requirements, and the return in 
/ s. d. The means employed in breeding are selection and cross- 
fertilisation. In selection we take what we consider to be the ideal 
and always select accordingl}'. Thus, if we have two or three fields 
of mealies sown with different varieties we find which is most suitable 
to our own conditions and then select from the best plants of the best 
variety. The plants are selected not only according to the ear, 
but also according to the stalk, leaves and grain. Thus, when the 
plants begin to flower we go through the crop and mark those 
showing strong stalks, with no suckers, with large ears set on a fairly 


short shank. The leaves should be strong and broad to enable 
these to manufacture sufficient food to fully mature the grain. 
The cobs should be broad with the grain close set in straight rows 
which run out well top and bottom. The sheaths must cover the 
tops of the ears and the grain should be wedge-shaped so as to pack 
closely on the cob. Length of grain is an advantage, as it gives a 
greater percentage of grain to cob. When the crop has become 
ripe the best ears are selected from these selected plants, and are 
carefully stored. The following season each of these ears is sown 
separately, making one row from each cob. The tips and bottom 
should be removed, as the grain is probably not quite as large at 
the extremities as in the middle of the cob. From actual ex- 
periments carried out in America it is found that if anything the 
grain at the tip will produce quite as much grain in the subsequent 
crop as the seed from the centre of the cob. 

In-breeding with maize, as with any other monoecious plants, 
should be avoided as far as possible, as this reduces vitality and 
productiveness. Therefore, when the rows of mealies in the breed- 
ing plot have reached the flowering stage it is as well to remove the 
tassels from every other row and only to select seed from the 
detasselled row for the following season. This plan makes it ab- 
solutely certain that the plants from which the seed cobs have 
been removed have not been fertilised with pollen from their own 
tassels, and so inter-breeding but not in-breeding is maintained. 
Another method is to detassel the odd numbers of half the rows 
throughout the field and the even numbers for the remaining half. 
This method, is, however, not as certain as the one already described, 
as with a high wind the pollen from plants grown from seed from 
the same cob may yet be carried to detasselled plants also raised from 
seed from the same cob. On the other hand, it gives a fair chance 
to all the rows, as the row detasselled may turn out poorer than 
the one which has not been detasselled, as it is impossible at the 
time of tasselling to tell which cob row is likely to turn out best. 

Cross-breeding should only be taken up by those who fully 
understand it, and have first determined on what lines they intend 
to proceed, otherwise the result is likely to be disastrous. Before 
dealing with this question I may state that in America it seems to 
-be felt that there is quite as much to be said for broad breeding as 
there is for narrow breeding, as far as the maize crop is concerned. 
Mendel's Laws are being applied to the breeding of grain to a great 
extent, and this being the case, it is necessary to find out which are 
the dominant and which are the recessive characters. The law of 
dominance may be applied provided that the parents which are 
used for crossing are pure-bred. If the parents are not pure-bred 
the characters will not occur in the definite proportions which they 
should do, namely one of the recessive to every three dominant. 
Thus if for crossing purposes we were to take the 75% of dominant 
seeds and were to cross these with another strain our calculations 
would be entirely upset. If, however, we took the 25% of grain 
showing the recessive character and crossed this with another pure 


strain we could then be certain of the result, so long as the recessive 
seed is pollinated by plants bearing the recessive character from, 
generation to generation. For example, let us take a white and 
yellow mealie, yellow being dominant over whiteness. Take the 
pollen from the yellow variety and dust the silks of the white. 
The grain produced will all be yellow. This seed is then sown the 
following season, and if we have sufficient grains, say several 
thousands, we shall find that the progenv from the first cross will 
give us 25% of white grains and the remaining 75^0 ^^'1^ bear 
yellow, and yellow and white, on the same cobs. The 25%, which 
shews the recessive characters, will therefore from this date on breed 
pure. Twenty-five per cent, of the dominant grains would also' 
breed pure, but these being of the dominant character it is impossible 
to isolate them from the remaining two-thirds which still have the 
recessive character present, as the colour is the same. If. however. 
we get another characteristic present, such as earlierness over late- 
ness or 7'tce versa this would be possible. 

Mr. G. N. Colhns. Assistant Botanist in the United States De- 
partment of Agriculture, however states that too much attention 
has been bestowed upon uniformity and close selection, so that the 
more practical side of the question, namely that of producing the 
heaviest crop per acre, has been overlooked, and the reason why we 
have not realised the danger of close breeding is that we have always 
selected to obtain the biggest crop, and bred closely in that direction, 
and close breeding and heavy cropping are antagonistic, but always 
selecting for the biggest crop has prevented us from seeing this 
clearly. He proposes a scheme which opens up quite a new field 
as far as the mealie breeder is concerned, and that is to select twO' 
very desirable varieties of corn and sow these in alternate rows in 
two different fields. We will suppose that the varieties are called 
A and B. both white and possessed of desirable characteristics. 
In the one field the variety A is detasselled throughout and is 
therefore fertilised by pollen from the variety B. Thus the de- 
tasselled plants will all give a cross-bred seed. B fertilising itself 
and therefore remaining pure. In the other field B is detasselled. 
and is fertilised by the pollen from A, so we get B a cross-bred and 
A remaining pure. Thus in the two fields we keep the original 
A and B pure and in both fields we also have a cross-bred seed. 
A and B remaining pure gives us the opportunity of re-sowing 
these year after year and at the same time procuring cross-bred 
seed. It is well-known to all stock and crop breeders that bo 
th a cross-bred animal and plant are generally stronger than the 
pure-bred, and it is hoped by sowing this cross-bred seed for one 
season only to materially increase the yield, this means that seed 
from the first cross must be sown every vear. 

Reasons for Crossing and Seed-Breeding. 

In America practically all the land capable of producing maize 
is now annually laid down to this crop, and so to meet the increasing 
demand increased production per acre is necessary. Therefore 
everything is done to bring this about. In Cape Colony this is not 
the case, but it is fullv realised that maize is not likely to retain its 


pre.-ent price and if the price falls to any great extent and the pro- 
duction per acre is low the cost of producing the maize will be too 
great, but if by breeding productive varieties we can double the 
yield per acre it mean; that the cost of production i=; practically 
halved, and therefore maize can be sold at a much lower figure. 
The only additional cost of production by doubling the yield per 
acre will be in handling the extra sivpply. 

HALLEY'S COMET. — In No. 4359 of the Astyonoinische 
Nachrichten (p. 249. September 28), Mr. Crommelin publishes a 
corrected ephemeris for Halley's comet, based upon the elements 
previously published, under the pseudonym " Isti mirantur 
stellam " (taken from the Bayeux tapestry inscription) by Messrs. 
Cowell and Crommelin. for the Astronomische Gesellschaft prize. 
The accompanying chart, compiled, from Mr. Crommelin's data, 
for South African observers, represents the portion of the eastern 
sky before midnight that is now being traversed by the comet. 
It is at present about midway through the constellation Taurus, 
arid it will be noticed that the comet is shown as being in conjunc- 
tion with a Tauri (Aldebaran) on the ist December. Basing his 
deductions on observations made at Mount Hamilton on the 12th, 
13th and 14th September. Father Searle, Director of the Brooklands 
Catholic UniveiSJty Observatory. U.S.A.. finds that, according to 
the present elements, no transit of the comet across the sun's disc 
will occur, but that a slight change in the elements may render a 
transit possible. He considers, however, that it is " highly pro- 
bable that we shall on May 18 be inside the tail." 

Twice during the nineteenth century the earth is believed to 
have passed through the tail of a comet ; the first occasion was on 
the 26th June, 1819, while a transit of the comet's nucleus across 
the solar disc was taking place.* It was only a month after the 
occurrence that it was fully realised what had happened. On the 30th 
June, 1S61, the earth was again involved in the tail of a great comet. 
The tail is declared to have stretched over 118° and extended beyond 
the zenith when the nucleus had already set. This encounter had 
indeed been predicted by Tebbutt, and Liaist subsequently showed 
that the earth must have been 300,000 miles deep in the comet's 

* Olbers in Bode's Astr. Jahybiich. 1823, p. 134. 
f Comptes Rendus, Ixi., p. 953 




By H. E. Wood, M.Sc, F.R.]\Iet.S. 

The Transvaal Observatory possesses two instruments for the 
study of Solar Radiation — an Angstrom Compensating Pyrhelio- 
meter and a Callendar Electrical Sunshine Recorder. 


In the Angstr5m Pyrheliometer the principal part of the instru- 
ment consists of two similar strips of blackened platinum. These 
are so arranged that, whilst one of them is exposed to the solar 
radiation, the other may be placed in circuit with a battery and a 
variable resistance, and have a current of adjustable strength 
sent through it. A small thermo-couple is placed at the back of 
each platinum strip near the centre, and the two couples are 
connected up to a sensitive galvanometer in such a wa^' that when 
they are heated they tend to send currents through the galvano- 
meter in opposite directions. If the sun is allowed to shine upon 
one strip, A, the strip becomes heated by the absorption of the 
solar radiation, the thermo-couple placed at the back of it becomes 
affected and a thermo-current is sent through the galvanometer, 
producing a deflection. The companion strip B, which is shaded 
from the sun, has now a current of electricity sent through it. 
The strip B becomes thereby warmed, and consequently a second 
thermo-current passes through the galvanometer in the opposite 
direction to that of the first. The strength of the current passing 
through the strip B is then varied until the galvanometer shows 
no deflection at all. This being so, the two thermo-currents must 
have exactly the same strength, and accordingly the tw^o strips 
of blackened platinum must both be in the same thermal state. 
The inference, then, is that the amount of energy absorbed by the 
strip A, which is exposed to the solar radiation, is equal to that 
developed in the strip B, by the passage of the electric current 
through it. Now the energy developed in the strip is equal to 
Kri-, where A' is a constant quantity, r the resistance of the strip 
and i the strength of the current. 

Hence the amount of solar radiation absorbed by the strip can 
be determined from the strength of the electric current^necessary 
to produce a balance, and certain known properties of the strip. 
In the actual" apparatus the strips ATand B are interchangeable, 


SO that the effect of any slight differences there may be between 
them are eliminated. 

The details of a determinat'on of the solar radiation are as 
follows : — 

IQOS. April 3rd. Standard Mean time at beginning of experi- 
ment II hours 30 minutes. 
Strip A exposed to sun : current through B for no deflection. 

0*3060 amperes. 
Strip B exposed to sun : current through A for no deflection,. 

0*3063 amperes. 
Strip B exposed to sun : current through A for no deflection, 

0*3072 amperes. 
Strip A exposed to sun : current through B for no deflection,. 

0*3060 amperes, 
^lean value of current = 0*3064 amperes, 
^lean constant for strips = i6*o. 
Intensity of solar radiation = = Ki-' 

= 16.0 X (0*3064)"-' 
= 1*502 gram-calories per sq- 
cm. j)er minute. 

f From a series of observations made with this instrument between 
July ist. 1907, and June 30th, 1908. the value of 1.36 gram-calories 
per square centimetre per minute was obtained for the solar radia- 
tion at Johannesburg (26 degrees 11 minutes South ; altitude 
5,925 feet). The mean radiation for the two mid-winter months, . 
June and July, was found to be 1.30 gram-calories per sq. cm. per 
minute and for the mid-summer months. December-January, 
1.45 gram-calories p)er sq. cm. per minute. 

The intensity of solar radiation at the extreme limit of the earth's 
atmosphere has been estimated to be 3 gram-calories per sq. cm., 
per minute. 

In the case of the Callendar Electrical Sunshine Recorder, the 
intensity of solar radiation is measured by exposing two flattened 
spirals of platinum wire to the rays of the sun. One spiral is 
coated with some highly absorbing medium while the other is 
left bright. The result is that on exposure to the sun there is 
a dift'erence between the electrical resistances of the two coils, 
just as when a black bulb and a bright bulb thermometer are 
exposed to the sun, different readings are obtained. The difference 
between the resistances of the two coils is automatically com- 
pensated by the movement of a slider along a bridge wire. A pen 
attached to the slider then registers tlTe changes in the intensity 
of the solar radiation. The measurements obtained are standardised 

by means of the Angstrom Pyrheliometer. 

As the Callendar instrument automatically records the variations 
of solar radiation from minute to minute throughout the day. a 
measurement of the total daily amount of radiation can be obtained 
from it. In the following table are given the mean monthly values 
of the maximum daily radiation and the total daily radiation ; 
the largest maximum radiation of any day and the largest total 
radiation on anyj^day. 





Maximum Values. 

















1.576 on 
Jan. 22. 

74S.2 on 
Jan. 12. 




1. 541 on 
Feb. 10. 

663.6 on 
Feb. 19. 




1.475 on 
Mar. 3. 

646.0 on 
Mar. I. 

April . . 



1.320 on 
Apr. 1 1 . 

=^76.1. on 
Apr. I. 

]\Iay . . 



1 . 1 1 1 on 
May 2. 

422.5 on 
INIav 10. 

June . . 



1.030 on 
June 6. 

393.1 on 
June 6. 

All these amounts refer to the radiation falling upon one square centimetre 
of horizontal surface. The maximum normal radiation is expressed in 
gram-calories per sq. cm. per min. and the total radiation in gram-calories 
per sq. cm. 

C.B., F.S.S., in his recent Sectional Presidential address, at the 
Winnipeg meeting of the British Association, dealt with the future 
of the world's wheat supply, and gave his audience the assurance 
that there need be no gloomy forebodings as to the world's popu- 
lation outstripping its production of wheat, as predicted by Sir 
William Crookes and others during the last dozen years. 

articles, from the pen of Prof. H. H. W. Pearson, M.A., Sc.D., 
F.L.S., of the South African College, describing his recent journey 
in South-West Africa, in connection with the Percy Sladen 
Memorial Expedition, appear in Nature of the 14th and 21st 
October. In the first article Dr. Pearson explains that the expedi- 
tion was the outcome of a study of Welwitschia. " that most 
remarkable of West African plants." The primary object of the 
tour was the investigation of the biology and morphology of 
Gnetiim africanum, the only immediate relative of \Velwitschia 
south of the Congo. The author mentions the chief flora of the 
districts traversed during the first part of his journey, i.e., from 
Ceres, through Namaqualand, to Keetmanshoop and Luderitzbucht, 
and thence to Swakopmund and Welwitsch — a distance covered 
in about 3J months. The second part of the narrative continues 
the tour to Loanda and Mossamedes, and thence to Humpata, 
Chibia, and Fort Ro9adas on the Cunene River. Very large Wel- 
witschia plants were found in abundance about eight miles south 
of Mossamedes, in the direction of Cape Negro. Dr. Pearson 
was appointed to lecture before the Linnean Society, early in 
November, on his botanical observations made during this ex- 



Bv G. W. HoPKiNSON. A.M.I.E.E. 

On Saturda}/, September 25th, at about 2 p.m., it was noticed 
in the Central Telegraph Office (Bloemfontein) that all the telegraph 
lines were affected in a peculiar manner. At first it appeared as 
though the lines were all in contact, but on further investigation 
it was found that what we generall}^ term " Earth Currents " were 
present on all the lines, or, to use another expression, a " Magnetic 
Storm. " was in progress. On communicating with Cape Town, 
Johannesburg. Kimberley and Port Elizabeth they all mentioned 
that they were affected. 

I took measurements of the currents and found as follows : — On 
a line to Brandfort. a distance of 35 miles, the current varied 
from 5.5 milhamperes positive to the same negative, and remained 
fairly steady for about 20 seconds at 2 milhamperes. On a line 
to Kroonstad, a distance of 120 miles, the current varied from 3 
milhamperes positive to the same negative, and, as in the former 
case, remained fairly steady at 2 milhamperes for periods of about 
20 seconds. On a line to Harrismith, about 200 miles in length, 
practically the same readings were given on the miliammeter, and 
on a line to Port Elizabeth, 450 miles in length, the milliammeter 
registered up to 4 milhamperes. The difference in length of the 
lines did not appear to make much difference in the strength of the 
current — in fact, when changing the meter quickly from one line 
to another the same reading continued. 

I particularly noticed that the currents were both positive and 
negative, and I had continually to reverse my meter to take the 
different readings. 

I compared my notes with a colleague, who had also taken read- 
ings, at Kimberley, and his notes gave the strength of the current 
on a line from Kimberley to Warrenton, 45 miles in length, as 
10 milhamperes at one time during his test ; the reversing of the 
current was also noted by him. 

The disturbances ceased late in the evening, and on Sunday 
morning the lines were quite clear. 

To give an idea of the strength of these currents I might mention 
that the usual current for telegraph purposes is from 17 to 20 
milhamperes, and that in an ordinary incandescent lamp is about 
500 milhamperes or half an ampere, the ampere being one-tenth 
of the absolute unit of current strength. 


The Aurora Australis which occurred on the evening following the 
magnetic storm of September 25th, 1909, was seen at Bloemfontein by 
Mr. Arthur Stead, B.Sc. Bloemfontein is in latitude 29° 7' S. and is 
about 250 miles from the sea. It is believed that this is the first 
recorded occasion of an aurora being seen in such a low latitude. 
In a letter published in Nature of October 21st, 1909, Mr. W. 


Harcourt-Bath states that the Aurora Borealis was reported some 
years ago to have been observed at Darjeehng, India, in latitude 
27° N., but that he was of- the opinion that what was really seen 
was the afterglow or reflection from the snowfields and glaciers 
upon spicules of snow floating above the summits of the Himalayan 
peaks. The Secretary of the Cape Meteorological Commission 
records that a manifestation of what was supposed to be the Aurora 
Aiistro.lis was reported from Carnarvon Farm on the night of the 
25th September, being particularly brilliant from g.30 tOyii p.m. 
Carnarvon Farm is in latitude ji° 34' S. and longitude 26° 44' E.. 
At 10 p.m. on the same evening the Aurora was observed at Dun- 
brody. near Uitenhage, along the south-eastern coastal belt^of the 
Cape Colony. 


Cape Society of Civil Engineers. — Wednesday, November loth : W. A. 
Legg, M.I.C.E., President, in the chair. — " Design of Irrigation Channels to 
prevent Silting and Scouring " : F. E. KanthacR- Discussion continued. 

Cape Chemical Society. — Friday, November 26th : R. Marloth, Ph.D., 
RI.A., President, in the chair. — " The citrate solubility of phosphoric oxide 
in Basic Slags " : Dr. R. Marloth- Results olitained by Petermann's 
solution diftered from those by the present official method of France and 
Germany ; the view was expressed that it is desirable to adopt the latter 
method in South African laboratories. — " The rate of distillation of the vola- 
tile constituents of wine " : J. Lewis. The author had determined the 
composition of successive portions of the distillate obtained in distilling wme 
by the Cognac still, and by means of curves he exhibited the rate of distilla- 
tion of each of the various secondary constituents. 

Chemical, Metallurgical and Mining Society of South Africa. — 
Saturday, October i6th : A. McArthur Johnston, M.A., M.I.M.M., F.C.S., 
President, in the chair. — " The Barberton Goldfield " : A. Richardson- 
The author described the Barberton District mainly from a geological 
standpoint, and gave detailed information regarding prospecting, mining 
and costs of working. — " Assay of cyanide solutions and slime residue carry- 
ing dissolved gold " : A. Whitby- A description of a process initiated 
by the author for precipitating gold from cyanide solutions by means of a 
copper salt, sodium sulphite and sulphuric acid. — " Assay of acid washes 
resulting from the cvanide ' clean up ' bv the use of bisulphate " : L. , J. 


The Geology of Cape Colony. By A. W. Rogers, D.Sc. F.G.S., and A.L. 
du Toit, B.A., F.G.S. 2nd ed. pp. xii. & 491. lUus. and "coloured 
map. IIS. Longmans df Co. {J. C. Jitta <~ Co.) To all interested in 
the rapid progress made by the Geological Survey of the Cape Colonj^ 
during the four ^^ears that have elapsed since this book first appeared, 
the publication of a second edition will be most welcome : all the more 
so in view of the economic importance of the survey. Of necessity the 
book has been in great part re-written. Amongst the portions thus 
completely revised is Prof. Broom.'s chapter on the " Reptiles of the 
Karroo formation." Regarding Karroo palaeontology much additional 
information is now placed before the reader, and a good deal of nev." 
material is also supplied as regards the older rocks in the north : thus 
Chapter IV., dealing with the Yentersdorp and Transvaal sj'stems, is 
wholly new. One of the minor rev-isions to be noted is the disappearance 
of the familiar Dwyka " conglomer^e," the authors definitely adopting 


Penck's term " tillite " in describing the boulder beds oi the Dwyka 
series. To the general reader the chapter which deals with economic 
geologj- will prove not the least interesting part of the book : here, as 
in other parts, Tittle details illustrate the authors' desire to render their 
work as up to date as possible, and so the latest information includes 
such items as the experiments in fashioning the Knysua lignite into 
briquettes, the occurrence of platinum in association with norite at 
Insizwa, and the opening up of the Areachap copper lode. The map 
at the end of the volume shows a considerable advance upon that in 
the older edition. It is noticed that in one or two places very common 
misspellings of Dutch topographical terms are perpetuated ; possibly, 
however, these may be remedied in the next edition. 

High Frequency Currents. By H. Evelyn Crook, M.U., B..>. pp. 232. 
49 illus. 2nd ed. 7s. 6d. London : Bailliere, Tindall &■ Cv.x. 

Transactions of the Geological Society of South Africa. Vol. XII. 
Jan.-June, 1909. pp. iii, 15 plates. 21s. Johannesburg: Transvaal 
Leader Office. Contents : On calcareous beds in the Pretoria series. 
East of Potgietersrust and their metamorphism : A. L. Hall. — Note 
on the schistose structures near the junction of the Pretoria series with 
the Bushveld Plutonic Complex : A. L. Hall. — The Diamond Deposits 
of Liideritzland, German South-West Africa : Hans ^^lerensky. — Note 
on some rocks in the ^'olcanic series of the Karroo System m the Lem- 
bombo jNIountains : J. McClelland Henderson. — The geology of ^klount 
]Mare, near Pietersburg, and its connection with that of ISIoodies, near 
Barberton : A. L. Hall. — Some remarks on the intimate relations between 
Archseology and Geology in South Africa ; with a description of Caves 
containing human and other mammalian remains on the farms Wonder- 
fontein and Rooipoort, Potchefstroom District : William Anderson and 
Prof. G. H. Stanley. — Notes on acid intrusives in the Witwatersrand 
System : M. Weber. — Some Shales in, and observations on. the Dolomites 
of Pilgrim's Rest : A. von Dessauer. — Farther notes on tht- Auriferous 
Conp^lomerates of the Witwatersrand, with a discussion of the origin of 
the gold : Prof. R. B. Young. — Notes on the Tin Deposits in the Vicinity 
of Cape Town : P. A. Wagner. 

Transactions of the Royal Society of South Africa. Vol, I., Pt. I., 
1909. pp. 319 & xvi., 24 plates and 5 text figures. 25s. Cape Town : 
Published by the Society. Contents :• — Cretaceous Gastropoda and 
Pelecypoda from Zululand : R. B. Newton. ^ — A new variety of Ixodes 
pilosus, Koch : J. G. Neumann. — A note on the distribution and hosts 
of Ixodes pilosus Howavdi, Neum. : C. ^^'. Howard. — Transvaal sea- 
level temperatures : R. T. A. Innes. — Some investigations regarding 
" brack " (alkali) in Cape Colony soils : C. F. Juritz. — Contributions to 
the African Flora : Harry Bolus and Louisa Kensit. — Descriptive 
Catalogue of the Coleoptera of South Africa : L. Peringuey. — Preliminary 
note on diurnal variation of Level at Kimberley : J- R- Sutton. — A 
diplostigmatic plant, Sebcea exacoides (L.), Schinz (Belmontia cordata, L.) : 
R. Marloth. — Some new species of Euphorbia from South Africa : R. 

Addresses Wanted. 

The Assistant General Secretary (P.O. Box i497. Cape Town) would be 
glad to receive the correct addresses of the following members, whose last 
known addresses are given below : — 

Boulton, H. C, c/o Messrs, Pauling & Co.. Ltd., Broken Hill, Rhodesia. 

Brooks, Edwin James Dewdney, C.E., Public Works Department, L'mtata. 

Brown, W'alter Bruce, District Engineer, Cape Government Railways, 
Cradock, C.C. 

Carter, Thomas Lane, P.O. Box 25, Luipaards Vlei, Transvaal. 

Gillispie, John, Railway Survey Camp, George, C.C. 

Junod, Rev. H. A., Swiss Mission, Shilowane, Thabina, via Pietersburg, 

Orpen, Joseph Millerd, Luxmore, Belvedere, Cape Town. 

Phillips, Geoffrey John, Acting District Engineer, De Aar, C.C. 

S.A. Assn. for Adv. of Science. 

1909. PL. 3. 


B.A., D.Sc. F.L.S., F.R.H.S. 

(Bom 14II1 Nox'i:, 18 jo, Died :;ofli Xorr.. igog.) 

The closing year of the twentieth century's first decade finds 
" Science in South Africa " still in its infancy. Speaking broadly, 
scientific study, with special reference to this sub-continent, does 
not date back further than the present generation. But such 
a statement cannot be taken as all-embracing : there are excep- 
tions. In one or two branches of science the work of research 
has been pursued successively throughout an already long, and 
ever lengthening, chain of scientists. Astronomy is one of these 
exceptions. The oldest now living cannot have any personal 
recollection even of Fearon Fallows, the first Cape Astronomer 
Royal, but the labours of Lacaille throw back one's thoughts 
another eighty years, to a time close on 160 years ago. There is 
one more exception ; the systematic study of South African Botany 
possesses an honoured bead-roll considerably longer than can be 
claimed for any other branch of science in South Africa. Olden- 
land, Ecklon and Zeyher, Bowie, Drege, Thunberg, Harvey and 
Sonder. Pappe — all these have long passed away, but their names 
are household words wherever South African Botany has been 

To this list of the distinguished dead must now be added the 
name of MacOwan. 

" De mortuis nil nisi bonum, but of the living let us say absolutely 
nil, good or bad ; lest in the one case we cause such modesty as 
they have to blush, or in the other case we make an enemy." These 
were his own words, three and twenty years ago, uttered in the 
course of an address on " Personalia of botanical collectors at the 
Cape." The bar he had himself thus placed across our lips now 
drops away, and in the fewest possible words we would record 
some details of the life and work of one who, for many years, was 
looked upon as a general referee in South African Botany, and in 
all matters pertaining to plant culture. 

Peter MacOwan was a Yorkshireman. He was born at Hull 
nearly fourscore years ago. Like many another before and after 
him, the branch of study which first attracted his attention was 
not that whereon the most important work of his life was built. 
It was to Chemistry that he turned his earlier steps — in fact, he 
had attained the age of fifty-one ere he definitely abandoned 
chemical science in favour of that which claimed his later life. 
His student days were spent in London, and it was at London 
University that he took his B.A. degree. 

In 1859, at the age of twenty-nine, Mr. MacOwan was appointed 
Professor of Chemistry at Huddersfield College, a position which 
he occupied for three years. But the young professor's health 



began to fail and so he migrated to South Aiiica. here to pass 
through the by no means unique experience of finding that under 
the influence of Afric's sun fading youth had given to it the oppor- 
tunity of ripening into a useful prime and a hale old age. And 
so it came about that in 1862 MacOwan accepted the Principalship 
of Shaw College, Grahamstown. Seven years later he was ap- 
pointed Professor of Chemistry at Gill College, Somerset East, 
and retained that post for twelve years. During his stay at 
Somerset East, in 1874. Professor MacOwan was elected a member 
of the United States Academy of Natural Sciences. 

In 1881 he severed his connection with Gill College, and hence- 
forth betook himself exclusively to botanical studies. He thereupon 
received the appointment of Director of the Government Botanical 
Gardens at Cape Town and Curator of the Government Herbarium, 
with which was very soon coupled the chair of Botany at the South 
African College. These positions were occupied by Professor 
MacOwan until 1889. Ever of an active and energetic disposition, 
those eight years were the days of his prime. In 1885 he was 
elected a Fellow of the Linnean Society, and of the Royal Horti- 
cultural Society : three years later he joined the Deutsche 
Botanische Gesellschaft. and in 1889 he became a member of 
the Massachusetts Horticultural Society. 

Professor MacOv/an finally relinquished the teaching profession 
in 1889, but continued in charge of the Botanic Gardens and Herb- 
arium. In 1888, shortly after the establishm.ent (»[ the Cape 
Government Department of Agriculture, Professor MacOwan 
was given a retainer as Consulting Botanist to that Department. 
In 1892 this became a permanent appointment under the title 
of Government Botanist, carrying with it the office of Curator 
of the Herbarium, the Directorship of the Botanic Gardens now 
dropping away. Thus he continued until June, 1905, when, 
owing to accession of the infirmities of age, he found it necessar}' 
to retire from active service. 

With Professor MacOwan's retirement the office of Cape Govern- 
ment Botanist ceased to exist, and in the last of his interesting 
series of reports there is a pathetic reference to a 

"hereafter when the stress of an enforced economy no longer compels the 
Government to hold in abeyance the oldest of the few scientific offices the 
Colony possesses." 

On taking up the appoimtment of Government Botanist, Professor 
MacOwan found himself housed, together with the exceedingly 
valuable Herbarium whereof he was Curator, in a building con- 
structed largely of wooden partitions, vertically above the Govern- 
ment Laboratories. This caused him a constant restlessness of 
mind : he made it his special business to send all the duplicate 
plant specimens he could to the Albany Museum, 500 miles away, 
and, in characteristic fashion, he thus expressed his reason for 
so doing in one of his Annual Blue Books : 

"It is undoubtedly a wise policy that there should, as far as possible, be 
a replica of the Government Herbarium. In the ever present fear of fire 
in a building full of paper and plants at top, and a chemical laboratory at 
the bottom, it is some sort of a solace that we are sending all available dupli- 
cates to vigilant curation elsewhere. Anil if the experience of fire assurance 


offices is reliable, the old proverb noii bis in idem may be taken as a high 
probability. Whichever of the Cape herbaria is burnt, the other is pretty- 
sure to escape, at least until the wheel of time has ground out another century." 

Just a year later the fire that he so much dreaded came, and 
demohshed the adjacent building — a flour mill, the flames licking 
the very window frames of Professor MacOwan's Herbarium and 
burning part of his staircase, but doing no manner of damage to 
his precious charge. With sardonic humour he had the ruined 
building photographed, and the photograph embellished the 
next blue book issued from the office of the Government Botanist. 
But it is an ill wind that blows nobody good, and so one result of 
this fire was that a building was erected, in the rear of the South 
African Museum, specially to accommodate the Herbarium. There 
was nothing pretentious about the appearance of this building, 
indeed a vast wealth of meaning lay behind the Professor's 
euphemistic observation in his next Annual Report, that " the 
architecture is remarkable for its simplicity, and the situation 
is not obtrusive." In further allusion to the " congenial fitness 
of collocation " which absolutely concealed the little Herbarium 
behind the imposing Museum building, the usually prosaic pages 
of the blue book contained the suggestion that " Zoology has been 
the favoured sister, and Botany has been the Cinderella." 

Another matter that caused the orderly and methodical Pro- 
fessor acute mental distress was the manner in -which the Govern- 
ment book-binders treated botanical literature. Thence originated 
the following passage in one of his reports : — 

" The Government, at its discretion, has entered into a contract to liave 
a certain class of binding of very low quality, done at the cheapest rates, 
in order to keep loose papers, reports, blue books and the like in form con- 
venient for reference. I do not mean to be satirical when I agree that the 
binding ma}- be good enough for the matter bound. But when, in ray duty 
as Curator of the Government Herbarium, I have to requisition the binding 
of this or that valuable botanical work — then my troubles begin. The 
contract binding is so utterly- out of the fitness of things belonging to costly 
reference volumes, that I cannot bring myself to send away a book which 
has been a companion for many years to come back degraded into an eyesore 
and a perpetual offence." 

The sequel makes some charming reading, but the curious must 
be referred for this purpose to the report of the Government 
Botanist for 1899. 

For many years Professor MacOwan had been connected with 
the South African Philosophical Society (now the Royal Society 
of South Africa). At its inception in 1877 he — then resident at 
Som.erset East — was elected a corresponding member, ultimately 
becoming the Society's President in 1885. The subject of his 
Presidential address has already been alluded to above. He 
also took an active part in the development of the Cape of Good 
Hope University ever since its foundation, and his membership 
on the University Council, beginning in 1876, when he was for 
the first time elected by Convocation, lasted, through three suc- 
cessive Councils, until 1891. During this period he frequently 
fulfilled the functions of University Examiner in Chemistry, in 
Botany, in Geology and in Zoology, and in 1901 the University 
Council, in recognition of his scientific eminence, resolved to 



bestow upon him the Honorary Degree of Doctor of Science, and 
the degree was formally conferred by the Vice-Chancellor during 
the early part of the following year. The University Council, 
in awarding him the doctorate, placed u]:)on the official records 
the fact that 

" since his arrival in South Africa, Professor MacOwan has carried on the 
study of South African Botany with entliusiastic zeal and great success, and 
his scientific work in systematic and applied botany is held in the highest 
esteem in South Africa as well as in Europe." 

Professor Hahn. in his public eulogium on this occasion, when 
formally presenting Professor MacOwan for the degree, said that 
he believed there was no man living in South Africa who had 
for so long a period been connected with scientific research and 
scientific work as Professor MacOwan had been. 

Professor Harvey, in the preface to the third volume of Flora 
Capeiisis. 1865, expressed his thanks and the thanks of Dr. Sonder 
to Mr. MacOwan, then Principal of Shaw College, 
" for several hundred species of the plants of his district, most carefully 
and beautifully dried. From none of their correspondents have the authors 
received more admirably prepared specimens, and though the immediate 
neighbourhood of Grahamstown is not particularly rich, and has already been 
well l^eaten over, Mr. MacOwan has already detected more than one new 
species, and has added to the Flora the Niixia congesta, of Abyssinia.*-" A 
greater service to South African Botany has also been rendered by Mr. 
MacOwan, in that he has succeeded in introducing among the pupils under 
his care a taste for Botany, which may lead to great results in the next 

In his preface to Vol. 6 of Flora Capensis, 1897, Sir W. Thiselton- 
Dyer thus endorsed and added to the eulogy of his predecessor : 

" More than thirty years have rolled away since Professor Harvey bore 
eloc[uent testimony to the indefatigable services of Peter MacOwan, Esq., 
B.A.. F.L.S., then Principal of Shaw College, Grahamstown, now Government 
Botanist. Time has not staled his enthusiasm for the beautiful Flora amidst 
which he has spent the best years of his life, nor his energy in investigating 
it. ^^'ithout his self-sacrificing aid the present undertaking would have 
been miserably incomplete. By a correspondence which has never inter- 
mitted, he has done all in his power to keep Kew abreast of the progress of 
botanical discovery in South Africa. And he possesses the happy art of 
communicating some touch of his enthusiasm to others, and has thus secured 
the investigation of many parts of the area of the Flora which might otherwise 
have remained all but unknown." 

Sir William coupled the names of MacOwan and Bolus as two 
that " will be for ever memorable in the history of South African 
Botany." t f.i\ 

Professor MacOwan. like his friend Harvey, devoted a good 
deal of his time to the lower groups of plants, in particular the 
parasitic fungi and the lichens. In fact, most of what is known 
at present about South African lichenology is due to his zeal in 
collecting the material for Professor Kalchbrenner and, after the 
death of this specialist, for Professor Zahlbruckner of the Vienna 
Hofmuseum. He also discovered some of the most curious fungi 
and described several of them himself. \\i ^ \ 

In addition to his scientific qualifications. Professor MacOwan 
was a classical scholar of no m.ean order. In facility of illustration 
and apt quotation he was not easily matched, and, when soma 
obscure point needed elucidation, he was as ready with a humorous 


anecdote at one moment as he was with an appropriate passage 
from the Greek classics at another. Now it would be Homer, 
and then Oliver Wendell Holmes, for with both he had an equally 
intimate acquaintance, and one or other of these stores of culture 
and learning seemed alwa^^s at call when he wished to point a 
moral or adorn a tale. The Philosopher was many a time sum- 
moned from his breakfast-table — and, what is more, from that 
" vasty deep " he seemed to come, and to enter into the actual 
being, fibre and marrow, of the speaker, so that the latter appeared 
his very alter ego. Under such circumstances, it is needless to re- 
mark, the botanical class-room was the very antithesis of being 
dry-as-dust : the lectures sparkled alternately with satire and 
humour, while quotation, anecdote and reminiscence combined 
to drive home many a point, which but for those associations 
would perchance have passed unheeded through the sieve-like 
student-mind. His blackboard diagrams — like his word-paintings 
— were generally rapidly accomplished by means of the fewest 
possible master-strokes, but whenever these were made they 
pithily conveyed the exact impression intended, and he was a 
dull student who would remain untouched by the Professor's 
almost boyish enthusiasm. 

Newton had his favourite cats, Clerk-Maxwell his dogs. In 
this respect, as well as in his retentive memory. Professor MacOwan 
resembled the latter. Daily one saw him strolling ofhcewards 
followed by a string of pug dogs, and how carefully a sick one 
was nursed : many a time he was seen walking home, at the close 
of his day's work, with his especial pet under his arm. But, in 
spite of his fondness for dogs, he was none the less an emulator 
of Newton, and a photograph of the herbarium clearly show^s the 
pendent reel, hung in position for the amusement of his feline 

In private life Dr. MacOwan was exceptionally entertaining : 
his vivacity, and the extraordinarily wide range of his reading 
made him a most entrancing conversationalist. His versatility 
was wonderful : there were few subjects with which he did not 
show a closer acquaintance than the average man who chanced 
to be conversing with him. This range of knowledge did not 
even confine itself within the limits of literature and science. 
Bookbinding, seal collecting, wood and metal work and Con- 
fucianism are mentioned as instances of conversational topics 
wherein this wide display of knowledge was illustrated, and, to 
cap everything else that is sub-lunary, he was one of the most 
untiring as well as most methodical of men. To this last qualiiica- 
tion may be ascribed the fact that for many years he examined 
and classified, single-handed, multitudinous floral specimens from 
all parts of the world, and carried on a varied correspondence 
with scores of strangers who sought for information regarding 
South Africa from a cultural point of view, information which 
only Dr. MacOwan's extensive knowledge of the country's climate 
and flora could enable anyone to give. 

Dr. MacOwan's unflagging assiduity is in no respect capable 
of better illustration than by the fact that when he took charge 


of the Herbarium in 1881 the number of sheets of Cape type plants 
mounted up as a study set by Dr. Harvey was about 3,000 only, 
and no representation of the flora of any other country existed. 
At his retirement, twenty-four years later, the total number of 
sheets had increased to 44,000, whereof about 25,500 represented 
the Cape of Good Hope. Precise and methodical in all he touched, 
his ideal of the Herbarium, as he himself once expressed it, was 
" jealously maintained order and precision," and to this, no less 
than to his industry, the vast strides that it made under his care 
are due. During the last few years of his incumbency Dr. MacOwan 
initiated a useful scheme of assisting the High Schools and Colleges 
in the country which gave special attention to botanical teaching, 
by presenting them with collections of named plants as foundations 
for herbaria. Some 1,600 species were thus distributed in 1903 
amongst the following institutions : the Good Hope Seminary, 
Cape Town ; the Huguenot College. Wellington ; the \'ictoria 
College, Stellenbosch ; the Riebeek College, Uitenhagc ; the 
Bloemhof High School. Stellenbosch ; the Oudtshoorn Public 
School : the Rhenish Institute, Stellenbosch ; and the \'redenburg 
High School, Cape Town. 

His persistent energy and vim is also testified to by his excep- 
tionally numerous papers and published reports. In addition to 
earlier v^Titings, he prepared, during the three years preceding 
his appointment as Government Botanist, namely, from 1888 to 
1891, no less than 150 papers and bulletins for Government on 
various topics, and to this collection he added 1,028 more during 
the succeeding fourteen years. This was altogether apart from 
his w'ork at the Herbarium and from his duties first as Professor 
of Botanv and subsequently as Government Botanist. Only a 
very small selection from the compendious list can be given here by 
way of illustration : 
1866. Catalogue of South African plants compiled for the use of the S..\. 

Botanical Society. 
1869. Notuke Capenses. (Linnean Society's journal.) 
1 87 1. Herbarium notes for the use of students of Cape Botany. 
1877. Colonial Stock Food Plants. 
1 88 1. Novitates Capenses; descriptions of new plants from the Cape of 

Good Hope. (Linnean Society's Journal.) Conjointly with H. 

1884. Botanical diagrams fcjr the use of schools of the Cape Colony. 

1886. Personalia of Botanical Collectors at the Cape. (Trans. S. A. Phil. Soc). 

1887. Plants that furnish stock food at the Cape. 

1890. Bitphane tuxicaria and its reputed connection with the Bushman 

arrow poison. 

1 89 1. .Materials for basket-making capable of growth in Cape Colony. 
1891. The cultivation of Sweet Chestnut and Walnut in Griqualand East. 

1 89 1. The use of Eucalyptus extract to prevent Ijoiler scale in locomotives. 

1892. Indentilication of a collection of the pasture grasses of the Orange 

Free State. 

1892. On teaching farm economy at the Cape. 

1893. O^^ th^ Cape Buchus commercially esteemed, and a use for other 

disregarded species. 

1894. On Cape medicinal plants worth ctimmercial exploitation. 

1895. On the culture of rhubarb at the Cape. 

1895. On the production of essential oils at the Cape as a petite cult lire. 

1896. On the possibility of utilising Euphorbia caoutchouc. 
1896. \\'attle bark and wattle-growing at the Cape. 


1S96. The relative proportion of invert sugar and sncrose in the ordinary 

fruits and the consequent dietetic relations. 
1896. The sterility of strawberries and its causes. 

1896. The tan value of the 'Ntolwane, Elepliantorrhiza Burchellii, Bth. 

1897. ihe production of castor oil for machine purposes at the Cape. 

1897. The distillation of the essential oils of buchu and the Cape Pelargonia. 

1898. Some points in tobacco culture. 

1898. Prospects of oilv? growing at the Cape. 

1898. The modes of evaluing the solid contents in the juice of Cape Aloes 

by gravimetry. 

1899. The resin produced from Sarcucaulou Bitrinanui . DC and proposed 

to be used as a substitute for sandarac. 

1899. The culture of the Cape Gooseberry {P/iysalis ptibesceu^, L.). 

1900. The Intlamyembe poison [Acocanthera venenata. Don.). • 
1900. On schemes for paper-making at the Cape. 

1900. The Tsama melon of the Kalihari. 

1901. On the high food-value of Povtulacaria afra, Jcq.. the spekboom, 

and its special adaptability to a stony, arid country. 

1902. Lathyrism, or poisoning with certain Leguminos.T' in pasture veld. 
1902. Certain fibrous Cape grasses capable of replacing Esparto in the 

manufacture of paper. 
1902. On the culture of chicory. 

1902. The amount of hygroscopic moisture absorbed by various soils. 

1903. On the several plants used at the Cape as substitutes for tea. 

1904. On the improbability of any profit being made at the Cape out of 

kelp from sea- weed. 

1904. The millets and their place in Cape Agriculture. 

1905. Personalia respecting the botanical work done bv Oldenland and 

P. J. Bergius. 

One paper has so droll a title that it merits a place all to itself. 
The title spea.ks volumes of indignation and scorn. This paper 
was issued in 1898 and was entitled " On the offer of a wine- 
expert to come over from Europe and teach us things." 

It is always difficult for a master of satire to restrain his natural 
bent, and so it came that even the familiar blue wrappers that 
usually form the exterior of Government publications covered 
far more entertaining reading in the Government Botanist's reports 
than is as a general rule to be found in blue books. The many 
with whom he corresponded through the pages of the Agricultural 
Journal of the Cape Colony will also treasure lively remembrances 
of the chatty, but often incisive, nature of his replies to their 
queries. Of enquiring correspondents Professor MacOwan ever 
had a large circle, but the influx from abroad that occurred just 
after the war entirely reversed the order. Instead of thirsting 
for knowledge these new arrivals were consumed with eagerness— 
to adopt the Professor's earlier phrase — " to teach us things," 
and thus did he express his mind concerning them : 

" Some amateurs, not previously engaged in any sort ot farm culture, 
were sanguine in their expectation of being able to do the Cape a good turn 
and themselves make a fortune by tlie introduction of new staples. They 
proposed to grow olives, sunflower seed, ground-nut, and palma christi for 
oil pressing, to produce hemp, fla.x and rhea fibre, cultivate rice, sugar-beet 
and cane, indigo, and what they called ' India rubber trees.' It was quite 
oppressive to be taught so much at once. My advice 'to all and sundry, 
however, was very homeh^ and perhaps discouraging, viz., to bank then- 
money so as to be out of reach and l)ear interest, and then go as improvers 
and general helps on some well-kept Cape farm for a year or so, even without 

salary I know of some instances in which this blunt counsel has 

been taken to the letter, with excellent results, but the prescription is not 
acceptable to everybody." 


Right through well-nigh a score of years — i.e.. from the latter 
half of the eighties until deep into the present decade — the familiar 
initials P.M.O. were constantly to be seen in the correspondence 
columns gf the Cape Agricultural Journal, under paragraphs of 
the most varied contents, written in response to the queries of 
agriculturists and others in all parts of South Africa, and the 
enquirer often got much information that he did not seek. Many 
of these paragraphs were as trenchant as they were instructive : 
their number was legion, but one or two illustrations may not be 
out of place here. A correspondent had complained that his 
orange trees were dying from the top as the effect of some un- 
known disease ; the Professor, after hinting that the trees had 
become exhausted through leafing and fruiting without the supply 
of root food, proceeded to philosophise as follows ; 

" ' ]\Ian is born to trouble,' quoth Job, a highly sensible old patriarch, 
and it is a precious good thing for him he is, or else what a lazy, lotus-eating 
life he would lead. A farmer once called on me, saying : ' I want to hear 
of a new plant that shall take no trouble to cultivate, and give a large return.' 
I replied : ' I know exactly what you want ; it sows, weeds, reaps, thrashes, 
bags itself, — goes to market, sells itself, and puts the amount to your credit 
in the bank, — but it isn't invented yet.' Yet for that really fine old moral 
lesson my visitor was not thankful, but swore I had insulted him. Not 1 , 
forsooth : no trouble, no returns, is in the very nature of things." 

On another occasion a farmer put a question on the subject 
of pollarding. 

" The question "—thus ran P.M.O.'s answer — " is a very important 
one. Shall we pollard or not pollard ? A yes or no answer is im- 
possible. Let us try and take the matter to pieces and handle its parts 
separately. A young tree may for our purpose be considered as a cylin- 
drical structure of several layers, some actively growing, some passively 
contributing to the stability of the whole. The most rapid growth takes 
place at the tip of the cjdinder. It is there that the greater part of the 
tree's organic activity seems concentrated. Wood layers are being rapidly 
formed as fast" as the apex lengthens. Now suppose no provision beyond 
that for upward extension to exist, the act of pollarding or stumping back 
the tree would stop all further growth, and the tree would speedily perish. 

It is only the inexhaustible power of the trees to alter the main 

line of axial growth by branching out from buds, which enables them to sur- 
vive the hacking and hewing to which they are submitted. Say I order 
a young oak for planting out. It comes to me in shape of a live or six foot 
truncheon, about 2\ inches diameter, with a few projecting remnants of 
roots, haggled off with a blunt spade. The original tap root, which con- 
tinues downwards the upward growth of the stem, is gone completely. Every 
vestige of the head of foliage is gone, too, and a straight saw-cut shows you 
where the tree has been beheaded. The purveyor of oak trees will assure 
you that it is all right, that this is the recognised way of planting, that he 
is a practical man and has planted his thousands of saplings. In fact, nine 
times out of ten, the least demur on your part to accept this wretched cripple 
as the proper beginning out of which a line oak shall grow is resented as 
a personal affront. Well, you give in for the sake of peace, and plant your 
truncheon. So bountiful is tree nature that in ordinar}' cases the wounded 
root stumps will speedily put out a multitude of threadlike feeding rootlets, 
the sap will begin to ascend, and under the barbarous saw-cut where the 
head was taken off, sundry buds will appear, and little branchlets push their 
way up. The scar left bj?^ the saw begins to show a corky callus-layer all 
round its edge, and as soon as some one of the new branchlets gets ahead 
of its neighbours, this layer increases and spreads year by year further over 
the dead-wood surface of the scar. If you carefully cut away all the branch- 
lets but the one leader, the process is expedited. Ultimately the whole scar 
is covered up, perhaps in six or seven years' time, and the leader is now a 


thick, tapering substitute for the original stem which had l>een cut away. 
Only a little difference in the texture of the external bark reveals that there 
has been a surgical operation performed, and that nature has done her best 
to heal and cover up the wound. Round comes the purveyor of oaks, and 
triumphantly points to tlie new leader, now continuous with the origiiial 
stem, as a proof of the soundness of his views and the superiority of his 
practice over anybody else's science. Probably he is heard for his much 
speaking, and the impossibility of getting a new idea into his head. But 
is he right ? The dead scar is certainly closed in with living bark-layers, 
but has no mischief been done ? During the several years that the saw- 
scar has lain exposed, water has had free access to it. Countless fungus- 
spores have dropped upon it and are ultimately shut in by the encroaching 
callus-ring. Although all looks fair enough outside, these spores alternately 
grow and lie dormant, as wet and dry seasons succeed, and push their 
parasitic mycelial threads down from the dead scar-laj-er into the heartwood. 
No long time is required to make the wood thus invaded moulder and decay. 
That which should be hard timber becomes at last as friable as a biscuit, 
and the tree, guaranteed to be ' all right,' is found to be as hollow as a 
gun-barrel. Externally there is at first small token of the mischief, for 
trees live, not on their heartwood, but on an annually renewed layer of 
cambium and cortex just under the outer bark. But let there be the smallest 
injury to the exterior coat — a branch broken off, a wanton chop from the 
axe of a firewood stealer, and the fungous mycelium underneath takes on 
its second stage of growth with the next rains. Great flabby masses of 
sickly yellowish fungus-flesh grow out from the wound with a rapidity that 
is simply astonishing. The under surface of these parasites is just one mass 
of millions of spores, each one too small for sight, but every one capable 
of dropping upon a pollarded surface and carrying on the destruction upon 
which it has bred. 

" Precept is good, example is better. \\'ell, then, let us have an example. 
All the oaks in the Cape Town Avenue have been planted on this ancient 
' practical ' plan, and as a result every one of them is decayed and hollow 
at heart. They are not oak trees, but oak pollards, which is a very different 
thing. Every year, in .\pril or May, some dozen of them exhibit huge fungus 
masses of Polyporus sitlphiireiis grpwing out of their bark in fingered flakes 
like dead men's hands. Many more are too far gone for even this symptom. 
Their timber layer is utterly broken up, and its food constituents exhausted. 
Even the polyporus cannot subsist on them any longer. They live on as 
mere shells, nothing but the outside bark with a httle camliium and cortex 
being left. 

" That is what comes of pollarding. Will you go and do likewise, now: you 
are forewarned ? " 

For half a decade of years we have missed that facile pen, and 
now it has been laid aside for aye : but disseminated throughout 
numerous blue books, journals, manuscripts and leaflets are stores 
of information of great value to this budding country, and couched 
in clear and striking language. Several years ago an assortment 
of these was printed by their author in a small booklet under the 
name of Agricultural Miscellanea, and if, in these strenuous times, 
anyone can be found with sufficient leisure, opportunity, energy 
and ability to assort, revise and edit Dr. MacOwan's numerous 
opuscula, such an one will, without doubt, be doing the land a 
service. ' 

The four years which have elapsed since his retirement from the 
Public Service Dr. MacOwan spent alternately in the homes of 
his two sons-in-law. Professor Schonland, of Rhodes University 
College, Gi^ahamstown, and Mr. Chase of Uitenhage, with the lattei 
of whom he was residing at the time of his decease. 



(Plate 4.) 

Bv R. Marloth. Ph.D., M.A. 

The designation " Namib " was originally applied only to the 
desert plains situated between Walfish Bay and the grassveld 
of the interior, which begins about jolj'miles from the coast. 
Owing, however, to the great similarity of "the configuration of the 
surface o" the land and the very insignificant rainfall.* which 
in some years dwindles down to almost nothing, the country to 
the North as well as the South of Walfish Bay possesses a fauna 
and flora of the same character. And so the term has gradually 
assumed a wider meaning and now includes the whole coastbelt 
from the Cunene to the Orange River. In fact, a narrow strip 
along the coast of Little Namaqualand. from the Orange River 
as far South as the mouth of the Olifants River, also belongs to 
it : hence the term Namib is really a convenient substitute for the 
name " Western Littoral," employed by me on a previous occasion. 

The present paper is intended to deal only with that portion 
of the Namib. which is traversed by the 27th degree of latitude, 
and is consequently about 100 miles North of the Orange River. 
The width of the Namib at this part is about 50 miles, being 
bounded in the East by the escarpment of the highlands of Aus 
and Kubub. which rise more than 2,000 feet above the plains of 
the Namib and are nearly 5,000 feet above sea level. These moun- 
tains and their western slopes possess quite a different vegeta- 
tion, which, owing to the prevalence of some scrubby species of 
Mesemhrianthcmnm and the occurrence of acacias along the river 
beds, shows a great resemblance to certain parti of the Karroo, 
especially its western parts. 

The Namib, on the other hand, is a waterless desert, in which 
only a few spots are known where fresh water is obtainable, but 
the vegetation of the Namib as a whole is richer and more diversified 
than one generally thinks, the number of species as well as of typical 
plant forms being very considerable. As an illustration, it may 
be mentioned that I have observed over 20 species of Mesem- 
brianthemuin, five species of Pelargonium (mostly shrubby), two 
of Sarcocaitlon. three of Lycium, two of Zygophyllinn. two of 
Sal sol a. three of Othonna, five shrubby Leguminosae {Leheckia 
and Crotalaria), five species of Eviphorhia, and many other genera 
represented by one or two species. 

In spite of the considerable number of species there are only 
a few plant formations to be considered, for, apart from the wind, 
they depend ujwn edaphic factors only, and these do not vary 
much. Generally speaking, four formations may be distinguished, 

* Rainfall at Liideritzbucht (Angra Pequena) in the period 1904-5, 1.46 
inches ; period 1905-6, 0.82 inch. 

Rainfall at Kubub, on the highlands east of the Namib : 1904-5, 4.65 
inches; 1905-0. 1.75 inches. 


according to the nature of the ground, viz. : the seashore.'" the 
sandy ])lains, the rockv hihs and the gravel-covered flats oT the 
rising plains Ijeyond the coastbelt. ■ r j I 

The Seashore.— Ma.ny parts of the coast are rocky, and conse- 
quently do not show much difference in their vegetation from 
higher parts ; others are occu]Med by sand dunes and are then 
devoid of all vegetation, on account of the ever-shifting nature 
of the sand. Around the lagoons, however, and at other shallow 
portions of the shore a typical vegetation has established itself. 
This is naturally very siniilar to that of the coast of other coun- 
tries situated un.der similar conditions of climate. The three 
principal plants are Salicornia natalensis. Bassia diffusa and a 
coarse grass, all three so well adapted to saltwater that they do 
not suffer by being submerged at high tide. 

The sandv tracts and dunes. — A little further away from the 
sea the vegetation of the sandy tracts becomes more varied, and 
as everywhere, even 20 or more miles inland, the sand is charged 
with a considerable amount of saline constituents, the vegetation 
of the sandy plains and slopes is fairly uniform, except where under- 
ground water courses favour its development. 

The most common and most conspicuous plant is Salsola, 
a low, compact shrub, which occasionally reaches a height of three 
feet or more. Unlike its near ally, Salsola aphylla, the common 
" ganna " of the Karroo river beds, which has glaucous leaves, 
it is white-woolly and, even after rains, of grey appearance. It 
is of considerable economic importance, for it is readily eaten by 
the camels used for transport purposes and military expeditions, 
and in many parts no other fuel than this shrub is obtainal)le. 
Similar in size, but less common, is Lyciimi tetrayidrnm, which bears 
bright green leaves in spring and numerous pale blue flowers. 
Where the sand is deeper and not too readily shifted by the wind, 
two widely-spread dune-grasses form isolated groups or even 
closed patches, viz. : Eragrostis spinosa, the vogelstruis-grass of 
the Cape colonist, and Ammophila arenaria. the Marram-grass of 
the Australian coast, which, however, occurs in many other parts 
of the world. Equallv common are Statice scabra and Mesein- 
hrianthetnuni Marlothii. which, in favourable localities, e.g.. in 
valleys that gently descend towards the coast and consequently 
possess a certain amount of underground drainage, form lumps 
up to two feet in diameter and, assisted by the accumulating sand, 
one to two feet high. The Mesembriantheiniim is as common on 
the rocks as on the sand, and one may look upon it as one of the 
dominating and most specific plants of the Namib. In fact there 
are wide stretches of hilly country South of Angra Pequena which 
at first sight do not appear to possess any other vegetation. Fre- 
quent, but not quite as common, are two snow white composites, 
viz. : Dicoma tomentosa and Eremothamnus Marlothianus. which 
form lumps up to a foot in height and diameter. 

The rocky hills. — Much more varied is the vegetation of the hills, 
for many plants, which cannot thrive in the shifting sand, find 
here suitable resting places, and although the vegetation nowhere 
becomes closed, it is not rarely sufficientlv powerful to influence 


the character and the colour of the landscape. (Generally the 
plants are isolated by wide gaps between them, ten, twenty or 
more square yards being without a single specimen. This is 
])articularly the case on the granite, gneiss and quartzite, especially 
on the windward slope of the hills. On the other hand, the lime- 
stone hills offer more favourable conditions to the plants, for, 
being traversed by numerous deep cracks and fissures, they allow 
sufficient moisture to rise for sustaining the life of deeper-rooted 
plants. The m.ost conspicuous plant is a tree aloe, the well-known 
Kokerboom of Namaqualand, Aloe dichotoma. Nowhere does it 
appear in the immediate neighbourhood of the coast, but at the 
Dreizackberg, which is nearly opposite Possession Island, it comes 
M'ithin seven miles of the sea. Often occurring as a lonely and 
solitary tree, it not rarely forms groups or little groves, which 
adorn the hills, looking especially handsome in winter, when 
they bear large racemes of bright yellow flowers. The tree is a 
conspicuous feature of Great as well as of Little Namaqualand, 
and in the interior, where the rainfall is less scanty and the wind 
much less destructive and exhaustive than near the coast, it 
reaches considerable dimensions, being sometimes three feet or 
more in diameter at the base, and possessing a crown 40-50 feet 
wide. Aloe dichotoma and Euphorbia Dinteri may be looked 
upon as the most characteristic plants of Namaqualand. hut the 
latter does not go into the Namib, nor far into Little Namaqualand, 
being evidently confined to the region of the summer rains and the 
warmer tracts of the country. I have not seen any other species 
of aloe or its allied genera in the Namib, but further inland, e.g., 
on the highlands of Kubub or along the Fish River, several others 
occur, although thej^ are only small and acaulescent species. 

Le s conspicuous when seen from a distance, but iar more 
numerous than Aloe dichotoma, are several species of Euphorbia, 
which often dominate entire districts. In the coast belt one 
species only is common, viz. : E. brachiafa, a dichotomously branched 
leafless, rigid, shrublet one to two feet high. A little further 
inland,, from the Dreizackberg eastwards, as far as Garub at the 
eastern edge of the Namib. a larger species, viz. : E. gummifera, 
3-6 feet h:gh, forms compact circular bushes, branched from the 
g ound, the greyish twigs possessing a nauseous scent and a more 
than usuall}/ ample supply of milk juice. For miles the landscape 
is of en dominated by this species, especially on the hills of 
limestone, which abound in this region. Here and there, e.g., 
near Tschaukaib, another species takes the place of the former 
or grows intermingled with it, viz. : E. lignosa, also a compact, 
but smaller shrub, with very woody, pointed branches, greyish 
like the former. E. cervicornis, the olifants-melkbos of Little 
Namaqualand, occurs occasionally. Two smaller species are 
also fairly common. One, E. namiboisis, has a short club-shaped 
stem, bearing a few short and stout branches. It is occasionally 
4-8 inches high, but often the stem hardly protrudes from the 
ground. The other species is /:. stapcliiformis. which, as the 
name indicates, j^ossesses short succulent stems, that hardly rise 
above the ground. 


Fairly common is Pteronia succitlenta, a dwarf shrublet with 
mostly small, almost terete 1-^aves, that are usually only 3-5 mm. 
long. . on luxuriant specimens only reaching" double the size. 
Evidently the leaves, although persistent even in summer, are 
well adapted to the extremes of the climate, for the fury of the 
sand-laden wind has often forced the plant to crouch on the 
ground or to seek shelter behind projecting rocks, isolated boulders 
or even pebbles. Nowhere, not even on the stormy coasts of 
the Cape of Good Hope, can the trimming effect of the wind be 
seen to such an extent as here. Shrublets of Pteronia or Salsola 
are not rarely trained into a narrow, sharp-edged wedge, ten 
times as long as broad and closely pressed to the ground, the 
mainstem being bent over at a right angle, immediately above 
the projecting stone or pebble, behind which the plant had been 
enabled to start its life. Where the shelter, however small it 
might have been, has gone, the stem of the harder wooded plants, 
as far as it projects above the ground, has been carved into a narrow 
wedge with polished lateral faces, the sap evidently rising and 
descending in the narrow strip of unexposed wood and bark 
situated at the back. 

A leafless umbellifer. the widely spread Pitnranthiis aphyllns, 
which, in the Karroo and other dry regions of South Africa, forms 
upright bushes two to three feet high, has here assumed a crouching 
habit, the stems growing almost horizontally in the direction 
of the wind, viz. : south to north, retaining their upright growth, 
only in sheltered places. 

Among the numerous species of Mesembriantheiniim occurring 
in this region, are several of peculiar biological interest. One 
of the most common kinds is M. fimhriatitm, of the section 
Sphaeroidea, which forms little, rounded, grey lumps, attached 
to the rocks, each branch! et being terminated by a corpusculum, 
that is hidden among the remains of previous generations. 
Another species of the same section is M. opticiim, one of the few 
window-plants, described by me in another paper.* The plants 
are nearly embedded in the ground, the apical part of the cor- 
pusculum only being exposed to the air ; here no green tissue 
exists, the end being transparent, thus allowing the light to enter 
the body of the leaf and to illuminate the lateral green parts from 

Belonging to another section, but possessing even more highly 
specialised window-leaves, is M. rhopalophylliun, which is fairly 
common in the coast belt from Angra Pequena to Pomona. The 
plant is stemless and produces a large number of sessile, club- 
shaped, erect leaves, about one inch long. The apex of the leaves 
is convex, colourless and transparent like a lens, hence, as the 
plant grows embedded in sandy or gravelly soil, nothing is seen 
except these transparent spots, which peep out of the ground like 
eyes. In spring the flowers appear, protruding about half an 
inch above the ground, often the only indication of the existence 
of the plant, as even the eyes may be covered with sand. 

* Trans. Roy. Soc. S.A., 1909. 


One of the few larger species of the region is M. inonilijorme, 
which reaches a height of two to three feet, and is mostly confined 
to the sandy plains. In spring young shoots with the usual form 
of sessile decussate, succulent leaves appear, but they soon shrivel 
up, while their basis swells, forming a series of swollen joints, 
which the name of the plant well describes. Similar in its 
appearance to some species of Mesembrianthemiim is the widely 
spread Augea capensis, w'ell known in some parts of the Karroo. 
The leaves are so gorged with sap that each forms a cylindrical body 
about an inch long, rounded off at both ends, but the juice here is 
so saline, that not even a camel can eat the plant, although these 
animals find the Salsola quite palatable. 

A conspicuous feature of this formation is the occurrence of 
some GeraniaceaC; of which three are particularly common, viz. : 
Pelargonium crassicaule, P. cortusifolium and Sarcocaulon Burmanni, 
all three being clumsy shrublets with short and stout l)ranches 
which remain leafless for at least nine months of the year, viz. : 
from October to June. P. crassicaule is hardly ever more than 
10 inches high and 10-15 inches in diameter, the branches being 
as thick as one's thumb and quite smooth, and as they are nearly 
black, the plant forms a conspicuous object on the bare rocks 
during the greater part of the year. P. c or tii si folium is often 
considerably larger, reaching two feet in height and diameter 
and forming a very ornamental object when in full leaf and 

The Sarcocaulon differs from the pelargonia by possessing spines, 
often one to two inches long, the specially modified pedicels of 
former leaves. The plant produces two sets of leaves ; one kind, 
sessile and tufted, appears every year early in spring on stem 
and branches, the others, with long pedicels, are produced a little 
later, on the growing points of the branches, provided that the 
season has been favourable enough to induce further growth of 
the plant. When the pedicels have become sufficiently stout 
and long,- the blades drop, and the remaining, sharp-pointed spines 
harden, their development showing that they are not merely 
the remains of the leaves, but organs of special adaptation and 
protection, the plant having devoted a considerable amount of 
building material to their construction. In spring these Sar- 
cocaulon plants, covered with bright green leaves, are quite a treat 
to the eye, especially where they are numerous enough to influence 
the colour of the landscape. Later on, in September or October, 
the flowers appear and are often so numerous, that every plant 
looks like a rose coloured patch on the otherwise bare ground.* 

Similar to the shrubby pelargonia are two or three species of 
Othonna, among them 0. cacalioides, which in summer shows 
only the bare carnose stems, but becomes covered with bright 
leaves in spring. The alhagi-type of the North- African deserts is 
represented by Parkinsonia africana, and several species of Leheckia, 
among them L. multi flora, the latter producing white silvery 
leaves in winter, but remaining almost bare in summer. 

* The plant differs from the typical S. Burmanni by having pink flowers. 

S.A. Assn. for Adv. of Science. 

1909. Pl. 4. 




L ra\elly plain with Sarcocniiloii Eiiniinimi, DC 

Sandy valley " Karlstal" with S<iIso!(i ZcyJnri, Moq. 

R. Marloth.— Vegetation of Southern Namib. 


One of the most regularly appearing shrubs of the rocky parts 
of the Namib is Ectadiiim virgatum, which bears very leathery, 
lanceolate leaves and scented yellow flowers, haunted at night 
time by various moths. 

Incidentally I may mention that animal life is not as scarce 
in these desert regions as one generally thinks. Hares and ante- 
lopes, especially the little steinbok and the gemsbok are not un- 
common, jackals abound, hyaenas are met with, and on the inland 
plains one may see troops of springbok and ostriches. Flowers 
are visited by various butterflies, among them the handsome 
Pyramis cardui, and small moths are very numerous, but a few 
larger ones are also fairly frequent and easily caught at night 
time near the camp fire. 

Of small succulents observed by me I may mention Crassula 
lycopodioides and C. deltoidea, and as a special type two stapelioid 
plants, viz. : the small and smooth Trichocanlon cacti for me, and a 
large Hoodia, which is pe haps H. Gordonii. both occurring near 
the coast as well as further inland, e.g., on ttte Kovies and 
Tschaukaib mountains. 

The gravel plains. — After crossing the rocky coast-strip and the 
sand dunes East of Angra Pequena, one reaches the rising plains 
of the inner Namib, which, at a distance of 40 miles from the coast, 
attain an altitude of nearly 1,800 feet. These plains are swept 
by southerly gales laden with sand, and hence, in this respect, 
resemble the coastlands, but being visited by sea fogs either rarely 
or not at all, they are more barren, for the fogs of the sea supply 
a considerable amount of moisture to the plants of the coastbelt. 
Some of the plants are capable of absorbing moisture bj^ aerial 
organs ; such are Salsola zeyheri, Mesembriantkemum funbriatimi 
and M. Marlothii, but most others utilise only what has soaked into 
the ground. The quantity of such water is quite considerable, for 
the fogs are so heavy that the sand is often moistened to a ciepth 
of an inch or two, while at the basis of virgate shrubs, like Ectadiinn 
or Leheckia, sufficient water flows down along the stem in a single 
night to moisten the ground to a depth of six inches. On the 
more remote plains, however, this source of moisture is practically 
absent, hence they are more barren than any other part of the 
country and any other part of South Africa, the moving sand dunes 
perhaps excepted. Often one may search in vain for any trace of 
organic life, not even a lichen being visible on the stones nor a 
fly humming about in the air. For miles and miles tliere is no- 
thing but sand and gravel, the detritus of crumbling rocks, which 
still project here and there from the accumulating material, that 
is graduafly burying them. Yet occasionally even such tracts 
have been invaded by a specially adapted and wonderfully hardy 
plant, viz. : Sarcocaidon Biirmanni. Its bark consists of numer- 
ous layers of thin-walled, corky tissue, which is highly impreg- 
nated with a mixture of wax, fat and resin, thus forming an abso- 
lutely, impervious covering of stem and branches. This hard 
and horny casing enables the plant to brave the fiercest sun and 
the terrible standstorms of the gravel-covered desert, hence it 
thrives even in these parts of the Namib, where no other plant 


can subsist. The colonists call it candlebush* or Bushman's 
candle, for even v/hen fresh from the ground it will burn like a 
torch, forming a welcome fuel for the traveller in the desert, where 
even the Sal sol a may be absent. 

Some special conditions are brought about by the courses of 
the few rivers, which, descending from the high plateaus to the 
East of the Namib, conduct the rainwater to the coast, never as 
actual rivers, but merely as underground soakage, which finally 
produces the few springs and wells of fresh water that exist near 
the coast, e.g., at Elizabeth Bay, Anichab. Hottentots Bay and 
a few other places. In these so-called river beds a few camel-thorn 
trees come within the limits of the Namib, several grasses thrive 
occasionally even in profusion, and one of the most curious plants 
of the Namib, the Naras, finds a few favourable localities for thriv- 
ing and ripening its fruits, which form a favourite food of the 
roaming Hottentots and Bushmen. The Naras, Acanthosicyos 
horrida, a shrubby, but leafless, member of the order Cucurbitaceae, 
was until recently unknown south of Walfish Bay, where it 
occupies the sand dunes near the old bed of the Kuisib River. 
Lately, however, it has been discovered at several other spots of 
the Namib, viz. : near Anichab,t about 24 miles North of Angra 
Pequena, near Harris, { about 20 miles to the North-East of it, 
in the dunes of the Tiras plains, about 20 miles North of the Tiger 
Mountain, situated near the station Garub, and, according to 
verbal information from Mr. G. Klinghardt. still further South 
near a well, called Amitsib, about 60 miles to the South-East of 
Angra Pequena, midway between the coast and the farm Witputs. 
In all these localities the existence of the plant indicates under- 
ground moisture, which descends in deep channels from the high- 
lands of the interior and rises sufficiently in the sand to be reached 
by the unusually long roots of this plant, which have been traced 
to 10 meters and more. 

The other specially remarkable plant of the Northern Namib, 
which occurs there in close proximity to the Naras, viz. : the Wel- 
witschia, has not been found South of the Kuisib district as yet 
although I do not think it unlikely that it may occur in some 
other parts of the Namib. 

List of species mentioned in this paper, being the more common and representative 
plants of the region. 
Graminace^e. Aizoace.e. 

Ammophila arenaria Link. Mesembnanthemum einereum, Mar- 

Lragrostis Sptnosa, inn. ]c>th 

LiLiACE^. ^j_ fimbriatum, Sonder 

Aloe dichotoma, L.f. j^j Mavlothii, Pax. 

Chenopodiace^. M. moniUfortne, Haw. 

Bassia diffusa [CJienolea], Thunb. AI. opticuni, Marloth. 

Salicomia natalensis, Bunge M. rhopalophyllum, Schlechter et 

Salsola Zeyheri \Moq.^, B. et H. Diels. 

* Three species ot Sarcocaulon Dear this name, but only one ot these occurs 
here, the others being found further south and west. 

■j- Schultze : " Aus Namaland und Kalahari," Jena, 1908. 

t Range: "Reisestudien in Gross-Namaland." Zeitschr. Ges. liir Erdkunde, 
Berlin, 1908, p. 677. 




Crassula deltoidea. L.f. 
C. lycopodioides, L. 


Lebeckia mnltiflora, E. Mey. 
Parkinsonia africana. Sond. 


Pelargonium coytusifoliitm, L'Herit. 
P. crasssicaiile, L'Herit. 
Sarcocauloii Biirinaniii, DC. 

A itgca capensis, Thunb. 


Euphorbia brackiata, E. Mey. 

E. cervicornis, Boiss. 

E. Dinteri, Berger. 

E. giimmifera, Boiss. 

E. lignosa, Marloth. 

E. namibensis, Marloth. 

E. stapelioides. Boiss. 

Pititi'diit/itfs apliyllus DC. {Dcvcrra^. 


Statice scahva, Thunb. 

Ectadiiiiu virgattnn, E. Mey. 


Hoodia Gordonii, Sweet. 
Trichocaulon cactiforme, N. E. Br. 


Lyciuui ii'ti'iiiulniui, Thunb. 


Acaiithosicyos horrida, Welw. 


Dicoina tomentosa, (.'ass. 
Eremothamnus Marlothianus, Hoftm. 
Othonna cacalioides, L.f. 
Plei'iiytia succidcnta. Thunl). 


An International Congress of Radiology and Electricity is being 
arranged for. It is proposed to hold this congress at Brussels on 
the 6th, 7th and 8th of September next. It will comprise three 
sections dealing with the following subjects : — Section I. : Ter- 
minology and methods of measurement in radio-activity ; subjects 
connected with ions, electrons and corpuscles. Section II. : 
Fundamental theories of electricity, study of radiations (including 
spectroscopy, chemical effects of radiations and other allied ques- 
tions), radio-activity, atomic theory, cosmical phenomena (including 
atmospheric electricity and atmospheric radio-activity). Section 
III. : The effects of radiations on living organisms. 

COLOURING OF POISONS.— i\t a meeting of the (^ape 
Chemical Society held on the 15th October it was resolved, upon 
the motion of Prof, van der Riet, to write to the Government 
expressing the view of the Society that steps should be taken to 
r(^strict the sale of uncoloured arsenical preparations to the public. 
The Medical Council of the Cape Colony, at its meeting on the 
7th December, decided, at the instance of Dr. Darley-Hartley, 
to recommend to the Government that arsenic and strychnine 
supplied for farming purposes should be coloured. 


By J. M. P. MuiRHEAD, F.R.S.L., F.S.S., F.R.S.E. 

We have all heard of the Yellow Peril, and even so prominent 
and versatile a personage as the Kaiser has expressed his fear of 
it ; but in South Africa, it is the generally believed rapid growth 
of the non-white population that inspires apprehension, and many 
people are quite convinced that South Africa in time is bound to be 
so overrun by the coloured races that the white population will 
practically be swamped at no far distant date. 

In the latter part of my paper read before this Society in Kim- 
berley in igo6 I endeavoured to dissipate this bogey, but as usually 
happens the voice of the investigator (unlike the voice of the turtle) 
is not heard in the land, and the bogey still looms large in the public 
mind. Unfortunately, he is not even a harmless sort of scarecrow, 
because he is to a certain extent responsible for a hatred of the 
native races, born of fear. 

Now it is very difficult — in fact almost impossible — to get really 
reliable figures, and no local statistician will be quite happy until 
there is a really competent General Statisticial Bureau for South 
Africa, which will deal carefully arid fully with all its complex 
figures, whereof not the least difficult are those concerning its popu- 
lation. I commend this suggestion with all respect to the First 
Union Parliament. One has therefore meanwhile to deal with 
estimates in many cases, and it is, I believe, largely owing to the 
inaccuracy of these estimates that the imaginary Black Danger 
has arisen. I will deal with each Colony separately, and must take 
the oldest first as it has certain supposed accurate census figures 
to go on, which have to be partly made use of in arriving at the 
accuracy of the " Estimates " generally. 

The non-European population of the Cape Colony for the years 
below mentioned was as follows : — 

1891. (Census figures) 1,150,237. 
1904. (Census figures) 1,548,560 (for the same area). 
1907. Government Statistician's estimate, 1,896,820 (in- 
cludes annexed territories). 
1907 is in every case the last year available. 

The Cape Coloured population in 13 years (Census figures) 
apparently increased in the same area at the rate of 30,640 per 
annum : the increase for the last 3 years is apparently nearly 
350,000, or almost as much as for the previous 13 5''ears, but the 
explanation of this apparent discrepancy is the annexation of 
territories containing a very large native population. For the pur- 
pose of comparison, it is obvious that the same area only can be 


considered, continuing the previous 13 years rate of increase of 
30.640 per annum the population in 1907 would be 1,640.480 leaving 
about 257.000 as increase by annexation. That is. provided the 
Census figures are correct, but in my paper of iqo6 T quoted with 
great misgivings the figures for the years 1900, 1901 and 1902 from 
the Cape Statistical Register, showing an average excess of births 
over deaths (i.e.. an increase of population) among the Coloured 
population of only 2,250 per annum, and yet the Census figures 
referred to give 30,640 per annum. The difference is ridiculous, 
and I may at once state that I am now convinced that the Census 
of 1891 was hopelessly out in its count of the non-white races, 
probably by no less than quarter of a million. Equally inaccurate 
must have been the record of births and deaths for 1900, 1901 and 
1902 as the excess is apparently only about 25% of the real figures. 
In 1907 the Coloured births were 41,110 and the deaths 29,219, 
the increase being 11,891, which I believe to be the correct figure, 
more especially as it coincides with the figures for the 34 principal 
towns in 1904 which I quoted in my i^revious ])aper, viz. : an 
increase of about ()'8 per thousand. 

In Natal the increase is about 13 per thousand, or almost double 
that of the Caj^c. I will therefore use the higher figure (i.e.; the 
Natal) so as to be quite fair in estimating the O.R.C. and Transvaal 

Taking the Cape Census figures for 1904 as accurate, and the 
rate of increase, say, 7 per thousand, the population for 1899 would 
be 1,292,410, and for 1907, 1,581,068, or to allow for the increased 
annual ratio, say, 1,600,000, leaving nearly 300,000 as increase by 
annexation, the increase for the same area for the eight years thus 
being 105,590. 

In 1899 Whittaker's Almanac estimated the Coloured i)opulation 
of the Orange Free State at 125,000, in 1907 the figures for that 
Colony were 241,626 — an increase in 8 years of 116,626 ; a perfectly 
absurd figure. It takes a prolific country about 40 years to double 
its population, and while the fertility of the Orange River Colony 
is well known, to double its native population in 8 years is just a 
bit too rapid for human imagination : the estimate rs undoubtedly 
quite inaccurate : applying the same proportion of increase as in 
Natal the estimate for 1899 should be roughly 215,000, giving the 
increase for the 8 years as 26,626. 

In 1899 Whittaker's Almanac estimated the Coloured iio]>ulation 
of the Transvaal as 750,000. The figures for 1907 were 972.674. 
In this case 50.000 has to be added to the 1908 figures to get the 
same area, as between 1899 and 1907 Natal absorbed Transvaal 
territory containing (History of the War — last volume) 50,000 
natives, this means the total increase on the estimate in 8 years of 
272,674. Again applying the Natal rate of increase, the estimate 
fof 1899 should be 940,000, or an increase in 8 years of 112.674. 

In Natal (at last, and, fortunately, we can deal with actual 
figures) the native population in 1900 \\as 865,019, in 1907 1.011,645. 
From this latter figure must be deducted 50,000, the number of 
natives taken from the Transvaal, making a net increase in 7 years 
of 96,626, or at the same rate 110.436 for the 8 years under review. 


The tota^ increase of Coloured j^oi^ulation for the 8 years — 1899- 
1907— would therefore appear to be : — 

Cape Colony 105,590. Based on actual increas" in 1907. 

Transvaal 112.674. Based on i3°/oo P^^' ^-^'^- increase. 

Natal 110,436. Practically actual figures. 

O.R.C. 26.626. Based on is"/^,- annual increase. 


Turning to the white population on the Census figures, it was 
in 1891, 376,987 in the Cape Colony, in 1904 it was 569,973. an 
increase of 192.986, or 14.845 per annum ; in 1899 on this basis it 
would be 495.748. The Government Statistician estimates the 
population in 1907 at 610,680, a figure which I am quite prepared 
to accept, though but for emigration, to which I will refer later, it 
would have been considerably larger. The excess of white births 
over deaths in 1907 was 13,123, or 1,722 less than the average in- 
crease of the white population, including immigration, for the 13 
years ended December 31st, 1904. The European death rate was 
10-28 per thousand, which seems only to be beaten by New Zealand 
with 9-87. but the excess, i.e.. of births over deaths, is 21-50, as com- 
pared to the Cape Coloured excess of 6*8 and the Natal native 
excess of 13. Compared with European countries this is very high, 
Germany, the highest in Europe, being i4-4i and Great Britain 
11-95, which speaks well for the salubriety of the S. African climate. 
The increase of white population in the Cape Colony for the 8 years 
under review was 114,932 : probably till 1904 it gained largely 
from immigration, at any rate from. 1899 to 1903 it must have thus 
benefitted very considerably. In 1902, 50,206 people left England 
for South Africa, of whom the Cape would get its share ; in 1907 
only 16,820 so left. In 1907, however, 29,767 people arrived at 
Cape Ports, 39,550 left ; a loss of white population in one year of 
9,783 ; but even in 1907 I fancy the Transvaal and O.R.C. were still 
benefiting from immigration. Natal in that particular year was 
probably stationary, but during that year the Cape suffered enor- 
mously and has suffered ever since, indeed since 1905 I estimate 
that the Cape has lost 30,000 white people by emigration. 

In Natal the actual increase of white population from 1900 to 
1907 was 32,158. At the same ratio for the 8 years it would be 
36,752. Natal must therefore have benefited from immigration 
during the 8 years by about 20,000 people. 

The O.R.C. and Transvaal are very difficult to gauge, Whittaker's 
Almanac gives the white population in 1899 as 78,000 and 250,000 
respectively, both quite wrong, I should fancy, the population in 
1907 was 143,419 and 297.277, or an increase of 65,419 in the 
Orange River Colony, and only 47,277 in the Transvaal, which is 
ridiculous. In the absence of reliable data, however, I am not going 
to guess at what it really was. We have fairly definite figures for 
the Colonies most affected by the " Black Danger," viz. : Natal 
and the Cape Colony, and they show : — 



Cape Colony 







151.684 216,026 

The Orange River Colony and the Transvaal would probably more 
than adjust the difference, if accurate figures were available ; but 
there is obviously no cause for alarm. Still I am compelled again 
to point out that it is the high Coloured death rate that really 
keeps the balance ; true, the Cape white birth rate is very good, and, 
with an increasing white population, will increase the Cape's pro- 
portion of white to black daily, but I must mention that of Coloured 
children born in the 34 largest towns of the Cape Colony — and they 
constitute 25% of the whole — over 50% die before they are 5 years 
old, the fact that the Natal Coloured excess of births over deaths 
is nearly double the Cape's I am afraid clearly points out that Town 
life does not suit the native, to put it very mildly. 

The white population of South Africa {i.e.; the four colonies) 
to-day is probably 1,250,000 and the Coloured population 4.300,000. 
In igo6 I, foolishly, perhaps, ventured to prophesy that in the year 
2006 the white and Coloured populations would be equal : time only 
will prove the result, but, with a Union of our States, restored 
confidence in the great future of this fair land of ours, the great 
flood of immigration it must bring, the healthy lives of our people 
with their high birth rate and low death rate, and, alas, I must say 
alas, the growing tendency of the natives from many causes quite 
outside the scope of this paper, to flock to the towns and there lower 
their vitality, I am inclined to repeat my prophecy, at any rate I 
am quite convinced there is no " Black Danger." 


Samples of this ore, from Jachtlust, were forwarded to the Imperial 
Institute by the Government of the Transvaal towards the close 
of igo8. The material consisted chiefly of chromite. with some 
impurity in the form of pyroxene and felspar. Portions of the 
samples which contained only a small amount of impurity, partly 
pyroxene and partly felspar, had a specific gravity of about 4*35. 
A lump containing a considerable amount of impurity, nearly all 
pyroxene, had a specific gravity of about 4'io. The two qualities 
of ore were separately analysed, and gave the following results 
(Imperial Institute Bulletin, Vol. VII., No. 3, 1909) : — 

ist quality- -nd t|iiality. 

Per cent. Per cent. 

Chromium sesquioxide Cr.Oj 47'<' 3'^'4 

Ferrous oxide FeO -3'99 -i'5 

The first quality ore was pronounced a marketable product 
having an English value of about £3 5s.' per ton, c.i.f. (March, 
1909). The second quality ore, though saleable, would have a 
value of only about £2 los. per ton, c.i.f., that is, the current rate 
for an ore containing 40 per cent, of chromium sesquioxide. 


By T. E. Scaife, A.MT.C.E. 


Upon the Coastal Plateau of the Cape Colony south of the Lange- 
berg range of mountains there is only one area where the true 
Karroo conditions of climate and soil are found. In the centre 
of this area is situated the village of Roberston, where the first 
South African Irrigation Congress was held in May last. This 
Congress was initiated by the Breede River Irrigation Board, and 
all the gentlemen attending the Congress were their guests. Speak- 
ing at the oj)ening of the Congress, Mr. Merriman said : — 

" I can never forget that Robertson was the first place to give a real start 
to co-operative irrigation in the Countrv. It was ten years ago. I think, 
since I last had the ])leasure of addressing a Robertson audience upon the 
subject, when there was some doubt as to whether one could carry out a 
Co-operative Scheme. I always had an affection for Robertson, because it 
was the first place to put into effect an Act of mine, which had been practicalh' 
a dead letter for twenty years on the Statute Book. I think that it is fitting, 
indeed, that Robertson sliould be the first place to hold what I hope will be 
an annual function — a Congress on Irrigation of the whole country. We 
should be very thankful to Robertson for going to the trouble of arranging 
for the Congress to be held here, and for the hospitality extended to the 

It is intended in this paper briefly to outline the history of that 
Board and its irrigation scheme in the Breede River Valley. 

Irrig.-vtiox IX THE Breede V.\i.ley. 

It is close upon ten years since the construction of these irrigation 
works under the jurisdiction of the Irrigation Board were commenced. 
At that time little use had been made of the waters in the Breede 
River for irrigation purposes. The ordinary summer flow of the 
many side streams issuing from the kloofs on the Langeberg Range 
on one side of the valley, and the Zonder Einde Range on the other 
side, had been fully utilised. Lands situated nearest to the moun- 
tain slopes received an ample supply of water for irrigation purposes, 
while the best Karroo lands situated along the river banks were dry 
and could not be cultivated, although throughout most of the yea.v 
the Breede River, flowing close to them, contained a fair volume 
of water. Levels had been taken at various times, and these had 
proved that only by a large canal and co-operation amongst the 
landowners could any advance by means of irrigation be made. 

The Irrigation Works are situated in the centre of the only strip 
of Karroo soil to be found on the Co.^stal Plateau. This strip of 
Karroo soil in the Breede River Valley is about 50 miles long, having 
a varying width of 5 to 10 miles. The Karroo conditions are first 
evident near Worcester. They extend down the valley to Nuy, 
Robertson and Ashton, soon afterwards becoming merged into the 
sour veld before Swellendam is reached. The conditions in the 
Breede Valley are favourable for irrigation purj)oses because of its 
geographical position, it being a strip of Karroo soil adjoining the 


sour vekL which forms the catchment of the Breede River. Within 
the sour veld areas there is a heavy rainfall of over 30 inches per 
annum, whereas on the strip of Karroo the average rainfall does not 
exceed on the average more than 12 inches per annum. This low 
rainfall is the main cause of the formation of the Karroo soils in 
the Breede Valley, for the rains have not, through countless ages, 
washed out the plant food from the soils, as we find both higher up 
and lower down the valley, in those areas known as the sour veld. 
Naturally the geological features prevailing in the valley have 
largely contributed to its fertility; but its sheltered position, formed 
by the mountain ranges which exclude the heavy rains of the coastal 
belt, have allowed irrigation to be of so much value to the districts. 
It is now over five years since the works were completed, and it is 
not often that an engineer has the opportunity of seeing a scheme 
upon which he has toiled become of so much benefit to a community 
and to a Colony in general. In March, 1904 the late Director of 
Irrigation, Mr. ^^'. B. Gordon, said, when reporting upon the scheme 
after his first visit to the Breede Valley : — 

" The works generally have been well and economically designed and 
constructed, and I venture to predict that before many years have passed 
the Public Works Department, the Board, and everyone who has fostered 
or taken an interest in this scheme will be gratified at the results. Accidents 
may occur and unforseen difficulties may arise. These are almost inevitable 
in the case of a canal constructed on a diflicult alignment and crossing numer- 
ous mountain torrents ; but 1 have no doubt as to the future of the work 
and its ultimate success." 

A forecast which the last few years have fully justified. 

The Breede River Irrigation Works. 

This being a pioneer scheme, many difficulties presented them- 
selves in the early s ages which are non-existent to-day, for the 
problems have been solved : while it has been shown how an engineer 
can, by co-operation with an Irrigation Board, bring schemes like 
the Robertson Canal and Weir, to an entire and successful comple- 
tion. I look back upon the four years spent with the Irrigation 
Board as four years of strenuous pleasure, and no small credit is 
due to the Working Committee who took such a prominent part in 
the construction of the works. Arrangements were made in the 
early stages of construction for the Committee to visit the works 
every Thursday, when I accompanied them, and any point was 
discussed and settled on the spot. This Committee formed as it were 
a buffer state between the engineer and the shareholders, allowing 
the engineer to devote all his attention to the work free from outside 

The Weir Across the Breede River. 

The construction of the weir was not an easy or simple matter. 
The getting in of the foundation of the cement concrete core in- 
volved a considerable amount of excavating below the water level. 
During the first season the foundations were put in right across the 
ri\^er before the winter floods arrived, then the work there was sus- 
pended until the next season. The stones used in the construction 
of the weir had to be conveyed a distance of two miles by means of 


tramway and trollies. Speaking about the weir across the Breede 
River at the head of the canal, Mr. Gordon said in his report : — 

" The design is certainly a remarkably cheap one ; but so far the work has 
acted efficiently and I see no reason why it should not continue to do so, if it is 
carefully watched and promptly re])aired shf)uld the necessity arise." 

The Board decided that the scheme should be carried out without 
the aid of a contractor, and they were at all times willing to ])rovide 
what plant was required for carrying along the work with economy 
— including 3I miles of tramway, 18" gauge. 

The Irrigation Canal. 

The canal crosses at right angles and along the foot of the drainage 
area, an intricate piece of country along which to carry the water, 
situated at the foot of the slopes of the Langeberg range of moun- 
tains. This route was described by Sir Wm. Wilcox when he 
visited the Breede Valley as a " difficult alignment "; and the drain- 
age crossings to pass the flood waters flowing off the mountain 
slopes proved to be difficult and costly. During the construction 
of the canal, in February, 1902, there was a heavy rainfall in the 
mountain, and damage was caused to the new canal works to the 
extent of £2,000 before the works in an incomplete state had 
adapted themselves to the altered conditions. This was a severe 
blow to the Board, and at the time, and for some months afterwards, 
all hands were engaged repairing the damage. In April, 1904, the 
works were entirely finished, and the canal has been available for 
irrigation purposes ever since, with only one break ; that was when 
a severe flood completely washed away the aqueduct at the Hoops 
River. The river bed there had originally been 15 feet wide, after 
the flood it was scoi^red to a Mddth of 60 feet ; therefore it was 
decided to cross this river by means of a siphon in place of an 
aqueduct. This siphon is now in working order and gives entire 

Distribution of Water. 

Some method had to be devised for an equitable distributicMi of 
the water in the canal amongst the various shareholders, each 
holding a different area of irrigable land. In the first instance the 
canal was divided into two sections for the division of the water, 
the upper half of the shareholders taking the whole of the water one 
week, and the lower half the following week. This division proved 
unwieldy and wasteful ; for the streams were too strong to be 
handled economically upon the farms. 

The present division is made by twelve continuous streams being 
taken from the canal at various points along its length of 2i| miles. 
The canal is divided into twelve sections, and iff each section only 
one sluice is to be opened at one time. In each of the twelve 
sections all the sluices are of one size ; but the sizes of the sluices 
increase in dimensions in each section as one proceeds down the 
canal, so as to pass a like volume of water under a diminished 
head. The shareholders in each section form a Committee who 
control and divide their one-twelfth of the water forming their 

S.A. Assn. for Adv. of Science. 

1909. PL. 6. 

Breede River Irrigation Works, Robertson. 


The credit for the division of the water under present arrange- 
ments is due entirely to the Board, from whom the suggestion 
emanated. I assisted them by recommendations as to how the 
division of the water in the canal was to be made, the size of the 
various sluices, and the means of measuring the water by passing 
it over weirs. This division has solved what appeared at one time 
to be a difftcult problem. The completion of the Breede River 
s heme has given an impetus to irrigation in the Breede Valley. 
There are at present four Irrigation Boards in the surrounding 
areas and three others in the various stages of formation. 

Cost of Scheme. 

By means of this canal 2,500 morgen of Karroo soil have been 
placed under irrigation at a cost of £33,000. A loan was obtained 
from the Government for that amount, and the annual charge upon 
the land for the redemption of the loan in 40 years is i8s. lod. per 
morgen. This sum includes the maintenance and administration 
charges. Ten years ago this land was valued at £2 per morgen. 
Since it has been placed under irrigation sales have been transacted 
at^£50 and at prices up to £100 per morgen. It is doubtful if any 
land can be purchased at the former figure to-daj-. At £50 per 
morgen the increased value of the j^roperty has been enhanced by 
the sum of £120.000. 

Advantages of Works. 

Now this irrigation scheme has many advantages in its favour, 
as follows : — 

([) The irrigable lands are situated in close proximity to the New Cape 
Central Railway. No property is more than three miles from a Siding. 

(2) There is a plentiful supply of water for a period of nine months eacli year. 
The dry months are January, February and March. 

(3) Each shareholder had an established farm in the District : therefore 
he could afford to pay the water rates in the early stages of develojiment, 
having sufficient capital to break up, level, fence and prepare the new lands 
for cultivation. 

Viticulture and Ostrich Farming. 

Ten years ago the Robertson district was essentially a wine and 
brandy-producing area. It is doubtful if any one foresaw when 
this scheme was started how viticulture would in a few years be 
doomed, first by the attacks of the Phylloxera and later by the 
depression in the markets. The farmers were quick to perceive 
the altered contitions and sowed almost all the new lands with that 
valuable fodder plant lucerne — followed of course by the ostrich. 

To-day many of the shareholders are taking out their vines, and 
are sowing the ground with lucerne, which grows admirably upon 
the irrigable lands. It is stated that one morgen of lucerne will 
carry six birds throughout the year. This represents an average 
return of about £30 per morgen per annum, assuming that each 
bird will produce feathers to the value of £5 each year. 

Brack Soils. 

The irrigation schemes in the Breede River Valley are not without 
the usual attendant of brack lands. The worst effects are found 
in the low lying portions of the valley, where the subsoil springs 


from the higher lands come to the sm-face. In the majority of cases 
artificial drains have been formed to carry off the surplus water 
where the ground has become water-logged. The most successful 
drainage of brack land is upon the farm Wonderfontein, where tile 
drains have been laid about six feet below the surface, intercepting 
the subsoil water which is carried off to be used again for irrigation 
purposes upon lands at a lower level. In one season this ground 
upon which nothing would grow, recovered, and now the land will 
produce any of the crops grown in the district. There is another 
farm where the owner sold the property because of the brack 
appearing. The purchaser has extensively drained the lands by 
deep drainage cuts, and there is every indication that in one or two 
seasons the ground will recover its normal condition. It has been 
stated that " Time is the most efficient agent in the reclamation 
of salted land." This important question of drainage in conjunction 
with irrigation is now much better understood amongst the farming 
community. The old ideas that the surplus water will find an 
outlet for itself without any artificial aid is being rapidly dispelled. 
The dissemination of knowledge upon the precolation of water, 
the dangers of over-irrigation, and upon brack soils in general, is 
having far-reaching results in the recovery and cultivation of salted 

Dr. Juritz. in his valuable paper, read before the Irrigation 
Congress in 'SIs.y last ; entitled " Brack Soils : Their Cause, Culti- 
vation and Cure " aptly said : — 

" We may in general describe brack deposits as the dust-bins outside the 
kitchen door." 

Storage of Water for Dry Period. 

The supplv of water in this canal is assured during nine months 
each year. Many ideas have been discussed by the shareholders 
for providing storage of water to tide over the dry months from 
January to March, but so far nothing tangible has been suggested. 
Meanwhile some of the farmers who have suitable sites upon their 
properties are forming storage dams to assist them to irrigate the 
crops when the canal is dry. It is a moot point amongst the 
shareholders if additional water during the dry period will result 
in a larger output of fodder from the irrigable lands. Some farmers 
are inclined to think that a period of rest for the lands when no water 
is available is a distinct advantage. They say that during this rest 
the lands have an opportunity to dry out — to remove the excess of 
water — and to lower the plane of saturation. Should water be 
provided for perennial irrigation a more extensive system of suitable 
drainage must follow : the irrigation canal and drainage cuts must 
form one arrangement for regulating moisture. Suitable sites 
exist for impounding water in the Breede Valley above the intake 
of the canal, but the time has not yet arrived for the Irrigation 
Board to seriously consider an extension of the scope of their scheme. 

Maintenance of Canal. 

The Irrigation Board have in their employ a Bailiff whose duty it 
is to patrol the canal frequently and report any irregularity at the 
Monthly meeting. During the dry period steps are taken to have the 


l>ed of the canal cleaned and a portion of the canal has been lined 
with cement concrete at a spot where the percolation of water was 
great. Year by year the \^'orks are improving, the canal banks are 
becoming more stable and the flood waters coming off the adjoining 
mountain slopes pass away, causing little, if any, damage where the 
canal cuts across the drainage lines. There are still a large number 
of minor improvements which can be made ; these are coming 
steadily, if somewhat slowly. 

Irrigation Board. 

The construction of the scheme by means of an Irrigation Board 
consisting of farmers who are all interested in its success tends to 
economical working, not only during the building of the works, but 
the maintenance charges are also kept low. Co-operation amongst 
irrigators under the jurisdiction of a Board has. in the Breede Valley, 
proved unquestionably to be a gratifying achievement. In this 
valley are found enterprising farmers who are prepared to embark 
and guarantee the interest upon expenditure connected with works 
of irrigation, jirovided they can be shown that the works will prove 
beneficial and remunerative. The Engineer must have sympathy 
with the farmer ; with the man who has to patiently toil through 
long days, and to withstand and overcome many disappointments 
and failures, before the reward for his labours can be wrestled from 
mother earth. 

Eeectiox of Board. 

The purely honorary office of a member of the Irrigation Board 
is a post for which there are many nominations every three years 
when the election takes place. The results are keenly scrutinised 
by the shareholders residing under the scheme. 

Sub-Division of Farms. 

An established Irrigable holding, 20 morgen in extent, when 
])laced under lucerne, is large enough to support a family in comfort 
in the Breede Valley : but I do not think that any farm should be 
sub-divided into a less area, otherwise than under exceptional 
circumstances, such as being close to a local market. An owner 
cultivating 40 morgen of land with mixed farming, including vine- 
yards producing vines, brandy and raisins, in conjunction with 
ostrich farming, must lead a busy life to efficiently supervise the 
varied operations and the necessary labour upon the propert5\ 
With ostrich farming alone double the above area under lucerne is 
about the extent of ground one man should work to obtain the best 
results from intensive farming. Of coiu-se there are many properties 
having more than 80 morgen of irrigable lands under one ownership 
— but these are not worked to the best advantage. Many of the 
owners are averse to disjiosing of their irrigable lands, wishing wisely 
to retain the properties for the next and rising generation. 

The sub-division of the irrigable land is coming about gradually, 
and there is every likelihood that within another decade farms will 
have reached reasonable dimensions, to be followed by a superior 
class of farming, with more levelling of the lands, more attention 
given to drainage, and better use made of the water generally. 


Viewing to-clav the irrigable lands, one is impressed by the 
newness of everything. The houses are new— and so are the fences. 
The homesteads remind one of the subm^bs of a town which is 
rapidly extending into the country. Time alone will enable the 
newness to disappear and a pastoral aspect to be assumed along 
the 2i| mile strip of country traversed by the canal. 


The establishment of the principle of the construction of an 
Irrigation Work by means of a Board consisting of the farmers 
themselves is now demonstrated as feasible, for it promotes eificiency 
and economy in expenditure, besides strengthening the practical 
side of those interested in the futherance of the scheme. The 
shareholders take an interest in the problems which have to be 
solved. They, having been interested in the work from its initiation, 
feel that it is a venture in which they hold a stake, just as if the 
project formed part of their own property. 

I venture to predict that combined action of the landowners in 
irrigation matters, as inaugurated in the Breede Valley, will be the 
direction in the future upon which South African Agricultural 
prosperity will largely be based. 

THE MARTIAN CANALS.— Dr. H. Cabourn Pocklington, 
M.A.. F.R.S., in a recent paper read before the Royal Society 
on the dimensions and function of the Martian canals, offered 
suggestions as to the nature of the canal beds, based upon Lowell's 
value of the velocity of flow along them. He then calculated the 
depth of the canals from the technical formulae, on the supposition 
that the canals are horizontal and that they carry water from pole 
to pole. Assuming a minimum width, the depth is calculated at 
500 feet : if their width is 4,500 feet the corresponding depth 
would l)e 370 feet. The deduction drawn as to the function of the 
canals is that they are essentially lines of communication, but may 
at the same time serve for irrigation purposes. 

FOCKEA CAPENSIS.— The Kew Bulletin, No. 8 of 1909 
{page 34g), contains an account of the re-discovery of an interesting 
plant, viz., Fockea capeiisis, Endl. A single specimen of this 
species is in cultivation at the Vienna Botanic (hardens, where its 
tuber had been sent more than 100 years ago, but no other collector 
seems to have ever met with the plant, hence it was thought that 
the Vienna plant was the only survivor of an extinct species. 
Recently, however, the plant was found near Prince Albert by 
Dr. Marloth, and flowering specimens were obtained through the 
aid of Dr. P. C. Luttig. 

The plant, which is locally known as " bergbarroe." is not 
edible, while the tubers of three other species of Fockea, called 
" kambarroe," are eaten raw by the natives or turned into pre- 
serves by the rural housewife. 



A Discrssiox of some of the Analytical Results obtained 


By St. C. O. Sinclair, M.A. 

Under the Food and Drugs Act (Act No. 5 of 1890) of the Cape 
Colony, no legal standards or limits for the chemical composition 
of milk exist, nor has the Government the power to lay down 
any such limits. Consequently in certifying to adulteration 
the Public Analyst simply states that it is his. opinion that any 
particular sample of milk is adulterated, and the standard he 
adopts on such occasions is practically one of his own fixing. He 
is quite at liberty to change his standard whenever he may deem 
it right to do so. 

In the Government Analytical Laboratories, however, it has 
been customary to adopt a minimum of 3% of fat, and 8*5% for 
" solids- not- fat," in estimating deficiency of fat or the addition 
of water in any specific sample of milk. « 

In the writer's capacity as Public Analyst, he has been asked, 
both in the witness box and outside of it, to justify his action 
in assuming these figures to be the limits for genuine milk sold 
to the Public. 

It is one of the purposes of the present paper, therefore, to 
show that the figures just stated are not without experimental 
foundation and the standards of other countries have not been 
arbitrarily adopted as has, on occasion, been contended. 

The writer has been questioned as to the seasonal variations 
which occur in the composition of genuine milk as sold, as well 
as to the difference in composition between milks of the morning 
supply and evening supply : furthermore, questions have, from 
time to time, been put as to the relative composition of the milk 
yielded by cows of various breeds. 

Now, although it is not claimed that this paper is a complete 
reply to all such queries as the above, and there are many reasons 
why it should not be thus regarded, — still it is hoped that the figures 
given below will show that there are some grounds at any rate 
for the opinions expressed on the above points. 

As by far the larger proportion of samples analysed by the 
writer have been taken in and about the Cape Peninsula, they 



will be dealt with almost entirely from that aspect, though not 
quite exclusively. 

The following table gives a summary of the analytical results 
of the milks examined in the Cape Peninsula during each quarter 
of the year 1907, 

Table 1. 







not fat. 





4th .. .. 





I -0309 
I -03 II 






1 8-57 

! 8-78 

8 -60 




I -03 1 2 



1 8-67 



It will be noticed that the percentage of fat reaches its maximum 
during the second quarter and falls off towards the fourth quarter. 
The other milk constituents reach their maxnium proj^ortions 
at a later period, apparently during the third quarter. 

All these samples were simply purchased under oidinary 
circumstances from milk vendors and include adulterated samples. 
The table would, of course, show better results had only .genuine 
milks been dealt with. 

Nevertheless, it will be seen that in no quarter did the com- 
position of the milk fall below the limits given at the commence- 
ment of this paper and that the average for the yt:-ar is above 
the adopted limits, particularly so with regard to the jierccntage 
of fat. 

The results for the year 1908 have been studied in greater detail. 
As before, Table IL gives the results for each quarter of that year. 

Table II. — Quarterly Averages for 1908. 


Number of 




not fat. 




3rd . . • . . 



1 -0306 

12-35 i 












Here again, it is shov/n that the milk fat reaches its maximum 
in the second quarter, falling off towards the fourth quarter. 
Further, it is to be remarked that the results for each quarter 
as well as for the year yield figures higher than those of the limits. 
The fairlv close agreement of Tables I. and-IL is to be noticed. 



Setting out the results of the 1,007 samples of this table in monthly 
averages we get the following figures : — 

Table III. — Monthly Averages for 190S. 


Number of 









not fat. 









76 • 






March . . 


I '0304 





April . . 


I -0304 







I -03 10 





June . . 







July . . 









I '03 1 5 



































The monthly averages, as will be noticed, do not fall below the 
limits, and the percentage of fat is noticeably above the limits 
adopted in this laboratory. According to these figures, the 
proportion of milk solids other than fat, in the milk of the Cape 
Division does not appear to vary by as much as one part in 400 
{i.e. less than -25%) between Summer and Winter. The percentage 
of fat increases in March and remains very nearly constant until 
it falls again in September. The total solids are also higher during 
those months than during the remaining months of the year. 
Generally the average milk appears to be better during the winter 
months. As already indicated, amongst the milks comprised 
in the above list are 62 samples reported adulterated ; had these 
been omitted the figures would obviously have been more favour- 

For purposes of comparison monthly percentages for the year 
1908, made up from 17,433 samples received from the farms 
supplying milk to the Aylesbury Dairy Company are appended 
(See Page 102). Mr. H. D. Richmond remarks, with regard to 
these results that " there is the usual difference between the morn- 
ing and evening milk of 0*4%, and the lowest fat occurs in June 
and the highest in the last four months of the year. It is a little 
unusual that the same average percentage of fat occurred in four 
successive months as it has generally been found that October 
and November are the months in which the fat is highest while 
September and December are not quite so good. As an indication 
of the influence of the temperature of the air on the quality of the 
milk, it may be mentioned that October and November were mild, 
v/hile a cold spell occurred in December : mild weather has a 
tendency to occasion a flush of milk comparatively poor in fat 
whilst cold weather acts in a contrary direction. The average 
percentage of fat (3-75) is the same as that found during 1907 
and agrees with the average of the last ten years." (H. D. 
Richmond. "The composition of milk, 1908." Analyst Vol. xxxiv. 
p. 208). 



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It may be of interest parenthetically here to insert a table show- 
ing the quarterly averages of milk sold in the Kimberley division. 
Table V. — Composition of Milk, KI^iBERLEY Division, iqo8. 


Number of 




uot fat. 



211(1 . . 

3rcl . . 


■ ! 34 


■ ! '1 

I -0323 
I -0307 















As is the case in the Cape Division, the percentage of fat reaches 
its maximum in the 2nd quarter and falls off towards the 4th 
quarter. This fact was also observed with the previous year's 
results. The milk purchased at Kimberley is shown to be, as 
was the case in 1907 also, richer in fat as well as in other milk 
solids. The above table includes 68 samples reported adulterated. 

The results above discussed are all those of analyses of samples 
of milk taken in the streets from the public supplies. 

In addition to these, 185 samples were also taken each from an 
individual cow. These comprise 168 samples from the individual 
€ows of 15 herds and 17 samples from individual cows kept singly 
and not forming part of a herd. Table VI. gives the average 
percentage of fat and solids not fat in the milk of each herd. 
Table VI. — Composition of 'SUlk of Herds, 1908. 

Number of 





cows in herd. 

not fat. 




Results of analysis of 
milk of herd. 

sample from mixed 










5 -40 






Calculated average. 




Results of analysis of 
milk of herd. 

sample from mixed 




Calculated average. 




















Results of analysis of 
milk of herd. 

sample from mixed 












Calculated average. 



liber of cc 

\vs in herd. 


Solids not fat. 










Average per 1 







It will be noticed that the average percentage of fat of each 
herd was well over the 3% limit and that the percentage of solids 
not fat also compared favourably with the standard. In no herd 
did the percentage of fat fall below the standard. With regard 
to the solids not fat, however, 5 herds showed averages below 
the limit. But as in actual practice no milks are reported adul- 
terated unless the solids not fat fall below 8% no sample would 
have been reported as adulterated had such sample been taken 
in the streets as exposed for sale to the public. It is only in 
calculating the amount of water added that the higher figure of 
8 '5% of solids not fat is used. The reason for the adoption of a 
higher figure in the calculation of results will be dealt with at a 
later stage of this paper. 

On critically examining the results obtained by the analysis of 
a sample of milk from each of the 185 cows the figures given in 
Table VII. are arrived at. 

Table VII. — Showing range of percentage of Fat and percentage of 
Solids not fat in milks from individual cows, 1908. 

Perce iitai^es of Fat. 

Number of samples containing under 2.5% 

S% and under 2-8% 

•8°/ 2Tl°/ 

" J 5 /o 

., 4-o% 

>. 4-5% 

„ ^-0% 

over : 

Total number of sainple^ 




(h) Percentage' of Solids not fat. 

Number of samples containing under 7.95% 

7"9s% and under 8-o% 

8-o% ,. „ 8-5% 

8-5% „ „ 9-o% 

9"o% and over 

Total number of samples 


It will be noticed that a very large proportion of these milks 
showed a fat content of over 3%, only 11 being under thit 
limit. With regard to the solids-not-fat, 35 were below 8%. Un- 
fortunately, no information is available as to whether the cows 
yielding the poor milk were in an abnormal condition or not. It 
is not unlikely that such abnormal condition of some of the cows 
may have been the cause of the low results. 

To turn now to the results for the year 1909. Table VIII. 
gives the quarterly averages for the first two quarters and or 
the two months July and August of samples of milk as sold in the 
streets, including adulterated samples. 


TaBI.K \'1II. AVERAGIiS, I909. 


Quarter. Number of 

Specific Total 
gravity. solids. 


not fat. 


ist .... 230 

2nd . . . . 1 22 q 
Julv lI' Ausjust 1 161 

1-0305 12-30 

1-0313 12-73 
1-0317 I2-6l 


8 -.S3 

87-27 ■ 

The agreement of these figures with those of Tables I. and II., 
giving the quarterly averages for 1907 and 1908, should be 

The monthly averages for the first eight months of the current 
year are as follows : — 

Table IX. — Monthly Averages for 1909. 


Number of 










not fat. 






; 8-47 









March . . 







April . . 


I -0313 




87 --^ 3 

May . . 


1-0314 1 





June . . 







Julv . . 














These results agree in the main with those of Table III., giving 
the monthly averages for 1908, the figures for the winter months 
being higher than those for the remaining months. 

During the period ist January to 31st August of the present 
year, six separate herds have been examined. Table X. gives the 
average figures for each herd. 

Table X. 

-Composition of IMilk of Herds examined January to August, 


of ' 




cows in herd. 

not fat. 




Results obtained on the analysis of mixed 
















Calcidated average. 





The milk of one herd of seven cows was abnormally low in its con- 
tent of solids not fat. 

Studying the composition of the milk of the individul cows 
making up these herds we find as follows : — 



Table XI. — Showing range of percentage of Fat and Solids not fat 

IN MILKS OF individual COWS, I909. 

(a) Percentage's of fed. 

Number of samples containing under 2.5% 

2-5% and under 2-8% 

2-8% „ „ 3-o% 

3-o% „ „ 3-5% 

3-5% ,. .. 4-o% 

4-0% ,, ,, 4-5% 

,.-0/ -TlO' 

5 "0% and over 
Total number of sam])les.. .. no 

(6) Percoitaties of Solids not fat. 

Number of samples containing under 7.95% . . . . . . 19 

7-95% and under 8 -0% 
8-o% „ „ 8-5% 

^■S% .. .. 9-o% .. .. 29 

,, ,, ,, 9"0% and over 

Total number of samples. 

As was the case in 1908 the larger proportion of the samples 
had a fat content ranging from 3*5% to under 4-5"o- whilst a good 
proportion contained 5^0 and over. With regard to the solids 
not fat, the bulk of the samples contained over 8-5%, i.e.. were 
above standard. 

During the 3'ear 616 samples were purchased in the streets 
from vendors in the Cape Peninsula. These samples were taken 
over a period of 100 days, the number of samples submitted on 
each day varying from two to eight. In no case was the daily 
average of these samples found to fall below ^% in fat content 
and 8-0% with regard to the solids not fat. Further, on 87 days 
the percentage of sohds not fat was 8-5 or over. On four days 
only was the percentage as low as 8.3. On the remaining nine 
days the total solids ranged from 8*40 to 8-43%. 

The results of the analysis of milk sold in the streets of Cape 
Town and suburbs during the past three years are too voluminous 
to be given in detail here, but from the examination of 
such results and from their summaries given in this paper, 
the fact is clear that the genuine milk sold in the Cape 
Peninsula, does not fall below 3% in its fat percentage, nor below 
8% in its percentage of solids not fat : further also that a large 
proportion of the milk exposed for sale has a percentage of solids 
not fat not below 8-5%. As the tables show, the average milk 
conforms well to this standard. It is for this reason that, although 
as already stated, in actual practice no sample is reported adul- 
terated unless the percentage of solids not fat falls below 8%, 
it is considered that a nearer approach to a correct estimation 
is obtained by adopting a standard of 8-5% as a basis, for cal- 
culation of the amount of water added. 

And again, although samples are reported adulterated, it is 
not customary to prosecute the vendors thereof, at any rate not 
without' further enquiry, unless the extent of the adulteration 



is over 6%, be it due to deficiency of tat or addition of water. 
Lastly, to allow the vendor every benefit of doubt, all facilities 
are granted to dairymen whose milk has been condemned, to 
have made an " appeal to the cow." 

It is, of course, well known that cases do occur in which, some- 
times, the milk of individual cows, and more rarely, the mixed 
milk from a small herd, falls below the limits given. But no 
standard can be established to embrace all such abnormal samples. 
It would mean that, as experience has shown, milks containing 
little more than 1% of fat would have to be passed as genuine 
simj^ly because at one time or another, a cow for particular reasons 
has yielded such abnormally poor milk. 

Regarding seasonal variations in the milk as supplied to the 
public by dairymen, the tables above given clearly show that such 
variations are too small to render a change of limits for different 
periods of the year necessary. 

Before leaving the question of milk standards it may be added, 
that, in fixing official limits it is only reasonable to draw upon 
the experience of several hundreds of analyses of samples of milk 
taken from milk as actually supplied by dairymen, and that the 
evidence obtained by the analysis of milk from a few cows or from 
small herds of specialised breed, when it would indicate the con- 
trary, should only be taken as " proving the rule." In the 
majority of cases there is no doubt that some factor such as age 
of cow, period in milk, condition of health, etc., has had an in- 
fluence in causing the milk to be abnormally poor. 

With regard to the variation between the morning and evening 
milk, reference to Table No. IV. will show that Richmond has 
found, with regard to the samples analysed for the Aylesbury 
Dairy Company, that the evening milk is slightly richer than that 
of the morning supply. 

The writer has unfortunately^ not been able to conduct any 
direct experiments to demonstrate the same occurrence in South 
Africa, but no facts have come to his notice to lead him to believe 
that as a rule, Richmond's experience is not repeated in this 
country. No doubt the chief factor in causing the variation 
is clue to the unequal intervals between the times of milking : 
the intervals between the morning and evening milking being 
usually shorter than those between the evening and morning. 

To record a few facts on the subject : 

A sample of the mixed milk of 11 cows was taken at Observatory 
on the afternoon of 28th December, 1908, and yielded the results 
shown under A (Table XII.) 

Table XII.. 

Specific gravity 

Totals olids 


Solids not fat 








1 1.46 










B was a sample of the mixed milk of the same herd taken on 
the morning of 31st December. 

A sample of mixed milk from four cows at iMowbra3^ taken 
in the afternoon, shewed the figures given in Column C. 

D represents the morning milk of the same herd. 

The following results of the analysis of separate samples of 
milk yielded by four cows during the holding of the Rosebank 
show, from 24th to 26th February. 1908, may be of interest :— 

Table XIII. — Milk fro.m Cows — Roseij.\nk Show. 

lb. oz. Specific 



not fat. 

Cow No. 791. 
24.2.08. M. 

2^.2.08. M. 












I "03 1 3 
I -0306 

I i<)'83 

1 2 -oo 
1 1-30 

Cow No. 792. 







1 1 



I -0335 

2 •40 


3 "50 








4'^ 3 


5 '5 5 





Cow No. 793. 
24.2.08. M. 

25.2.08. M. 







I -03 16 

Cow No. 794. 
24.2.08. M. 

25.2.08. M. 

26.2.08. M. 






I -03 1 7 





3 -38 




5 -03 
















It will be noticed that except in the case of the milk yielded 
by cow No. 793 on 26th February and that given by cow No. 794 
on 24th February, the evening milk was richer in fat. With the 
exception of the yield by cow No. 792 in the morning of the 25th 
February, the morning's supply was greater than that of the even- 
ing. As this cow had given 8 lbs. 3 ozs. the previous morning 
and 8 lbs. i oz. the following morning it would appear quite possible 
that on the occasion of the 25th this cow had not been fully 
milked. This would account for the great difference between the 
fat percentage of morning and evening milk on that day. On 
the 24th and 26th the difference was nearer the average. 

Leaving out this case as doubtful and also disregarding, as 
abnormal, the two instances in which the morning milk was the 



richer, the evening milk was higher in fat content than that of 
the morning by an average amount of -53. The difference, how- 
ever, was not a constant one. 

- The four cows had calved respectively gi, 50 and 140, and 63 
days previously to the date of testing their milk. 

As showing the variable differences in morning and evening 
milk which sometimes occur in the milk of individual cows, the 
following figures taken from the report of the chief chemist, New 
Zealand Department of Agriculture, year 1906, may be quoted : — 

Table XIV.— Morning and Evening Milks, New Zealand, 1905. 
Morning' Milk. 


Total Solids. Fat. 

Solids not fat. 






I I -68 3-22 
^2->?, 3-55 
12-10 3-20 
12-36 yzT, 
12-83 3-85 








Evening Milk. 
13-04 4- 1 8 

1 7 '34 7 7" 
13-16 3-90 

1376 4-45 
I 3 '63 4-45 





No. (i) was a Kerry cow in milk from 22nd April to 25th July, 

No. (2) was a Kerry cow in milk from 24th April to 25th Jul}', 

No. (3) was a Dexter in milk from ist April to 25th July, 1905. 

No. (4) was a Dexter in milk from 30th April to 25th July. 

No. (5) was a Dexter in milk from 3rd July to 25th July, 1905. 

The experiments were conducted apparently on 25th 
1905. Again, 

In Trinidad durmg 190(1 the monthly averages for the year 
showed the evening milk richer than the morning milk in fat 
content. The month of November showed figures slightly re- 
versed. The average for the year, howe\-er, was 4*22 for evening 
milk and 3*86 for morning milk. 

Looking at all the above figures from the point of view of the 
Public Analyst and bearing in mind what has been said generally 
with regard to the limits adopted in the Cape Colony, it is clear 
that these limits are, when applied to the judging of milk from 
the evening suppl}', rather in favour of the dairymen than other- 

With regard to the influence of breed, the following results 
obtained on the analysis of milk yielded by 13 cows in the 
Stellenbosch District are of value. (See Table XV.) 

I would draw attention to the small variation in the nitrogen 
content both in the case of individual cows as well as when com- 
parison is made of the milk yielded by cows of different breed. 
This small variation is interesting in view of the difference of 
opinion which appears to exist as to whether of the solids-not- 
fat in milk, it is the proteids or the lactose which is subject to 
the greatest variation. 


















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By R. Marloth, M.A., Ph.D. 

(Raid before llie Cape ChciuicaJ Socicly on the i^lh Oelober, iQog.) 

The diamondiferous area of German South- West Africa is a narrow 
strip of country in the neighbourhood of the coast, mostly only a 
few miles wide, but about 200 miles long, extending, as known at 
present, from Angras Juntas, latitude 28° S., to Conception Bay, 
four degrees further North. The deposits are generally a few miles 
away from the sea and very patchy, for large stretches of ground 
within that belt have not as yet produced any diamonds. 

The diamonds occur either directly on the surface or embedded 
in fine gravel, and where the latter is deep enough, diamonds have 
been found several feet below the surface. 

The rocks in the immediate neighbourhood of Angra Pequena 
are granite, gneiss and hornblende-schist, but south of Elizabeth 
Bay other older rocks are met with, especially various kinds of 
limestone. Overlying them, unconformabl}' here and there, are 
remnants of quartzitic beds of cretaceous age, and in a few 
places, e.g., on the Pomona table mountains, quartzitic con- 
glomerates occur, which contain numerous pebbles that are evi- 
dently waterworn. Still younger are some dykes of lamprophyre, 
which traverse the country for miles, especially south of the 
Pomona territory. 

The theories advanced for the origin of the diamonds of these 
districts may be divided into three groups, namely : (i) they are 
supposed to be of local origin. (2) to have come from the sea, or 
(3) from the area of the Vaal River. The first theory, which would 
mean that the diamonds had been derived from an area in which 
only gneissose and granitic rocks are known, we may leave out 
of account, although a few geologists think the occurrence of 
diamonds in such rocks quite feasible. No pipes with diamondifer- 
ous blue ground are known as yet from German South- West Africa, 
although quite a number of pipes, with blank kimberlite. exist 
further inland. 

Among the prospectors who know the countr}- south of Prince 
of Wales Bay, the belief is quite common that Pomona diamonds 
came from some volcanic fissures that occurred there, and which, 
as mentioned before, are filled with a black volcanic rock, showing 
large crystals of hornblende. 

Among geologists, however, the belief was fairly general that 
the diamonds originally came out of some blue ground, but on the 
question where the pipe or pipes which contained that blue ground 
were situated much difference of opinion existed. 

Mr. Merensky* assumed that in or before cretaceous times 
land existed to the west of the present coast, while the j)resent 
land was still submerged under the waves of the ocean. The 
■diamonds were washed into that ocean from the west, and 
embedded in the sand which went to form the cretaceous 

* Trans. Geol. Soc. of S.A., 1909, \'ol. XII. , pp. 13-23. 


sandstone. When the coast had risen, and the quartzites 
removed by weathering and deflation, the diamonds remained 
behind and gradnally accumulated in the surface graveL There 
is, however, no positive evidence available for connecting the 
diamonds with the cjuartzite, for the reported discover}^ of some 
diamonds in that rock (Merensky does not refer to this report in 
his paper) is due to a misunderstanding by inexperienced observers. 

When I heard of this find, which had been made by a trust- 
worthy person, I made inquiries, and was finally able to go to the 
exact spot, about lo miles south of Prince of Wales Bay. Two 
diamonds had been broken out of the stone or, rather, they had 
dropped out when a piece of sandstone was broken up. That 
stone was. however, not the cretaceous sandstone discovered and 
described by Merensky, and fairly common in that part of the coun- 
try, but an entirely recent formation. The locality was a broad 
furrow running for several miles S.W. by N.E., and due to the 
weathering of a d^^ke. about three feet thick. Within that furrow 
sand had accumulated and become quite hard, like a real sandstone ; 
but it was merely hardened sand, such as is formed every day 
at the present time. With the sand, the diamonds had fallen 
into that furrow and become encased in the hardening sand. On 
the other hand, not a single diamond has been found as yet in 
the cretaceous sandstone. 

A])art from that feature of Merensk^-'s theory, it was quite 
possible that he was right in assuming that the diamonds had come 
from the sea. 

Quite a different view was expressed b}' Dr. Lotz*. who, briefly 
stated, assumes that the diamonds originally had come from the 
area of the Vaal River, and that they were carried into the sea 
by the Orange River. The distribution along the coast belt would 
have been effected by ocean currents, and finally the wind would 
have transported them in a northerly direction. 

It must be admitted that the occurrence of numerous water- worn 
pebbles of agates, etc., along the present coast, as far north as 
Walfish Bay, as well as some miles inland, at an altitude of at least 
150 feet above the present sea level, made that view appear quite 
feasible, for the pebbles were in many cases quite similar to those 
found in and about the Vaal, and were evidently derived from 
the same rocks. 

On the other hand, we must consider that the Vaal River deposits 
were 500 miles away, and that, in spite of much prospecting along 
the Vaal and Orange Rivers, no other alluvial deposits have been 
found as yet ; hence it does not appear very probable that the 
diamonds of German South-W^est Africa had travelled all that 
distance, although the pebbles undoubtedly had done so. Hence 
I prefer to share the view of Mr. J. Kuntz,t who said, in reply to 
Dr. Lotz's paper : " It is possible that the agate-pebbles, etc., do 
come from the Orange River, but the diamonds have probably a 
nearer source, which is at present either hidden by the sea or still 
to^be discovered in the desert near by." 

* Lotz, H., Mon. Ber. Deutsch. Geol. Ges., 1909, No. 3. 
t Kuntz, J., Mon. Ber. Deutsch. Geol. Ges., 1909, No. 4. 


By Rev. Father Norton, S.S.M. 

At ]\Iodderpoort we have a very decre]iit old woman who passed 
out of the circumcision school just at the time of the inroads of 
the Eastern tribes in 1822. which were owing to the Lifaqane 
or disturbances due to Tshaka's tyranny in Zululand. As she 
was about 16 in 1822. she must have been born about 1806. the 
year in which the Holy Roman Empire was suppressed by Napoleon. 
She is now, therefore, about 103 years old. 

She w'as taken captive by the Mankoane, who swept down the 
country in pursuit of Pakalitha and his Mahlubi, whose ruined 
kraals may still be traced at Mabolela on the right of the line 
before reaching Clocolan, and who had themselves come on from 
Natal to avenge the death of one of them on young Sikonyela. 
chief of the Batlokoa, who were at that time beyond Bethlehem, 
and who afterwards settled at Ficksburg. after causing consider- 
able disturbance and displacement further West. A useful sum- 
mary of these wars appears in the Mori j a Suto Almanac. They 
produced far off eddies, even among the Becoana tribes on the 
border of the Kalahari, as one may see in Dr. Moffat's (of Kuruman. 
fa her-in-law of Livingstone) vivid account of Lithako attacked 
by the Mantatees. This was probably a Colony name for the 
Basuto tribes in general, derived from a well-known character, 
Mantati, chieftainess of the Batlokoa, a sort of African Boadicea.* 
The chief ingredient of their horde, however, was probably 
Bafekeng. another branch of which adventurous race went north- 
ward with Sebetoane to Lake Ngami and the Zambesi, in 1823. 
The name of th's clan means Men of the mist or dew, and in legend 
they appear as the first to step forth from the hole in the earth 
called Ntsoanatsatsi, or the Dayspring, still regarded as the home 
of the ancestors, facing which (to North or East) corpses are buried 
in a sitting posture (among the Zulus, I am told, only chiefs ; 
among the Bushmen lying on one side, but still towards the East). 

They brushed off the early dew as they came out of Tsoanatsatsi 
and have been in the forefront ever since, though a mild and gentle 
people. It is their language which forms literary Sesuto, They 
made alliance in marriage and war with the Bakoena or Men of 
the Crocodile. I have photos of a member of the royal family 
of that clan, the Ba Monaheng. from a widow out of which Moshesh's 
father c me through an irregular union with a Zulu. He is 
grandson to the old prophetess who died at Modderpoort in 1905. 
cousin to ]\Iakelele, the subject of my paper, with whom she was 
coeval. This man would have been chief at Modderpoort if the 
country had not been conquered. I ha\'e also a portrait of 
the brother of the chief of the BaTaung of Ramokhele, who formerly 

* Just opposite Modderpoort Mantati frightened away the Zulus pursuing 
her by drawing up the women and children, armed, behind the herd, when 
the men were out foraging. 


held the land from Modderpooit (which in Suto is called " The 
Pass of the Lions." })robablv after the Bataung or lion clan,' 
another branch of which still lives at Vrolykheid) to Liheleng, 
or the place of throwing down, where the Basuto in '51 drove the 
Thaba Nchu Baralong over the edge of the Viervoet. and nearly 
took the guns of Major Warden, whose allies they were, and who 
retired to Bloemfontein the next day. The Bataung are en- 
dogamous. as all the tribes. I am told by one of them, w^re formerly. 
Hence the very characteristic physiognomy of the clan. 

My old friend. Makelele. then, around whose life I am grouping 
m}/ material, and who ga.v(? me a large amount of my information 
about these early days, was taken prisoner by the Mankuane, 
who with other Zulu tribes had scattered her people, the Bakoena 
of Monaheng, northwards from Mequatleng their home, between 
the Viervoet and Korannaberg. The pressure of famine was 
so great among her own people, owing to the constant raiding, 
which made it not worth while sowing where no one knew who 
would reap, that even the children had to be fed on game as soon 
as they were weaned, and they were glad to learn from the despised 
Bushmen in the neighbourhood of Mequatleng how to snare the 
plentiful game by digging pits with a light covering of branches. 
The game included gnus, blesbok, springbok, deer, eland, wolves, 
lions. Even Makelele's daughter Uboeakae had seen these ; her 
mother also wild oxen and rhinos. One day she and some other girls 
had hidden in the rocks for fear of passing Zulus. A man i)assed 
and asked v/hy they were hiding, and told them to come out. 
When they had done so, one of them was hornched by a rhino 
and the rest ran away. She also remembers the hippo in the rivers, 
and how they pepa their children on their backs, as she says, like 
women or monkeys. The voice of the cow was so unknown that 
when the little children heard it they cried that it was a wolf. 
This state of continual war with unsettlement of peoples was 
strange to the races of these parts. Before then there was, of course, 
constant fighting, but it is said to have resembled Irish village 
fighting, just a day's shindy to keep their hands in, ending up 
with drinks all round. 

Another effect of the famine was that both the captors of 
Makelele and her own people began to indulge in human flesh. 
It is well known that Moshesh's grandfather was left behind in a 
flight and carried off by cannibals while the fugitives were still 
in sight. This explains Moshesh's bon mot, when he was urged 
to deal rigorously with the man eaters, that it would be wrong 
to do harm to the grave of one's ancestors. His policy was to 
recognise the dire distress in which cannibalism originated and 
wean men from it by grants of grain rather than exterminate 
them. Makelele's father was eaten by cannibals of the Crocodile 
clan, and strangely enough by the very family into which her 
grandson Nteke afterwards n:iarried. 

She wa . not long in bondage to the Mankoane, but managed 
to escape after six months. She still bears a mark of her ad- 
ventures in the long lobes of her ears where her great Zulu earrings 
were fixed. The opportunity to escape was given by the arrival 


of some of her people, who came ostensibly to trade with the 
Mankoane. She asked leave to visit them ; her mistress refused, 
but her master, good easy man, said " Let a Mosuto visit Basuto." 
She returned from the first visit, but the second time remained 
away. It is significant that these friends of hers had come to 
buy corn in exchange for skins. 

They wanted to get a change of diet from perpetual game, by 
exchanging the spoils of that game for corn, perhaps raided from 
their own fields. An interesting example of how trade comes 
in to heal the wounds of war. I dare say her good-natured 
master was not so sorry she escaped. 

It must be remembered that these things were long before the 
days of a compact Basuto nation, which is an artificial political 
unity, formed as tribe after tribe, Becoana and Bataung from 
the north-west, Bapeli from the north and Zuhis from the north- 
east, gathered around the growing power and influence of Moshesh. 
It is not, like the English nation, a recent amalgam of widely various 
races inextricably mingled of old, but a recent conglomerate of 
fairly cognate tribes, coming from different quarters. 

The native account of the arrival of first missionaries at Modder- 
poort in June, 1833, is as follows : — Moshesh wanted to buy two 
Baruti, so he sent 20 head of cattle. A Bushman of the Makho- 
mokholo tribe (so called by the Basuto) took and ate the cattle. 
It was this tribe which painted the pictures. Moshesh sent 30 
head. The Bushman kept them and killed the herds. Then 
Moshesh asked for peace and two of his daughters in exchange 
for the cattle. The Bushman gave him his daughter Qea and 
another called by Basuto 'Matseola. Moshesh also gave his 
father-in-law leave to hunt eland in the Maluti. He was then 
able to send 500 cattle to bring the Baruti. They were stopped 
by hungry lions by the Grange at Modderpoort. Moshesh sent 
people with dogs and then Letsie his son, with 22 goats for the 
whole company. They passed as the railway does now on the 
Viervoet side of the Spitzkop. Letsie feared the lions which 
stole two goats, and slept at Ladybrand on the way back to Thaba 
Bosni. Then Moshesh came with his litona and all the Basuto 
came with dogs. Ramakainyane passed this side of Spitzkop 
(which was better than the other side) though both were full of 
reeds. They shouted with excitement and the Mosuti shot with 
Moshesh's gun. They then hurried to come, (I am bound to say 
that I have read M. Casalis' account of his arrival, and this exciting 
hunt does not appear. Either he is quite unnecessarily modest 
or else we have an interesting example of the growth of myth). 

An educated native, son of the missionaries' first interpreter, 
gave me this interesting gloss on the above account : Moshesh 
only sent one lot of cattle, which was captured by Griquas after 
they had passed Modderpoort. The missionaries then said they 
would come without being bought, and they brought the word of 
God, which should not be bought with cattle. It was these 
Griquas which went to Basutoland. 

But let me leave you with the naive native view of my former 
informant, a daughter-in-law of Moshesh. The Hottentot Kompi 

:modderpoort oxe hundred years ago. 117 

advised Moshesh, since he was fighting the Matabele every day 
and night nearly, that there were some white men who praised 
God. He hoped they would come and pray God to help Moshesh. 
" How can I get them ?" " Yoti had better buy them." "What 
with ?" " With rhino tusks." (so precious they were used for 
chiefs sceptres). " They are very scarce ; is there no other 
way ?" " Try with cattle then." .... 

the Department of Agriculture and Forestry of Nyasaland recently 
issued the first report of that Department. Maize, millet, wheat 
and rice are stated to grow well in the country, but, as native car- 
riers constitute the only means of transport, the cultivation of 
those cereals for export is as yet impracticable. The yield of 
cotton is increasing, and the breeding of acclimatised seed on 
Government farms, which would also be the means of training 
native instructors in cotton-growing, is suggested. The cultiva- 
tion of coffee is regaining its lost popularity, and a considerable 
export of cultivated rubber is looked for, Ceara rubber having been 
most extensively planted. An arboretum has been established 
adjacent to the Bwaila forest nursery, where Eucalypts, Acacias 
and Albizzias in large number have been planted. Attempts are 
also being made in the cultivation of Piniis pinaster and Pinus 
pinea. During the year 150,000 Mlanje cypress and 80,000 Euca- 
lypts were raised in the Zomba nurseries, and at Blantyre 15,000 
Eucalypts and 8,000 young African mahogany trees were ])lanted 
along the Mudi river banks. 

INSTITUTE OF CHEMISTRY.— The Council of the 
Institute of Chemistry of Great Britain and Ireland has appointed 
the following gentlemen as Honorary Local Secretaries of the 
Institute in South Africa: Dr. C. F.^Juritz, M.A., D.Sc, F.I.C., 
Government Analytical Laboratory, Cape Town, Cape of Good 
Hope ; Mr. E. N. Nevill, F.R.S., F.I.C., Government Laboratory, 
Durban, Natal; and Dr. J. McCrae, Ph.D., F.I.C., Government 
Laboratories, Johannesburg. Mr. J. S. Jamieson, F.I.C., Govern- 
ment Laboratory, Durban, Natal, has been appointed Assistant 
Honorary Local Secretary. Similar appointments have also been 
made in New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia, Ontario, 
Egypt, Barbados, British Guiana and Trinidad, and the Council 
is contemplating additional appointments in Canada, India and 
New Zealand. The main duties of the Local Secretaries will be tO' 
afford information to candidates desirous of entering for the exam- 
inations of the Institute, and to advise the Council with respect 
to matters of local professional interest. The Institute has 
hitherto confined its activities almost exclusively to the British 
Isles, and it is considered that this step will be of advantage in other 
parts of the Empire in furthering the work of the Institute in 
connection with the promotion of higher chemical education, in 
arranging for local examinations, and in watching professional 



The latest bulletin of the Imperial Institute contains a short sum- 
mary of what is known regarding the iron ore deposits of several 
of the British Crown Colonies and Protectorates. Amongst the 
African Colonies and Protectorates dealt with are Xyasaland and 
Rhodesia. Iron ores are disseminated throughout almost the 
whole Nyasaland Protectorate. From these scattered deposits the 
natives formerly obtained iron for their spears and implements, 
and the ruins of their smelting furnaces, as well as their abandoned 
slag-heaps, are still visible. The Nyasaland ores described com- 
prise Magnetite and haematite deposits of metamorphic origin, 
Haematite deposits of Karroo age. Superficial Limonite deposits, 
and Ferruginous river sands. Many of these ores are stated to be 
capable of producing good pig-iron, although in some cases the 
phosphorus present would interfere with the manufacture of steel. 
Lime for fluxing and coal for fuel likewise occur in the Protectorate, 
although at a distance from each other and from the iron ore 
deposits. The report goes on to say that 

" the isolated position of Nyasaland and the conse<[uent transport difficulties 
preclude the possibility of these iron ores, or of iron and steel made from 
them being exported to countries outside Africa under present conditions. 
The local needs of the country are at present scanty, and are more cheaply 
supplied by iron implements imported from the United Kingdom. In the 
future, however, there is little doubt that these ores will be largely utilised 
to supply the requirements of Nj^asaland and the adjoining territories." 

The references to the Rhodesian ores are less detailed. ^lention 
is made of the iron ores of Lealui and the Matotela country, and of 
the Magnetite and titaniferous ores of North-Eastern Rhodesia, 
as well as the ancient slag-heaps near the Victoria Falls. Among 
the strongly-folded rocks of Southern Rhodesia banded ironstone 
is met with. 



AuFBEREiTUNG. P. A. Wagner, Ing.Dr. pp. xviii. and 207. js. 
Berlin : Gebriider Borntraeger. The record of a personal examination 
in situ of South African diamondiferous rocks, and of a subsequeiit 
study thereof in the laboratories of Prof. Rosenbusch in Heidelberg 
and Prof. Beck in Freiberg. 
Cyrus Hall McCormick : his life and work. H. N. Casson. lUus. 
pp. xii. and 264. Chicago: A. C. McChirg <sy Co. As a manufacturer 
of agricultural machinerj' the name of McCormick has been a familiar 
one in agriculture all the world over for over three score years. Born 
just a century ago, in the birth year of Chopin. Mendelssohn, Lincoln, 
Tennyson and Darwin, McCormick showed a strong inventive genius 
even at the age of fifteen ; at eighteen, while studying surv^eying, he 
made his own quadrant, and when only 22 years old he turned out what 
was the first practical Reaper in the world's history. Twelve thousand 
patents for Reapers and Mowers have since been issued, but the type 
of the hrst IMcCormick Reaper, it is declared, not one of them has ever 
overthrown. In his introduction the biographer aflirms that " no 
other one man so truly represented the dawn of the industrial era, — the 
grapple of the pioneer with the crudities of a new country, the replacing 
of muscle with machinery, and the establishment of better ways and 
better times in farm and city alike." At Koeberg — the granary of the 
Cape Colony — and elsewhere in this land, the ^McCormick machines 
are far from unknown, but, that aspect apart, the pioneer is still to be 
found in many spots in South Africa, and he — if no other — will read 
with a sympathetic interest this "epic of the wlieat," this tale of liow 
wheat-eating races were instructed in the mode of increasing " seven 
small loaves " so that multitudes should be fed. 


By H. S. Morris 

Hemitelia Capensis is a fine tree fern found growing in several 
parts of the Table Mountain range. The average height to the 
crown of the stem is about five feet, but maj^ in some specimens 
be as much as eight feet. The stem is clothed with decayed leaf- 
bases, closely crowded together, and, including these, has a diameter 
of from 4 to 4^ inches ; but the stem proper is about 3 to 3^ inches 

The stem itself is composed of an outer hard fibrous layer, dark 
brown in colour, enclosing a narrow zone of white parenchymatous 
starchy ground tissue, and within this is a thick stelar cylinder 
perforated by circular foliar gaps, and appearing in transverse 
section as a broken ring of large steles. Four or five foliar gaps 
are usually shown in one section, the margins of the steles bend- 
ing out towards the fibrous layer (fig. i). This cylinder encloses 

Fig. I. 

a large mass of the ground tissue containing man\' small circular 
bundles, frequently in pairs, and some of these, more especially 
the larger ones nearest the bundle tube, are leaf traces. All the 
steles are concentric and completely enclosed by a thick la3'er 
of brown Sclerenchyma. 

Two leaf traces pass into each leaf through the foliar gap and 
are peculiar. Each comes in contact with the top margin of the 
gap as it passes through and fuses with the main tube, the scleren- 
chyma and phloem successively disappearing between them, the 
xylem thus becoming continuous. Each leaf trace at this point 
presents the appearance of having been incompletely constricted 
off from the edge of the large stele, but this is not the case. The 
pair are labout two lines separate as they enter the leaf and do 


>TEM STRUCTURE OF Hemiteliii Capensis. 

not fuse with each other at all in the gap. As they approach 
the outer margin of the bundle tube they again separate from 
it and form two of a ring of about 13 bundles, which constitute 
the vascular system of the petiole. The other eleven strands 
arise from the bundle tube from the edge of the foliar gap and 
thus have quite a different origin from the other two and are 
described later in this paper. On the inside the pair descend at 
a sharp angle and curve round slightly, being never more than 
a quarter of an inch apart from the bundle tube. They curve 
back gradually till they again touch the tube at a distance of 
about 18 to 24 lines below the foliar gap. This is not constant, 
and it was observed that only about a third of the strands touch 
the ring again, while the rest pass on down the stem and end 
blindly by tapering off to a fine point about 3 or 4 inches below 
the insertion of the leaf (fig. 2). 

^ Those which touch the main ring do not, as in the gap itself, 
fuse with the stele, but, in all cases observed, only the Scleren- 
chyma becomes joined, and thus the bundles proper are only in 
direct contact with the cylinder at the one place, namely, in the 
foliar gap. It is also seen that, in a fair number of cases, the 



Fig- 3- 

pair of leaf traces fuse together a short way below the gap and 
then pass on downwards as one strand, ending blindly Tike the 

STEM STRUCTURE OF HcuutcUn CapCHsis. 121 

single ones. De Bary (I) mentions that in some species of Cyathea 
and Aisophila, 

" there are, in addition, small bundles which originate from the foliar gaps 
and traverse pith and cortex, there forming a delicate open network." 

Nothing of this nature occurs in Hemitelia. The same author 
also describes the frequent anastomosing of the two inner leaf- 
traces and also of those arising from the outer edge of the foliar 
gap itself. However, in Hemitelia, as shown in figures 2 and 3, 
there is very little anastomosing as describe-d above, the two 
traces may join together and their Sclerenchymatous sheath may 
join that of the main tube, but after the separation of the leaf 
bundles in the leaf base they all continue their course independently 
into the leaf. Shortly after they separate a hard ring of scleren- 
chyma is formed about half an inch from the base of the leaf, 
thus joining up the whole ring of bundles, but above this they 
are free. 

From the leaf base below this band smaller bundles are given off 
adventitiously. Buds are eventually formed where these terminate 
and grow into small plantlets. The plantlets are seen arising from 
many of the old leaf bases on the lower side and producing small 
leaves. They probably drop off and constitute a means of vegeta- 
tive reproduction. 

De Bary also mentions (quoting Mettenius) that in transverse 
section of the petiole a curve of several bundles is seen, convex 
below and curving inwards on the upper side towards the centre 
of the section. I found that coming off from the margin of the foliar 
gap there are two leaf traces, described above, and an outer ring 
of about nine others, while from the inside of this ring, but also 
Irom tlie edge ol the gap, arise two other bundles, one on each 
side and just below the two top ones. This would give the appear- 
ance of the two ends of a line of bundles curving inwards as Met- 
tenius (2) described (see figs. 3 and 4). 

Fig. 4. 

In the pith itself, in transverse section, one sees numerous bun- 
dles of varying sizes. At first sight it would seem that these 
also are leaf traces, but careful dissection of several specimens 
showed that they have absolutely no connection with the leaves 
and are purely cauline bundles. Moreover they are themselves 
imconnected, so that each one can be separately dissected from 
1he pith. Each tapers towards the extremitits and ends blindly 

122 STEM STRUCTURE OF Hemitdiu CapL'HSis. 

above and below. This elongate spindle form explains the ap- 
pearance, in transverse section, of apparently larger and smaller 
steles, as it is obvious that the smaller ones are the ends of strands, 
while the larger ones are sections at or near the centre, where they 
are thicker. 

This structure suggests that the inner system is possibly the 
remains of an ancestral reticulate system, separate from that 
of the large bundle tube and connected to it only by the two leaf 
traces entering each foliar gap from within. From the above 
description it will be seen that the vascular structure is less com-, 
plicated than that of other Cyatheaceae, being marked by the 
absence of such free anastomoses as occurs in other genera. 

My thanks are due to Mr. "U\ T. Saxton, who suggested this 
investigation, which was carried out in the Botanical Laboratory 
of the South African College, Cape Town. 


1. De Bary : " Comparative Anatomy of the Phanerogams and 


2. Mettenius :* " Ueber den Bau von Angiopteris." Abhandl. d. K. 

Sachs. Gesellsch. d. Wissensch. IX. 

Fig. I. Transverse section of stem with old leaf bases and other decayed 

matter removed: A, fibrous layer; B, ground tissue; C, 

sclerenchymatous sheath of bundle ; D, phloem ; E, xylem ; 

F, leaf trace ; G, cauline steles. 
Fig. 2. Sketch of portion of bundle tube showing pairs of leaf traces passing 

into the foliar gaps : view from the inside, i natural size. C, D, 

E, F, as in Fig. i ; LB, leafbase. 
Fig. 3. Sketch of same but from the outside, showing rings of bundles arising 

from the foliar gaps. LB, leafbase ; SP, sclerenchymatous 

plate ; F, leaftrace from pith ; G. leaftraces from margin of 

foliar gap. 
Fig. 4. Transverse section of petiole. F. leaf traces from the pith ; G, 

inner two from margin of gap ; A, epidermis ; B, ground tissue. 

GROUP. — Ramsay and Usher announce (Berichte, iqoq, \'oL 
42, pp. 2930-2931). that they have submitted solutions of different 
salts of the Carbon group of elements to the action of radium 
emanation for four weeks. The emanation had in each case, 
been carefully freed from Carbon dioxide, but the latter was, 
in every instance, subsequently found in the resulting gas. some- 
times accompanied by carbon monoxide. The elements thus 
experimented upon were Silicon. Titanium, Zirconium. Thorium, 
and Lead, and the conclusion is expressed that each of these 
elements, without exception, gives rise to carbon compounds under 
the action of radium emanation. Lead appeared to be the most 
stable, and to exhibit least tendency to change into carbon. 

* The latter paper could not be procured here, so that it was impossible 
to ascertain how much of the work had already been done. However, the 
few remarks on the subject, which were got froni De Bary's work, seemed 
to point to the fact that the investigation (if any real study of the stem has 
ever been, undertaken before) was either very superficial, or carried out witii 
insufficient material. 


By J. A/ H. ArmstroxGjF.C.S. 

• As is already well known, there exists within the limits of the 
Colony of Natal a narrow belt of granite, gneiss and schistose rocks — 
extending from the Mapamulo District, in the northern part of 
the Colony, to near the mouth of the Umtamvuna River in the south. 
The Table Mountain Sandstone Series rests unconformably on these 
older rocks. The name Palaeozoic Sandstones has been adopted by 
some, but a study of the series, in the various Colonies in which they 
occur, cannot alter the fact, I think, that these sandstones, in being 
designated Table Mountain Sandstones, possess their right title both 
in name and correlation. The other rocks then belong to the 
Archaean System, and are known as the Swazieland Series and 
Intrusive Granite. To a study of these a great part of my time 
has been devoted for some time past. At various localities, through- 
out this narrow belt, the soil and subsoil found covering these 
ancient rocks is of comparatively no depth. At times it is to be seen 
not more than a few inches deep. This fact no doubt accounts for 
the absence of bush and forest from large tracts of land on the belt. 
The country is very broken and at times rugged. The pictiu'esque- 
ness of the scene is often enriched by the occurrence of an outlier 
of the Table Mountain Sandstone Series resting on these older rocks 
and forming a flat-top})ed hill. The proportion of subsoil to the soil 
is often infinitesimally small and at the junction of the subsoil and 
rocks there can be seen occasionally the sites of the ancient courses 
taken by surface waters in their flow to lower levels. The granites 
for the most part consist of aggregates of quartz, felspar and mica. 
The quartz is usually of a clear glassy nature, though I have seen 
pieces of it exhibiting at times a bluish or reddish tinge. The felspar 
is usually the flesh-coloured variety of orthoclase though triclinic 
felspar is also to be found. The mica grouj:* is rejiresented by either 
or both Biotite and Muscovite, but the latter variety of mica I have 
come across usually in the more coarsely crystalline varieties of 
white coloured granite. 

One cannot help being struck at the variability in colour that 
occurs in the felspar in the granite within certain areas. In some 
specimens, within a distance of but a few inches, I have seen the 
colour of the felspar vary from a light reddish brown to almost pure 
white. In fact in some places the granite has its felspar constituent 
so white that, were it not for the similarity in mineralogical com- 
position, and the variability in colour of the felspar, one would be 
apt, at a first glance, to subdivide them, and to assign them to, 
separate ages. 

These granite rocks can be well examined along the beds and banks 
of streams where their outcrops are often visible. Overlying them 
are to be found true gneissic rocks. These likewise differ in the 
colour of the felspar constituent present, but the remarks applicable 
to that mineral in the case of the granites are equally applicable 


to it in the case ot the gneiss. Xo hne of demarcation is visible 
between the underlying granite and the gneiss. The one series 
passes u}) imperceptibly into the other. The foliated structure 
seems to take its origin in the granite, .and passes up through several 
degrees of regularity, until it appears in the most typical form in 
the gneiss. As a red coloured gneiss is invariably found overlying a 
red-coloured granite, and a white gneiss a white granite, coupled 
with the above facts on the foliation, I think it reasonable to con- 
clude that the gneiss is a portion of the original granitic magma 
which has suffered under the effects of the metamorphic influences. 
Fine bands of rock of a quartzose nature are to be found impregnat- 
ing the gneiss in a direction })arallel to the line of foliation. 

Resting on these gneisses are rocks of great thickness but of a 
softer and somewhat more friable nature. There is likewise no true 
line of demarcation between them and the underlying gneiss. They 
appear to have suffered to a greater extent from the effects of 
metamor]:)hic influences than the gneiss. They have the same 
mineralogical comjwsition as the underlying series, but their 
felspathic constituent has suffered more from decomposition. The 
occurrence in them of mica is most marked. The mica is the 

variety known as sericite. This has been derived from their felspar 
constituent. These rocks are very much jointed. The joints,, 
which are of various degrees in fineness, are to be found mostly 
running in the direction of dip. but there are other systems of joints 
traversing the series in an irregular manner such as to lead one to 
believe that they must have been arranged round centres of disturb- 
ances. Along the joint planes are often to be found scales or films of 
silver}' sericite covering particles of quartz or felsi^ar ; and in other 
joint planes which appear to widen out as they reach the top of an 
outcrop, the whole crevice has been filled up by very fine white clay 
or kaolin. This has been filled in b}^ percolating waters. At the 
present time enormous quantities of water are to l:>e found percolating" 
through these rocks by means of these joint })lanes. Thesa 
micaceous schists have a greater degree of fissility along the planes of 
foliation than the gneiss. There is undoubted evidence that these 
Archaean rocks have been intruded l^y basic intrusions of different 
ages. Near Kentterton, Natal, in a railway cutting, is to be 
found an instance of a typical doleritic rock intruding these ancient 
rocks. At a few other places I have seen the same thing but 
unfortunately the basic intrusive rock has been in a most advanced 
state of decomposition. Near Dumisa, Natal, is to be found a d\ ke- 
like prolongation in the granite and gneiss. This basic rock, of 
much older date than the doleritic type, had been intruded into 
the granite but it has undergone complete alteration and appears- 
now as a chlorite schist. It must have suffered from metamorphic 
influences during the same period that the granite and gneiss and 
schist did. I now refer to veins of pegmatite which occur 
abundantly in these ancient rocks. They appear to belong to two 
separate i)eriods. Those that belong to the later period appear to 
have suffered no changes other than ordinary decomposition, and 
hence 1 conclude that they were formed at a later period in the earth's 
history than that at which the gneiss came into existence. They 


are generally to be seen as dyke-like masses intruding the ancient 
rocks. More often than not they cut the schistose rocks at almost 
right angles to the ])lanes of foliation. They also appear to have 
filled in fissures and rents in the schists in an irregular manner. 
The}' vary in thickness from a few inches to a few feet, and consist 
essentially of an admixture of felspar and quartz, the felspar nearly 
always being orthoclase. It is often in a good state of preservation. 
A glance at its cleavage planes often reveals the fact of decomj^osition 
having commenced. Garnets and mica are also to be found at 
times in tliese pegmatites. 

At the line of contact of these veins and within a short distance on 
either side the regularity and definition of the joint planes in the 
adjoining rocks are most marked. They often appear to have been 
formed in a joint plane. Those that appear to belong to the earlier 
period have undoubtedly shared the fate of the other ancient rocks 
in the metamorphic disturbances. They also aj^pear to consist and 
have consisted of an admixture of felspar, quartz, with occasional 
garnets and a little mica. I say "have consisted" in order the better 
to explain their connection with a system of quartz veins or leaders 
found traversing the Swazieland schists. These leaders, if thus I 
may call them, have a general line of strike across the country' of 
N.E. by S.\\\ They vary in size and thickness from a mere paper- 
like tissue to several feet. They also apj^ear to be confined to- 
certain definite belts in these schistose rocks. I have noticed what 
appears to be two different belts at least — a lower and a higher one.. 
The difference is one merely of separation I think and not of age- 
Within each belt these quartz leaders seem to vary in number. 
They seem to traverse the gneiss and schist in a direction parallel 
to and along the line of foliation, and are continually narrowing in 
and widening out throughout their course. They are often lenticular. 
They also agree with the other rocks in variability and angle of dip. 
The dip varies from J5 to 84" in a south-easterly, southerly, or 
south-westerly direction. Their outcrop traverses the sides and 
summits of the hills in a most sinuous manner. Where they are 
found cropping out on the summits or edges of hills or ridges, their 
breadth appears to attain the maximum of thickness. They are at 
times found enclosing pieces of schist between them. -J 

At the junction of some of these leaders with the adjoining 
schists and gneiss no distinction can be drawn lietween them and 
the quartz elements in the other rocks. Both are clear and glassy. 
Where, however, they have suffered greatest from metamorphism 
the quartz is more often of a reddish tinge, and their line of contact 
is readily distinguishable. Besides, their lenticles are crushed and 
cracked in various directions and the schists show much sericite 
near the line of contact. There is usually a film of iron oxide 
between the schists and the lenticle of quartz. Furthermore, iron 
oxide and other stainings are apparent in their cracks. 

The same kind of felspar which is so frequently found in the 
earlier pegmatites is also to be found in these ' ' leaders ' ' along their 
entire length at different parts : it is often most sparingly dis- 
tributed. One may follow along a leader for 100 feet and more 
and not see a trace of felspar, but within the next few feet of its 


length some hundreds of crystals may appear. Where they do occur 
they are arranged in the body of the quartz leaders in lines, that 
are separated from each other by quartz, and that are parallel to 
Ihe line of foliation. In these lines each fragment of felspar is 
separated from another by quartz, and they would almost lead 
one to think that they were arranged along lines of fluxion. On 
following up some of the leaders I found one point near Dumisa 
where, within a few feet, the quartz, with but a mere trace of felspar, 
became so impregnated with it that the leader was no longer one of 
quartz, but was converted into a typical pegmatite of the older or 
earlier type. I think, therefore, that there can be no doubt that 
these leaders in the schists have been derived from these ancient 
pegmatite veins. I have also seen portions of these pegmatite 
veins where the quartz was almost entirely absent and the vein 
became one of pure felspar. 

The schists and gneiss are very similarly contorted and plicated. 
The planes of foliations in these rocks follow the sinuosity of the out- 
crops and would appear to have a tendency to contract in synclinal 
and expand in anticlinal folds. Another feature of interest in 
connection with these " leaders " is their auriferous nature. Gold 
has been found at various times, and at various points along their 
length, for years past. Certain portions of the belt would appear 
to be rich. The gold occurs both in the leaders and in the enclosing 
schists. I think that the leaders that now remain in these ancient 
rocks mark the remains of huge anticlinal and synclinal folds into 
which the rocks in the country had been cast from north to south, 
and acquired their present quartzitic nature and relative positions 
through the metamorphic influences and terrestrial disturbances, 
which caused such mechanical deformations in them. 

In passing, I refer to a rather peculiar spectacle. This is the 
occurrence of numerous pits or hollows within limited areas on the 
summits or slopes of hills or in the adjoining valleys. They are 
what are locally termed " Elephant's or Buffaloes Wallows." 
They vary in number within each limited area. Sometimes they 
may be counted in hundreds. They rarely exceed three feet in 
depth. They are usually circular or elliptical in shape though 
irregular shapes are by no means scarce. Their sides slope towards 
the central part at an angle varying from about 35 to 60 degrees. 
The central parts of the hollows usually reveal the subsoil or under- 
lying ro.ks. Now one point of note in this connection is the 
■occurrence of innumerable earth worms within these limited 
areas. These worms seem to confine their haunts to the soil pro- 
duced from these ancient rocks. I have not found them inhabiting 
the areas covered by soil produced from the disintegration of rocks 
of the Table Mountain Sandstone Series. The castings of these 
worms are to be found in myriads covering the ridges between 
and the slo]5es of the " Wallows." Their number seems to be at a 
maximum on the tops of the ridges, but to diminish downwards 
on the slopes until near the central parts of the " Wallow," where 
they are no longer present. \'arious theories have been put forward 
locally as to the origin of these " Wallows." These may be sum- 
marised thus : — (i) They mark the sites where elephants and 


buffaloes used to roll in bye-gone days. (2) They mark the sites 
where natives used to dig for iron ore for the manufacture of their 
weapons. (3) They represent the ancient " gold diggings " of the 
early Australian prospectors in this country. (4) They have been 
produced by percolating waters. After a careful study of the 
" Wallows," I regret that I cannot accept any of these theories for 
they do not appear to be supported by geological facts or evidence. 
In other parts of the Colony, where elephants and buffaloes were 
Icnown to have been more numerous, such " Wallows " are not to 
be found. I may say that it is in the south of the Colony that 
they occur. A careful examination of the underlying strata shows 
that there are no rocks under them from which the natives could 
have obtained iron for their instruments. Nor are there any such 
rocks adjacent to them. Hence it would appear that theories (i) 
and (2) are based principally on historical evidences and traditions 
which are little more than native superstitions. Number (3) has, 
however, some evidence to support it. There are throughout 
these parts of the country certain ancient workings which were no 
doubt made by early " gold seekers." These, however; may be 
classed as perfectly distinct from those that I refer to. There is 
something about them that at once reveals that they are the work 
of man. They are pits or furrows too, but there is a regularity in 
their construction, and they have been made symmetrical. There 
is almost an entire absence of earth worms from their slopes or 
ridges. They are made usually across the outcrops of the leaders 
and not elsewhere. The most convincing proof of all is the fact 
that the ridges between them are made of pieces of rocks taken 
from the quartz leaders and are not sand and clay as in the case of 
the " Wallows." As regards theory (4), I have failed to find any 
trace of evidence to give even a foundation to such a theory. I 
think that these " Wallows " are the work of the earth worms 
alone. Their efforts may have been assisted by surface waters. 
It is true earth worms are to be found in other tracts on the same 
kind of soil, but there are no " Wallows " there. This is due to 
the soil there being beyond the average depth at which " Wallows ■" 
could come into existence and is thus no impediment to the theory 
I now put forward. The earth worms seem to work more in wet 
or moist weather than in dry weather. Wet soil is more suited to 
them for throwing up their " castings." They have a tendency to 
congregate in colonies. When the soil appears to be less than three 
feet in depth the " Wallows " originate through their congregation 
in colonies. They abstract the soil from the ground and make 
their castings above the surface. Owing to the clayey nature of 
the soil these castings though wet when first thrown up soon become 
very dry and hard. Even the most violent winds and heavy rains 
and storms do not interfere with them ; nor do they become defaced 
or washed away. Consequently this action at once gives rise to 
miniature ridges in the sites of the colonies with slight hollows in 
between. The rate of the conversion of the underlying rocks into 
subsoil is very slow. It is considerably slower than the rate of the 
conversion of the subsoil into soil and than the rate of the abstraction 
of the soil from the earth by the earth worms. In course of time 


the surface soil in the hollows, assisted hy surface waters, sinks^ 
down into the subsoil. In this way the difference in height between 
the ridges and bottoms of the hollows is continually taking place. 

This process continues till there is no further soil within the hollows 
and all has been extracted by the worms. These colonies of worms 
in extending their fields of operations seem to keep to tho^e parts 
where the soil is deepest and thus, instead of crossing the hollows, 
they continue along their length until they unite with the adjacent 
colony. Were it not for the clayey nature of the soil the castings 
would be blown or washed away l)y the winds and rains, and the 
level of the soil raised in some places and lowered in others. Thus 
it is that again we have an instance of one of the smallest and 
humblest of Nature's animals creating wonderful changes in the 
Earth's surface. 


K. Sutton, of Kimberley. has recently communicated to the 
Royal Dublin Society some results of his local observations 
regarding the deposition of dew. Those observations contradict 
the common text-book statement that a clear sky is essential 
to the formation of dew. That such a condition will usually 
hasten the commencement of condensation is admitted, but the 
deposition may, in the long run. be as abundant with clouds 
as without them. With an atmosphere near the point of saturation, 
there is little difference in the radiation of heat from the earth's 
surface, whether the sky be clear or cloudy. The author, there- 
fore, concludes that dampness of the air and length of the night 
are the determining factors in the formation of dew rather than 
clearness of the sky. 


In his paper before the Linnean Society on the 4th November, 
Prof. H. H. W. Pearson stated that the floras of Bushmanland, 
Namaqualand, Damaraland. and South Angola exhibit a distinct 
relationship amongst themselves with the exception of the vegetation 
found oii the Huilla Plateau in South Angola. Such differences 
as there are may be accounted for mainly by differences of (i) 
elevation, (2) atmospheric humidity, (3) depth of the permanently 
available supplies of underground water, and (4) geographical 
position. The rainfall, throughout the districts named, is sparse 
and irregular, and the winter is a time of prolonged drought. 
The floras exhibit an affinity with those of the South Central 
African Highlands. Many of the s})ecies of South Angola are 
derived from the coastal and Montane regions of West Tro})ical 
Africa. The vegetation is xerophytic throughout, and marked 
either by a short period of duration, or by the structural peculiarities 
of dry climate perennials. Hairiness is not conspicuous ; suc- 
culence, except in Lower Namaqualand. is not common : the 
leaves are small and simple, with strongly developed cuticle ; 
the root-system dee|i. 

Bv E. C. Chubb, F.Z.S. 

During the last ten years a considerable amount of attention 
has been paid by systematic mammalogists to South Africa and 
a number of valuable papers have been published. The most 
important of these is a series of ten. based upon collections made 
by Mr. C. H. B. Grant in various j^arts of the sub-continent, and 
presented to the British Museum by ]\Ir. C. D. Rudd, while our 
knowledge of the Chrysochlorida' has been greatly augmented by 
Dr. R. Broom's valuable monograph of the family. 

This work has rendered Sclater's \-olumes on " The Mammals 
of South Africa," published in 1901, altogether out-of-date by 
the discovery of a number of new forms, and many names, which 
at that time were regarded as synonyms of others, have been shewn 
to belong to distinct species ; while not a few have been altered 
in order to conform to now recognised rules of nomenclature. 

The object of the present paper is to give a list of the species 
at present known to occur in South Africa, south of the Zambesi 
and Cunene Rivers, with references to the original descriptions 
of all forms not recognised by Sclater. It comprises no less than 
373 species and sub-species, (exclusive of the order Cetacea) which 
is 152 more than the number given in Sclater's work. 

It is true that many of these recently described forms have 
been separated on somewhat slight differences, and many represent 
only local varieties ; but it must be borne in mind that the work 
has been done on large series of excellently prepared material, 
carefully labelled with measurements taken in the flesh, when con- 
stant differences become apparent which would be taken for 
individual variation on single specimens from different localities. 

The following is a list of papers relating to South African 
Mammals that have been published since the issue of Sclater's 
" Mammals of South Africa " : — 

Andersen, K. . . Five new Rhiiiolophi irom Africa. Ann. Mag. Nat. 

Hist. (7), XIV., p. 378 (1904). 
On Hipposiderns caffer, Sund. and its closest allies. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XVII., p. 269 (1906). 
Pterocyou, Rousettus and Microiiysteris. Ann. Mag. 

Nat. Hist. (7), XIX., p. 502 (1907). 
Broom, R On some new species of Chrysochloris. i\nn. Mag. Nat. 

Hist. (7), XIX., p. 262 (1907). 
A Contribution to the knowledge of the Cape Golden- 
Moles. Trans. S. Afr. Phil. Soc, XVIII., p. 283. 
Further oljservations on the ChrysochlorideB. Anu. 

Transvaal Mus., I., p. 14(1908). 
Chubb, E. C. .. A new Rhodesian Hare — Lepits zuliiensis micklemi. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (8), I., p. 467 (1908). 
List of Rhodesian Mammals in the Rhodesia Museum 

collection. Annual Report, Rho. Mus., 1907, p. 

Some little-known South .\frican Mammals recently 
obtained in Rhodesia. Annual Report S.A. Ass. 
for the Adv. of Science, iQoS, p. 170. 



De Wintqn, W. E. 
GouGH, L. H. : . 

Jameson, L. H. . . 


Matschie, p. 
PococK, R. I. 

Rothschild, W, 
Schwann, H. 

Thomas, O. 

Thomas, O. and H. 

Thomas, O. and R. C 

A new shrew from Pondoland — Myosoyex swinnyi. 

Annals Transv. Mus. I., No. 2 (1908) (supplement). 
A new elephant shrew from Johannesburg — Elephan- 

tuliis rupestris jcnnoiom. Annals Transv. Mus. I., 

No. 3, p. 181. (1909.) 
The Mammals of Matabeleland. P.Z.S., 1909, p. 113. 
On Cynictis seloiisi, de Wint. P.Z.S., 1901, p. 2, pi. I. 
On a new species of Rhinolophns from Pondoland. 

Ann. Transv. Mus. I., p. 71. (1908.) 
On a new Hare from the Transvaal. Ann. Mag. Nat. 

Hist. (7), p. 404. (1907.) 
Ears as a race-character in the African Elephant. 

P.Z.S., 1907, p. 380. 
On the sub-species of Giratfa canielopavdalis. P.Z.S., 

1904, I., p. 202. 
Ueber die Abanderungen der Ginsterkatzen (Genetta). 

Verh. V. Internat. Zool. Congress, Berlin, p. i 128, 

Notes upon some African species of the genus Felis. 

P.Z.S., 1907, p. 656. 
A monographic revision of the Monkeys of the genus 

Cercopithecits. P.Z.S.. 1907, p. 677. 
Description of a new Bushbuck. P.Z.S., 1906, p. 091. 
List of Mammals obtained by Messrs. R. B. Woosnam 

and R. E. Dent in Bechuanaland. P.Z.S., iqo6, 

I., p. lOI. 
On Felis ocreata, better known as Felis caligata, and its 

subspecies. Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XIII., p. 

421. (1904-) 
On two new Hares allied to Oryctolagus crassicaudatus. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), X., p. 244. (1902.) 
On some new forms of Otomys. Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. 

(7), X., p. 311. (!90-^-) 
The common Hare of Central Cape Colony. Ann. Mag. 

Nat. Hist. (7), XII., p. 343. (1903.) 
On a remarkable new Hare (Lepiis monticitlavis) from 

Cape Colony. Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XL, p. 

78. (1903.) 
A new jNIungoose (Hcrpestcs riiddi) from Namaqualand. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XII., p. 465. (1903.) 
A new Golden Mole (Aniblysoiinis corricp) from Knysna. 

P.Z.S., 1905, II., p. 57. 
Schwann. On a collection of Mammals from British 

Namaqualand. P.Z.S., 1904, I., p. 171. 
Rudd Exploration of South Africa. 

II. List of Mammals from the Wakkerstroom District, 

South-Eastern Transvaal. P.Z.S., 1905. I., p. 129. 

III. List of the Mammals obtained by Mr. Grant in 
Zululand. P.Z.S., 1905, I., p. 254. 

IV. List of Mammals obtained by ]Mr. Grant at Knysna. 
P.Z.S., 1906. I., p. 159. 

V. List of Mammals obtained by Mr. Grant in N.E. 

Transvaal. P.Z.S., 1906, p. ^j-,. 

VI. List of Mammals obtained by Mr. Cirant in the 
Eastern Transvaal. P.Z.S., 1906, p. 779. 

. Wroughton. VII. List of Mammals obtained by 'Mr. 
Grant at Coguno, Inhambane. P.Z.S., 1907, p. 

VIII. List of Mammals obtained by Mr. Grant at 
Beira. P.Z.S., 1907, p. 774. 

IX. List of jMammals obtained by IMr. Grant on the 
Gorongoza ]\Its., Port. S.E. .Africa. P.Z.S., 1907, 
p. 164. 

X. List of Mammals collected by Mr. Grant near Tette, 

Zambesia. P.Z.S., 1908, p. 535. 


Trouessart, E. L. Description de Mammiferes nouveaux d'Afrique et de 

Madagascar. Bui. ^luseum, Paris, 1906, p. 443. 
Wroughton, R. C. On the various forms of Ayvicanthis pumilio, Spasxm.. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XVI., p. 629. (1905.) 
Notes on the genus Tatera, with descriptions of new 

species. Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XVII., p. 474. 

Notes on the genus Oioniys. Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. {7), 

XVIII., p. 264. (1906.) 
On three new Mammals from South Africa. Ann. Mag. 

Nat. Hist. (7), XX., p. 31. (1907.) 
On the African Mungooses usually referred to the 

Herpestes gracilis group. Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. 

(7), XX., p. no, (1907.) 
Three new African species of Mus. Ann. Mag. Nat. 

Hist. (8), I., p. 255. (1908.) 
List of Mammals collected by Mr. C. F. M. Swynnerton 

in Northern Gazalaud and the Melsetter District 

of Rhodesia. Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (8), I., p. 304. 

New species of Dendvomits and Tatera. Ann. Mag. 

Nat. Hist. (8), III., p. 247. (1909.) 

Family Cercopithecid.?:. 

1. CevcapithecHS labiatiis, Is. Geoff. 

C.R. Acad. Sci., XV., p. 1038. (1842.) 
(' ,, samango of Sclater.) 

2. ,, stairsi niossambicus, Pocock. 

P.Z.S., 1907, p. 705. 

3. ,, albogidaris, Sykes. 

4. ,, , beirensis, Pocock. 

P.Z.S., 1907, p. 701. 

5. ,, pygeryt/ifus. Cuv. 

(C. lalandii, Geoft. which was used as a separate species by 
Sclater has now been shewn to be synonymous with 
C. pygerythrus. See Pocock, P.Z.S., 1907, p. 735.) 

6. ,, pygerythrus rufoviridis, Is. GeoflE. 

C.R. Acad. Sci., XV., p. 1038. (1842.) 

7. Papio porcarius. Bodd. 

8. ,, cynocephaliis. Is. Geoff. 

9. Galago crassicaitdatus. Is. Geoff. 

Ann. Mus., XIX., p. 166. (1812.) 

10. ,, garnetti, Ogilby. 

11. ,, moholi, Smith. 

12. ,, granti, Thos. & Wrought. 

P.Z.S., 1907, p. 286. 

13. ,, mossambicus, Pet. 

14. ,, zultiensis, Elliot. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XX., p. 186. (1Q07.) 


Family Pteropodid.t:. 

15. Epomophorus ivahlbergi, Sund. 

Oefvers. Akad. Forhandl., Stockholm, 1846, p. 118. (1847.) 
( ,, . gajnbiaii'.is of Sclater.) 

16. ,, itni color, Gray. 

Catal. 1870, p. 117. 

17. ,, cryptiirus, Pet. 

18. ,, angolensis. Gray. 

;., , Catal, 1870, p. 125. 


19. Eidolon heltttiii. Kerr. 

Animal Kingd. I., pL i., p. X^'II., 91, Xo. loX. 
(RoHsettus styainineus, of Sclater. ) 

20. Rousettiis leachi, A. Smith. 

Zool. Journ., IV., p. 443. 
( ,, collaris, of Sclater.) 


Family Rhinolophid.^;. 

_2i. Rhinolophus simiilaiov, K. And. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XIV., p. 384. (1904.) 

22. ,, dcnti, Thos. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XIII., p. 386. (1904.) 

23. ,, capensis, Licht. 

24. ,, dayliugi, K. And. 

Ann. Mag. Xat. Hist. (7), XV., p. 21. (1905.) 

25. ,, angitr typicus, K. And. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XIV., p. 380. (1904.) 

26. ,, ,, zulticnsi's, K. And. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XIV., p. 383. (1904.) 

27. ,, ,, .:a)nbcsiciisis, K. And. 

Ann. Mag. Nat, Hist. (7), XIV., p. 383. (1904.) 

28. ,, eiiipitsa, K. And. 

Ann. Mag. Xat. Hist. (7), XIV., p. 378. (1904.) 
Chubb, P.Z.S., 1909, p. 115. 
.29. ,, lobatns. Pet. 

Reise Mosambique Saugeth., p. 41 pi. IX., XIII., fig. 16, 17. 

30. ,, aeiJnops, Pet. 

31. ,, fu'Idebi'nndti, Pet. 

32. ,, swiiniyi, Gough. 

Ann. Trans. Mus., I., No. i, p. 71. (1908.) 

33. Clceotis peycivaU, Thos. 

I Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), VIII., p. 28. (1901.) 

^" Chubb, P.Z.S., IQ09, p. 115. * 

34. Hipposidents caffer, Sund. 

35. ,, coinmersoni, Geoft. 

Family Nycteridid.^. 

36. Petalia capensis, A. Smith. 

37. ,, hispida. Geoff. 

38. ,, thehaica, Geoff. 

Family Vespertilioxid.^. 

39. Vespertilio capensis, A. Smith. 

.40. „ ,, c,racilior, Thos. tt Scliw. 

P.Z.S.. 1905, I., p. 257. 
(F. minutus of Sclater is now considered a synonym 

of V. capensis, see Thomas, P.Z.S., 1905, I., 

p. 257.) 

41. ,, niegahiyus, Temm. 

42. Pipistyelhts nanus. Pet. 

43. ,, knhlii fuscalits, Thos. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), VIII., p. 34. (1901.) 

44. ,, siibtilis, Sund. 

Of V. Akad. Forh. , 1 846, p. 119. 

45. Glauconyctcyis vayiegatus. Tomes. 

{Chalinolobus vayiegatus of Sclater.) 

46. Glauconycteris papilio, Thos. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XV., p. jj. (1905.! 

47. Scotophiliis nisyita, Schreb. 

48. ,, ,, dingani. Pet. 

S. Afr. Journ., 1832, p. 27. 
.49. ,, ,, hereyo, Thos. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XVII., p. 174. (1906.) 



5 39- 

p. 59. (1834. 

■%o. Scotophilns viridis dnmarcnsis, Thos. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XVII., p. 174. <i9o6.) 

51. Scoteinits schliefjeni australis, Thos. iS; Wrought. 

P.Z.S., 1 90S, p 

52. Myotis tricolor, Smuts. 

53. Kerivoula aerosa. Tomes. 
i;4. ,, lanosa. Smith. 

55. Miuioptents schreihersi, Natt. 

56. ,, dnsythrix, Temni. 

Mon. Mamm., II., 1835 

57. ,, natalensis. Smith. 

S..\. Quart. JournL, II., 
,, scoteinits, Sund. of Sclater.) 

.38. ,, iratcrciiUis, Thos. & Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1906, I., p. 162. 

59. Taphozous mauritianus, Geoff. 

60. Nyctinoiuus africanits, Dobs. 

61. ,, aegyptiacits, Geoff. 

62. ,, bocagei, Seabra. 

Jorn. Sc. Lisb.. VI., 1900, p. S2. 

63. Movmopterits ((cetabitlosits, Desm. 
{Nyctiiiomiis acetabidosns of Sclater.) 

64. Chaerephon limbatits. Pet. 
{Nyctinoiuus liinbatiis of Sclater.) 


Family Macroscelidid-^. 

65. Macroscelides proboscideus, Shaw. 

66. ,, melanotis, Ogilby. 

67. Elephantultts riipestris typicus, A. Smith.* 
6S. ,, .. my urns, Thos. vS; Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1906, p. 586. 
-69. ,, ,, janiesoni. Chubb. 

Ann. Trans. Mus., vol. I., Xo. 3, p. 181. (1909.) 

70. ,, iiitiifi, A. Smith. 

71. Nasilio brnchyrhynchus, A. Smith.* 

72. Petrodronins tetradactylus. Pet. 

'/'i. ,, schujanni, Thos. & Wrought. 

P.Z.S., 1907, p. 288. 

Family Erin.\ceid.e. 

74. Erinaceiis frontalis, A. Smith. 

Family Soricid,^. 

75. Crocidura (Pachynra) varilla, Thos. ^ 

76. ,, ,, aratnla, Thos. & Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1906, p. 78 1. 
^7. ,, ,, gracilis, Blainv. 

yi. ,, {Crocidura) flnvesccns typica, Is. Geoff. 

79. ,, ,, ,, flavidula, Thos. & Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1905, I., p. 264. 

80. ,, ,, nuirtensi. Dobs 

81. ,, ,, pilosa, Dobs. 

82. ,, ,, silacea. Thos. 

83. ,, ,, inariqucnsis, A. Smith. 

84. ,, ,, cyanea, Duv. 
%i.. ,, ,, argeutata, Sund. 

86. ;, ,, desert i, Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1906, I., p. 103. 

87. ,, ,, Sylvia, Thos. & Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1906, p. 587. 

* Thomas and Schwann, P.Z.S., 1906, p. 577. 























JMyosorex variiis 


Thos. A Schw. 
1905, I., p. 131. 
Thos. & Schw. 
1905, I., p. 263. 
, Thos. Sc Schw. 

p. 266. 
. P- 265. 
p. 263. 
p. 292. 

P.Z.S., 1905, I., p. 263. 
tenuis, Thos. & Schw. 
P.Z.S., 1905, I., p. 131. 
swinnyi. Chubb. 
Ann. Trans. Mus., voL I., No. 2 (supplement). 

Family Chrysochloridje. 
Chrysospalax villosa, A. Smith.* 
„ trevelyani, Giinth. 

Chrysochloris asiatica, Linn. 
( ,, aurea of Sclater.) 

wintoni. Broom. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XIX., p.264. 
,, namaquensis, Broom. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XIX 
^ranti. Broom. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XIX. 
sclateri. Broom. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XIX., 
ditthicp. Broom. 

Trans. S.Alr. Phil. Soc, XVIII., 
damarensis, Ogilby. 
,, ginniiiigi, Broom. 

Ann. Trans. Mus., I., p. 14. (1908.) 
Amhlysomus hotteutoftus. A. Smith. f 

longheps, Broom. 
Trans. S.Afr. Phil. Soc 
,, „ albifrons. Broom. 

Trans. S.Afr. Phil. Soc, XVIII 
,, ,, iris, Thos. & Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1905, I., p. 259. 
,, ,, pondolice, Thos. & Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1905, I., p. 260. 
„ „ corrice, Thos. 

P.Z.S., 1905, II., p. 57. 
, ,, albirostris,% Wagn. 

, tenuis, Broom. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XIX., p. 267. 
Chrysotricha obtusirostris typica, Pet.§ 

„ „ chrysilla, Thos. & Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1905, I., p. 261. 



Division .ELUROIDEA. 

Family Felid.5. 
Felis leo, Linn. 

pardus, Linn. 
,, serval, Erxl. 
nigripes, Burch. 
ocreata cafra, Desm. 
( ,, caff r a of Sclater.) 
,, caracal, Guld. 




XVIII., p. 299. (1907.) 
p. 302.(1907.) 


* Thomas and Schwann, P.Z.S., 1906, p. 163. 

t Cope, Amer. Nat., XXVL, p. 127. (1892.) 

% See Broom, Ann. Trans. Mus., I., p. 15. (1908.) 

§ Broom. Trans. S.A. Phil. Soc, XVIII., p. 303. (1907.) 


Family Viverrid^. 

121. Viverra civetta, Schreb. 

122. Genetta tigrina, Schreb. 

123. ,, felina, Thunb. 

124. ,, ludia, Thos. & Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1906, p. 579. 
( ,. senegalensis of Sclater.) 

125. ,, rubiginosa, Puch. 

( ,, letabcB, Thos. & Schw., P.Z.S., 1906, p. 578.) 

126. Mungos cafer, GmeL* 
(Herpestes of Sclater.) 

127. M-itngos cauui, A. Smith. 

App. Rep. Ex. C.A., p. 42. (1836.) 
{Herpestes gracilis of Sclater.) 

128. Mungos ratlamuchi, A. Smith. 

App. Rep. Ex. C.A., p. 42. (1836.) 
{Herpestes gracilis hadins of Sclater.) 

129. Mungos auratus, Thos. & Wrought. 

P.Z.S., 1908. p. 543- 

130. ,, paludinosus typicus, G. Cuv. 

Rdgne Anim., ed. 2, I., p. 158. {1S29.) 
{Herpestes galera of Sclater.) 

131. Mungos paludinosus ruhellus, Thos. & Wrought. 

P.Z.S., 1908, p. 166. 

132. ,, pulverulentus, Wagn. 

133. ,, punctatissimiis, Temm. 

134. ,, grandis, Thos. 

135. ,, albicauda, Cuv. 

136. ,, ruddi, Thos. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XII., p. 465. (1903.) 

137. Helogale parvula, Sund. 

138. ,, brunnida, Thos. & Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1906, p. 581. 

139. Rhynchogale melleri, Gray. 

140. Crossarchns fasciatus typicus, Desm. 

141. ,, ,, senescens, Thos. & Wrought. 

P.Z.S., 1907, p. 291. 

142. Cynictis penicillata typica, Cuv. 

143. ,, ,, intensa, Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1906, I., p, 104. 

144. „ ,, steedmanni, Ogil. 

P.Z.S., 1833, p. 49. 

145. ,, ,, ogilbyi, A. Smith. 

S.Afr. Quart. Journ., II., p. 117. (1834.) 

146. ,, ,, pallidior, Thos. & Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1904, I., p. 175. 

147. „ ,, leptura. Smith. 

111. S.Afr. Zool. Mamm., pi. XVII. (1S39.) 

148. ,, selousi, de Wint. 

149. Bdeogale crassicaiida. Pet. 

Reis. Moss. Saug., 1852, p. 119. 
P.Z.S., 1908, p. 168. 

150. Suricata suricatta typica, Erxl. 

151. ,, ,, namaqueiisis, Thos. & Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1905, I., p. 134. 

152. ,, ,, hamiltoni, Thos. & Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1905, I., p. 134. 

153. ,, ,, lophttrus, Thos. & Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1905, I., p. 133. 

Family Protelid^. 

154. Proteles cristatus, Sparrm. 

* E. Geoff. Sc G. Cuv., Mag. EncycL II., pp. 184-187. (1795.) 


Family Hyaexid.?:. ■. [ 

155. Hycena brumiea, Thunb. 

156. ,. crocuta, ErxL 

Division CYNOIDEA. 
Family Caxid.e. 

157. Canis mesomelas, Schreb. 

158. ,, adustus, Sund. 

159. Vulpes chama, A. Smith. 

160. Otocyon megalotis, Desm. 

161. Lycaon pictus venaticus, Burch.* 

162. ,, ,, zuluensis, Thos. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XIV., p. 98 (footnote).V (1904.) 

Division ARCTOIDEA. 
Family Mustelid.e. 

163. Aonyx capensis, Schinz. 
{Liitra of Sclater.) 

164. Lutra maculicolJis, Licht. 

165. Mellivora ratel, Sparr. 

166. Ictonyx capensis, Kaup. 

)►«- * {Zorilla striata of Sclater.) 

167. Pcecilogale albiintcha, Gray. 

Suborder PINNEPEDI.l. 
Family Otariid.e. 

168. Arctocephahts pitsillus, Schreb. 




Family Sciurid.e. 

169. Geosciurus capensis, Kerr.t 
(Xerus of Sclater.) 

170. Paraxerus cepapi typica, \. Smith. 

lyi, ,, ,, sindi, Thos. & Wrought. 

P.Z.S., 1908, p. 543. 

172. ,, sponsus, Thos. & Wrought. 

P.Z.S., 1907, p. 292. 

173. ,, paUiatus typicus. Pet. 

174. ,, ,, ornatus. Gray. 

P.Z.S., 1864, p. 13, pi. I. 

175. ,, ,, swyiinertoni, Wrought. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (8), I., p. 305. (1908.) 

176. Heliosciurus mutabilis. Pet. 

177. Funisciurus congictis, Kuhl. 

Division MYOMORPHA. 
Family Glirid.e. 

178. Graphiiir us ocularis, A. Smith. 

179. ,, murintis, Desm. 

180. ,, platyops, Thos. 

181. ,, nanus, de Wint. 

182. ,, helleni, Ren v. 

183. ,, griselda, Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1906, I., p. 105. 

* See Thomas, Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XIV., p. 99 (footnote). (1904.) 
tSee Thomas, Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (8), III., p. 467. (1909.) 


Family Murid.^i. 
Subfamily Gerbillince. 

184. Geyhillus pceba iypiciis, A. Smith. 

185. ,. ,, schiini, Xoack. 

Zool. Jahrb., IV., p. 134, pi. III., figs. 13-16. (1889.) 

1 86. Tatera ytiddi, Wrought. 

Ami. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XVII., p. 478. (1906.) 

187. ,, draco. Wrought. 

.\nn. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XVII., p. 479. (1906.) 

188. ,, hrantsi, A. Smith. 
389. ,, afva, Gray. 

190. ,, inclusa, Thos. lS: \^'rought. 

P.Z.S., 1908, p. 169. 

191. ,, loben^ula typica, de Wint. 

192. ., ,, hechuancB, Wrought. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XVII., p. 482. (1906.) 

193. ,, ,, gviqucB, Wrought. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XVII., p. 483. (1906.) 

194. ,, ,, inashoncs, Wrought. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XVII., p. 483. (1906.) 

195. ,, tuiliaria typica, Wrought. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XVIL, p. 484. (1906.) 

196. ,,'5 ,. stellcs. Wrought. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XVIL, p. 485. (1906.) 

197. ,, 1^., salsa. Wrought. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XVIL, p. 485. (1906.) 

198. ,, panja. Wrought. 

Ann. .Mag. Xat. Hist. [7). XVIL, p. 486. (1906.) 
,199. Desmodillus aiiyiciilaris, A. Smith.* 

(Pachyiiromys aiiricidaris of Sclater. ) 

Subfamily OtomyincB. 

200. Otoniys irroratits typicits. Brants. 

201. ,, ,, tropicalis, Thos. 

Ann. 'Slag. Nat. Hist. (7), X., p. 314. (1902.) 
.202. ,, ,, aiiyatits, Wrought. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XVIIL, p. 272. (1906.) 
203. ,, ,, ciipreus, Wrought. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XVIIL, p. 273. (1906.) 
.204. ,, laiiiiiiafiis, Thos. & Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1905, I., p. 267. 

205. ,, unisulcatus typicus, F. Guv. 

206. ,, ,, grantii, Thos. 

Ann. :\Iag. Nat. Hist. (7), X., p. 312. (1902.) 

207. ,, sloggctti, Thos. 

s( Ann. ]Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), X., p. 311. (1902.) 

208. , bvoonii, Thos. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), X., p. 313. (1902.) 

209. ,, brant si, A. Smith. 

210. ,, turncri. Wrought. 

Ann.*Mag. X'at. Hist. (7), XX., p. 31. (1907.) 

Subfamily DendromyincB. 

211. Dciidroiiiys piiiiiilio, Wagn. 

212. ,, jamesoni. Wrought. 

.Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (8), III., p. 247. (1909.) 

213. ,, iiigrifrons. True. 

Proc. U.S. Nat. Mns., XV., 1892, p. 462, fig. 2. 

214. ,, mcsomelas. Brants. 

215. ,, melanotis, A. Smith. 

216. Steatotnys prcdensis. Pet. 

217. Malacothrtx typicus, A. Smith. 

2 1 8. ,, pentonyx, W. Scl. 

Se? Th';s. & Schw., P.Z.S., 1904, I., p. 177. 


Subfamily Murines. 

219. Mus rattus, Linn. 

220. ,, norvegicits, ErxL 

( ,, decumanus of Sclater.) 

221. ,, nigricauda, Thos. 

222. ,, chrysophilits typicus, de Wint. 

223. ,, ,, ineptus, Thos. & Wrought. 

P.Z.S., 1908, p. 546. 

224. ,, ,, acticola, Thos. & Wrought. 

P.Z.S., 1908, p. 547. 

225. ,, namaqiievsis typicus, A. Smith. 

226. ,, ,, centralis, Schw. 

( ,, auricomis centralis, Schw., P.Z.S., 1906, I., p. 108.) 

227. ,, namaquensis lehocla, A. Smith. 
( ,, lehocla of Sclater.) 

228. ,, namaquensis auricomis, de Wint. 
( ,, auricomis of Sclater.) 

Mus arborarius, Pet. belongs to this group and is either synony- 
mous with Mus namaquensis auricomis or represents another 
local form — Mus namaquensis arborarius, Pet. 

229. ,, damarensis, de Wint. 

230. ,, granti. Wrought. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (8), I., p. 257. 

231. ,, dolichurus. Smuts. 

232. ,, verreauxi, A. Smith. 

233. ,, pcediilcus, Sund. 

234. ,, colonus, Brants. 

235. ,, coucha typicus, A. Smith. 

236. ,, ,, zuhteusis, Thos. & Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1905, I., p. 268. 
[This subspecies will probably prove to be a synonj'm of the 
following species — Mtts microdon, Pet. ] 

237. ,, microdon, Pet. 

238. ,, musculus, Linn. 

239. ,, woosnami, Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1906, I., p. 108. 

240. ,, caffer, A. Smith. 

241. ,, muscardinus, Wagn. 

242. ,, avarillus, Thos. & Wrought. 

P.Z.S., 1908, p. 547. 

243. Thamnomys comefes, Thos. & W^rought. 

P.Z.S., 1908, p. 549. 

244. ,, ruddi, Thos. & Wrought. 

P.Z.S., 1908, p. 549. 

245. Leggada minutoides, A. Smith. 
{Mus minutoides of Sclater.) 

246. Cricefomys gamhianus adventor, Thos. & Wrought. 

P.Z.S., 1907, p. 295. 

247. ,, ,, cunctator, Thos. & Wrought. 

P.Z.S., 1908, p. 171. 

248. Saccostomus campestris. Pet. 

249. ,, mashonce, de Wint. 

250. ,, hildcB, Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1906, I., p. no. 

251. ,, anderssoni, de Wint. 

252. ,, fitsctis, Pet. 

253. Acomys subspinosus, Waterh. 

254. ,, selousi, de Wint. 

255. Dasyntys incomtus typicus. Sund. 

256. ,, ,, fusciis, dc Wint. 

P.Z.S., 1896, IL, p. 804. 

257. Arvicanthis dorsalis typicus, A. Smith. 

258. ,, ,, calidior, Thos. & Wrought. 

P.Z.S., 1908, p.545. 

259. ,, pumilio typicus, Sparr. 



260. Arvicanthis pumiliobechuauce, Thos. 

261. ,, ,, cinereus, Thos. & Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1903, II., p. 336. 

262. ,. ,, meridionalis, Wrought. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XVI., p. 632 

263. „ ,, griqiKS, Wrought. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XVI., p. 632 

264. ,, ,, intermedins. Wrought. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XVI., p. 635 

265. ,, ,, chahcs. Wrought. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XVI., p. 636 

266. ,, ,, dilectus, de Wint. 

267. ,, ,, moshesh, Wrought. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XVI., p. 638 

268. Peloniys fallax, Pet. 
{Golunda fallax of Sclater.) 

Subfamily CricetincP. 

269. Mystromys albicaudatus typicus, A. Smith. 

270. ,, ,, fumosiis, Thos. & Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1905, I., p. 137. 

271. ,, albipes, Wagn. 

Familj^ Bathyergid.s:. 

272. Bathyergus suillus, Schreb. 

., Saugeth., IV., p. 715, pi. CCIV.B. (1792.) 

( ,, mahtimus of Sclater.) 

273. ,, janetta, Thos. & Schw. 
i|j P.Z.S., 1904, I., p. 180. 

274. Georychus capeiisis typicus, Pall. 

275. ,, ,, canescens, Thos. & Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1906, I., p. 165. 

276. ,, damarensis, Ogil. 

277. ,, darlingi, Thos. 

27?!. ,, hottentottits typicus. Less. 

279. ,, ,, talpoides, Thos. & Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1906, I., p. 166. 

280. ,, nimrodi, de Wint. 

281. ,, lugardi, de Wint. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), I., p. 253. (1898.) 

282. ,, beir(B, Thos. & Wrought. 

P.Z.S., 1907, p. 780. 

Family PEDEriD.E. 

283. Pedetes caffev typica. Pall. 

284. ,, ,, orangice. Wrought. 

Ann." Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XX., p. ^2. (1907.) 

285. „ ,, salines. Wrought. 

fAnn. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XX-, p. t,t,. (1907.) 

Family Octodontid.^. 

286. Petromys typicus, A. Smith. 

287. Thryonomys swi)ideyenianus, Temm. 

Family Hystricid.e. 

288. Hystrix africce-austvalis, Pet. 

Family LEPORiD.t. 

289. Lepus capensis typicus, Linn. 

290. ,, „ centralis, Thos. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), XII., p. 344."" (1903.) 




291. Lepns capensis i;ra)iti, Thos. & Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1904, I., p. 182. 

292. ,, ,, aqiiilo, Thos. Sc Wrought. 

P.Z.S., 1907, p. 297. 

293. ,, saxatilis typiciis, Cuv. 

294. ,, • ,, megalotis, Thos. & Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1905, I., p. 271. 

295. ,, zulttensis typiciis, Thos. A: Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1905, I., p. 270. 

296. ,, ,, viicklrmi. Chulih. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (,S), I., p. ,/,6. (1908.) 

297. ,, month iilai'is, Thos. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7). XL, p. 78. (19^1^) 

298. ,, ochropus, Wagn. 

Schreb. Saiigeth., suppL IV., p. 96. (1844.) 

299. Pronolagus crnssicaitdatits typiciis, GeolT. 

300. „ ,, citrryi, Thos. 

.\nn. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7). X., p. 245. (1902.) 
301- .. ,, melamiriis, Riipp. 

302. ,, ,, randensis, Jameson. 

.Ann. IMag. Nat. Hist. {7), XX., p. 404. (1907.) 
ZO'^. „ riiddi, Thos. & Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1905, I., p. 272. 

Order UNGUL.'^TA. 

Suborder ARTIOD.\CTYLA. 

Division PECORA. 

Family Bovid.t;. 

Subfamily Bubalince. 

304. Bubalis caama. Cuv. 

305. ,, lichtensteiui. Pet. 

306. Danialiscus pygargiis . Pa!L 

307. ,, albifrons, Burch. 

308. „ lunatus, Burcli. 

309. Connochcetes gnu, H. Smith. 

310. ,, tniiriiiiis. Burcli. 

Suh family Ccplia'ttpliimi . 

311. Cephalophits gyiiuini, Linn. 

312. ,, nataleusis, A. Smith. 

313. ,, ,, vassei, Trouessart. 

Bui. ]Mus. Par., 1906, p. 445. 

314. ,, luoiiticola, Thunli. 

315. ,, Jiecki, Matschie. 

S.-B. Ges. Nat. Fr., 1897, PP-' 57-158. 

316. ,, robertsi. Roths. 

P.Z.S., 1906, p. 691. 

Subfamily Neotragincp. 

317. Oreotragus oreotragiis, Zimm. 

318. Ourebia scoparia, Schreb. 

319. Raphicerus campestris, Thunb. 

320. ,, neitmaiini capriconiis, Thos. cV Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1906, p. 584. 

321. ,, shaypei colonicits, Thos. ^ Schw. 

P.Z.S., 1906, p. 583. 

322. „ Jiorstocki nataleusis, Rothschild. 

P.Z.S.. 1907, p. 237. 

323. Nototragus melanotis, Thunb.* 
{Raphicerus melanotis of Sclater.) 

324. Nesotragiis livingstonianiis. Kirk. 

325. ,, zuluensis, Thos. 

Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (7), H. (1898.) 

326. Madoqua damnrensis, Gunth. 

* See Thomas and Schwann, P.Z.S., 1906, p. 168. 


Subfamily Cervicaprince. 

327. Kobiis ellipsipryiniiiis. Ogilby. 

328. ,, leche, Gra3'. 

329. ,. vardoni, Livingstone. 

330. Cervicapra nntiidiniiw, Bocld. 

331. ,, fulvorufitla. Atzel. 

332. ,, ,, siibalbiiui. Kirby. 

[It is very donbtlul whether this is a distinct subspecies.] 

333. Pclea caprroliis. Bechst. 

Sublaniib," .1 iitili>pnuf . 

334. Aepycerus melampits, Licht. 

335. ,, petcrsi, Boc. 

336. Autidoycas citchore, Zimm. 

Siil)!amily Hippotvai^iiirF. 

337. Hippotragiis leiicopJueiis. Pall. 

338. ,, equinus. Desm. 

339. ,, niger, Harris. 

340. Oyyx i^a.:c!l(i, Linn. 

Subfamily Tvti^^claphiitcp. 

341. Trat^ilap/tiis scripfiis typiats. Pall. 


sylvaticus, Sparr. 
roitaleyiii. Gordon-Cumming. 
angasi, Angas. 
seloitsi. Roths. 
Strepsiceyos styepsiceyos, Pall. 
( ,, capensis of Sclater. ) 

Taiiyotragiis oryx typicits, Pall. 

,, livitigstnnii, Scl. 

Subfamily Boviikp. 

349. Bos caffer, Sparr. 

Family Giraffid.t;. 

350. Giyaffa capensis. Less. 

351. ,, capensis waydi, Lydekker. 

P.Z.S., 1904, L, p. 221. 

Division SUINA. 
Family Hippopotamid.^i. 

352. Hippopotamus anip/iibiiis, Linn. 

Family Suid.'e. 

353. Potamochcents chceyopotaniits typicits, Alaj. 
3';4. ,, ,, nyaser, Maj. 

P.Z.S., 1897, P- l>(-'7- 

355. PhacochceyKs cBthiopicus, Pall. 


Family Eouid.^;. 

356. F.qiius zebra, Linn. 

357. ,, burchelli typicits. Gray. 

358. ,, ,, antiqitoyitni, H. Smith. 

359. ,, ,, tyansvaaleiisis, Ewart. 

360. ,, ,, waJilbeygi, Pocock. 

361. ,, „ chapmanni, Layard. 

362. ,, ,, seloitsi, Pocock. 

363. ,, ,, cyaivshayi, de W'int. 

Family Rhinocerotid.t;. 

364. Rhinoceros siiniis, Burch. 

365. ,, bicoynis, Linn. 


Family Procaviid.^. 

366. Procavia capensis, PalL 

367. ,, arborea. Smith. 

368. ,, brucei. Gray. 


369. Elephas africanus, Blumen. 

370. ,, ,, toxotis, Lydekker. 

P.Z.S., 1907, p. 395. 

371. ,, ,, selonsi, Lydekker. 

P.Z.S, 1907, p. 395. 

Family I\Ianid.^. 

372. Mams temmincki, Smuts. 


373. Orycteropits afey, Pall. 

■of the Mineralogical Society, London, held on the 16th 
November, Dr. G. T. Prior communicated some particulars re- 
specting fragments of a meteoric stone which had been discovered 
two years previously near Simondium Railway Station, on the 
Paarl-French Hoek line, Cape Colony. The largest fragment 
did not exceed one foot in diameter. Smaller pieces of the 
meteorite had been presented to the British Museum. They 
belong to the less common class of aerolites which show no chon- 
dritic structure. The components of the stone were found to be 
enstatite, olivine, and felspar, together with some troilite, mag- 
netite, and nickel-iron, the last named of which had been assumed 
to be native silver by the prospectors who discovered the meteorite. 


Dr. C. V. Burton recently discussed before the Phj'sical Society 
the possibility of determining the motion of the Solar System., 
relatively to the Ether, from observations of the eclipses of 
Jupiter's satellites — a possibility which had been indicated by 
■Clerk- Maxwell more than thirty years ago. Assuming, for 
convenience, that the sun is stationary, the motion of the ether, 
relatively thereto, may be said to partake of the nature of 
a wind. Under such circumstances, the light-waves, which 
bring us tidings of a Jovian lunar eclipse, will, it is considered, 
travel earthwards more rapidly when Jupiter's system is to wind- 
ward of the earth than when it is to leeward. The residual dis- 
crepancies between the observed and calculated times of the 
eclipses would afford a means of measuring the velocity of this 
ether " wind," that is, would, after proper allowance and correction 
for systematic differences, gives values for the components of the 
sun's velocity with respect to the ether. As material capable 
of forming a basis of calculation attention is drawn to Prof. 
Sampson's discussion of the Harvard photometric eclipse ob- 
servations, including over 330 eclipses of Jupiter's satellite I. 


By Prof.- S. I. Bailey. 

The search for an ideal site for an Astronomical Observatory 
has been long, and cannot yet be regarded as definitely com- 
pleted. Indeed, the ideal locality probably does not exist. 
Nevertheless, the most favourable site which our planet furnishes 
must, sooner or later, be sought and found. The importance of 
a suitable locality can hardly be over estimated. It is of equal, 
if uol of greater, importance than increase in the size of telescopes. 
In the past, Observatories have generally been i:)laced near large 
towns, irrespective of the local climatic conditions, since the Gov- 
ernments or LTniversities which founded them were so situated. 
In the future, for their most defined results, astronomers must go 
or send to localities where the best atmospheric conditions prevail. 
The majority of astronomers, however, will have no need to thus 
expatriate themselves, since, in many cases, photographs better 
suited to their researches than any visual observations they them- 
selves could make, could be taken and sent to them. It was 
on this account some years ago that Professor E. C. Pickering, 
Director of the Harvard Observatory, advanced the idea of an 
International Observatory placed in the world's most favourable 
region, whose chief duty it would be to. make photographs for 
those astronomers of different nations, whose rank and abilities 
entitled them to receive them. 

The first requisite for an astronomical station is a clear sky, 
free from cloud, haze, smoke and dust. Since no locality is en- 
tirely free from clouds, it is desirable that those clouds which do 
occur should be distributed fairly evenly throughout the year, 
rather than condensed into one decidedly " cloud}' season," a 
condition which prevails in many countries. There are, more- 
over, several other requirements, chief of which is steadiness of 
the air. Visually, a steady atmosphere gives good " seeing," 
and photographically fine definition and detail. With bad 
atmospheric conditions a large telescope is often of no greater 
value than a small one. Various other considerations enter into 
the problem. An ideal locality would have freedom from strong 
winds, especially at night, a small annual and diurnal range of 
temperature, low humidity, a reasonable altitude, accessibility, 
together with the necessities and some of the comforts of modern 
life. For the present purpose also a station is desired sufficiently 
far South of the Equator that the entire Southern sky may be 
studied to the l)est advantage. 

In 1887 the Harvard Observatory received a fund, left by the 
late Uriah A. Boyden, of Boston, for the establishment of an 
observing station at an altitude where the atmospheric conditions 
would be favourable to astronomical investigation. After numer- 
ous trials of different locations in Colorado, California, Chili and 
Peru, the proposed station was estafilished near Arequipa, Peru, 


at an altitude of 8,000 feet. This station has now been in opera- 
tion for nearly twenty years and has given admirable results. In 
view, however, of the possible extension of the work and the ex- 
penditure of large sums for greater instruments by this Observa- 
tory, or others, it seemed desirable to learn whether South Africa 
offered greater attractions for astronomical work than South 
America. The high plateau of South Africa had been recommended 
by Sir David Gill, Sir William Morris and other eminent scientific 
men. Accordingly, the director of the Harvard Observatory 
requested the writer, who had made the investigations which 
led to the selection of Arequipa, to make a simikr study of the 
climate of South Africa. The investigation has now been going 
on for nearly a year. Special studie . have been made at Bloem- 
fontein, Hanover, C.C, and atWorcester, and various other localities 
have been examined. Whilst there is no doubt that South Africa 
offers many sites where the conditions are extremely good, it is 
too early to draw more definite conclusions. A detailed report 
will be published later. Special thanks are due to H.E. Sir Walter 
Hely-Hutchinson, Governor of the Cape Colony, for active interest 
and assistance, as well as to H.E. Sir Hamilton Goold-Adams. 
Governor of the Orange River Colony, to the officials of the British 
South Africa Company and to other distmguished gentlemen. 
For active assistance in the scientific observations involved, 
thanks are due to James Lyle, Esq., of Bloemfontein, R. T. A. 
Innes, Esq., of Johannesburg, Father E. Goetz, S.J., of Bulawayo^ 
I. Meiring, Esq., of Worcester, and others. 

PERSONALIA.— A paper by Dr. T. Muu". F.R.S.. Super- 
intendent-General of Education, Cape Colony, on the theory of 
orthogonants in the historical order of development up to i860, 
was communicated to the Royal Society of Edinburgh at its 
November meeting. 

Prof. R. Broom, M.D.. D.Sc, has resigned the chair of Zoology 
and Geologv at Victoria College, Stellenbosch. It is understood 
that he intends resuming medical practice. 

" A class of integral functions " was the subject of a paper 
recently communicated by Mr. J. E. Littlewood at the Cambridge 
Philosophical Society. Mr. Littlewood will be remembered 
by many in South Africa as the son of Mr. E. T. Littlewood, M.A., 
B.Sc, Principal of the Wynberg Boys' High School : after matri- 
culating in the University of the Cape of Good Hope in 1899, 
he proceeded to Cambridge, where he subsequently became Senior 

At the November meeting of the Chemical, ^Metallurgical and 
Mining Society of South Africa, Johannesburg, the" Consolidated 
Gold Fields of South Africa " Gold Medal, awarded by the In- 
stitution of Mining and Metallurgy, was presented to Mr. W. 
A. Caldecott, B.A., F.C.S., M.I.M.M.. m recognition of his work 
in the investigation of methods of reduction and treatment of 
gold, and in appreciation of his contributions to the literature 
on the subject. 



By J. DE Fextox. F.R.A.S. 


At no time in the history of knowledge was specidlisiii^ carried 
on to a greater extent than it is to-day : and yet I will venture 
to say that if there is one fact which more than another strikes 
the observant student, it is that the day of the " one-line " man 
in science is gone for ever. For such is the inter-relationship 
of the different branches of knowledge, due in great part to the 
wonderful discoveries of the latter half of the last century, that 
to adequately pursue even one line of study, a wide range of — 
to the outsider — extraneous knowledge must be covered. - Thus 
to the up-to-date medical man cheniistry, physics and electricity 
are a suie qua iwn. 

Least of all can the astronomer of to-day afford to remain simply 
astronomer and mathematician. For the very existence of his 
claim to the title, he needs must be conversant with chemistry 
and jTiysics. electricity and spectroscopy, photography and 
meteorology, geology and paktontology : and he will find it 
to his advantage to know something of mechanics and engineering 
a'so. From every field of human endeavour the astronomer 
chooses the weapons with which to attack the enigma of the skies. 
In fact, astronomy is the one branch of science which calls all 
others its handmaidens. 

Were this better understood and put in practice, were more 
of those interested in astronomical pursuits equipped with an 
all-round knowledge, we might perhaps not see such disbelief 
or at least unwilling adherence, expressed in facts which are, 
after all. but simple and inevitable consequences of natural phy- 
sical and chemical laws. 

I refer more especially to the question of the presence of water 
vapour in the atmosphere of Mars. 

Owing to the practical absence of an atmosphere on the Moon, 
we are enabled to make use of our satellite as though it were a 
mirror, to reflect the spectrum of the Earth ; so that if a planet 
and the Moon are compared spectroscopically under analogous 
conditions, any outstanding difference in the two spectra can 
be definitely ascribed to the planet. That owing to various causes, 
chief among which is the small quantity of light emitted by the 
planet, comparison is a matter of extreme delicacy, is at once 

The 1,100 odd spectroscopic lines denoting the presence of 
aqueous vapour have been divided by Thollon into seven groups, 
extending from wave-length 745 in the extreme red to wave- 


length 542 at the other end of the spectrum. Of, these seven 
groups, the two from wave-length 660 to 646, around Ho, and 
597 to 585 around D have until now been the most conspicuous, 
though the lines around B and a in the red are easily seen. A 
great difftculty in the way has been the fact that, owing to the 
weakness of the Hght reflected from the planets, the dispersion 
employed could be but small, and thus the individual lines due 
to the planet's atmosphere are in danger of becoming mixed up, 
not only with one another, but occasionally with the metallic 
lines due to the sun's light. Particularly is this the case with 
regard to wave-lengths 548 to 542. 

Although, as I shall mention later, many eminent observers 
were satisfied that they had proved the existence of water vapour 
on Mars, the intrinsic difficulties inherent in the investigation were 
so great that grave doubts were expressed as to the accuracy 
of the results announced, and it was very desirable for the sup- 
porters of the theory that the matter be rendered indisputable 
and indubitable. With the larger amount of light collected 
by the modern giant telescopes, it became practicable to use a 
greater number of prisms thus giving to the planet's light a larger 
dispersion than hitherto. Then Lowell conceived the idea of 
photographing the spectrum of Mars, the photographic plate 
■causing the fugitive and faint impressions received b}' the eye 
to accumulate on a permanent record. This method has further 
the distinct advantage of allowing a leisurely and more accurate 
verification and check of the results to be obtained. V. ]M. Slipher, 
who is in charge of the photographic department at Flagstaff 
Observatory, by rendering the photographic plates sensitive far 
into the red, was enabled to obtain definite proof of the existence 
•of water vapour in the atmosphere of the planet,* And the 
photographs obtained by this process are so very clear and definite 
that F. A. Very was enabled to make quantitative measurements, 
and the results of the comparisons, repeated many times and 
in different orders, show that the water vapour bands at " a " 
in the Martian spectrum are 22 per cent, stronger than in our 
■own atmosphere. 

Now what I want to point out is that while many astronomers 
liave contended that there could not be water vapour on ^Nlarsf 
a simple application of the law of gravitation and of the kinetic 
theory of gases would have sufficed to demonstrate at least the 
possibility of the existence of water vapour in the Martian at- 
mosphere, and in large quantities. 

I have several times in lectures dwelt on tliis point, and have 
always maintained the conviction, based on the arguments referred 
to above, that water vapour must of necessity be present in Mars 
.and in large quantities, and the spectroscope has once more 
vindicated this point of view. 

* Astronomische Nachrichten, Band 179, Nr. 4290. 

t e.g., Johnstone Stoney, Atmospheres upon Planets and SateUites, Scien- 
.tilic Transactions of the Royal Duljlin Society, November, 1897 ; Seward, 
Fortuightly Reviciv, Augu-;t, 1907 ; C. Lane Poor, The Solar System. London, 

\vater|^vapour ox mars. 147 

The presence of water vapour near " a " in the red end of the 
spectrum of Mars was demonstrated by Huggins and Miller as 
early as 1864,* by Father Secchi in 1869.! by Janssen in 1867,$ 
and finally by Vogel in 1872-3, § a quotation from whose work 
reads almost identically with Lowell's recent report : 

" We may conclude with certainty that JNIars possesses an atmosphere 
which in composition does not differ essentially from our own, and which 

is particularly rich in the vapour of water." 

Campbell, however, in 1894 and 1896. failed with the giant 
Lick telescope and the perfected spectroscope at his disposal, 
to find water vapour in Mars|| ; Keeler at, the same Observatory, 
was equally unsuccessful^ ; while Jewel, of Johns Hopkins 
University, maintains that the presence of water vapour could only 
be perceived with the present appliances if the atmosphere of 
Mars were much richer in water vapour than that of the Earth : 
which, as the Flagstaff report shows, is the case.** 

The presence of water vapour was re-affirmed in 1895 and i8g6, 
by Janssen, in reply to Campbell tf ; by Huggins, also in reply to 
CampbellJJ ; by Vogel, in i894§§ ; by Scheiner and Wilsing, in 
18941111 ; who find that the so-called " telluric " lines show far 
more distinctly in the spectrum of Mars than in that of the Moon. 

I will now endeavour to show, in as few words as possible, how 
the presence of water vapour in Mars can be concluded, 
(i) From the principle of gravitation, 
(2) From the kinetic theory of gases. 

(i) One effect of the law of gravitation is that the density of 
the atmosphere is directly related to the gravitational pull ; and 
this pull at the centre of Mars is but 38 of that of the Earth, 
giving an atmosphere about -14 of the density of that of the Earth. 

On the Earth, the atmosphere, as every one knows, exercises, 
in consequence of gravitation, a pressure on all that lies beneath 
it, equal roughly to I4lbs. per square inch. Now, it is this pressure 
that helps to keep water in its liquid state, and only when, by 
means of heat, a contrary upward pressure is developed in. 
the water is this atmospheric pressure counteracted. This 
happens when the temperature of the water at sea-level — 760 mm. 
(or 30 inches) pressure — reaches 100° Centigrade (212° Fahrenheit) 
and this temperature is known as the boiling point of water. 
Naturally the higher above sea-level one goes, the less theair- 

* Philosophical Transactions, 1864 ; Monthly Notices Royal Astronomical 
Society, XXVII., p. 179. 

I Sugli Spettri prismatici di Corpi Celesti, Roma, 1872. . 

I Comptes Rendus, tome LXIV., 1867, p. 1304. 

§ Untersuchungen ueber die Spectra der Planeten, Leipzig, 1874. 

ii Publications, Astronomical Society of the Pacific, vol. VI., pp. 228, 273 ; 
Astronomy and Astrophysics, vol. XIII., p. 752 ; Astrophysical Journal, 
1895, vol. II., p. 28. 

^Astrophysical Journal, 1897, vol. V., p. 328. "• 

** Astrophysical Journal, vol. I., p. 311 ; vol. III., p. 254. 

ft Bulletin de la Societe Astronomique de France, 1895, P- 10. 

XI Astronomy and Astrophysics, XIII., 1894, P- 77'^ ', The Observatory, 
1894, P- 353 ; Astrophysical Journal, 1895, vol. I., p. 193. 

§§ Astrophysical Journal, vol. I., p. 203. 

nil La Planete Mars, vol. II., p. 175. 



pressure and the lower the boihng point of water. (27 mm. pres- 
sure for 1° Cent.). 

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' • 


Regnault's experiments have shown that in air at a density 
•14 of our own. the position of equihbrium between the respective 
pressures of the air and water would be reached at a temperature 
of about 44° C. (111° Fahr.) ; according to Williams* at 59° C. 
(138° Fahr.) ; according to Pickering, at 28° C. (82° Fahr.) This 
then, the temperature of one of our summer days, would be the 
boiling point of water on Mars. 

We all know that evaporation takes place long before the actual 
bo'ling point is reached : in fact, on a winter's da^^ we can see 
the process made manifest owing to the colder air condensing 
the vapour. 

It follows then that owing to the lesser pressure, water in Mars 
must be in a very unstable condition, and the air must of necessity 
contain aqueous vapour, and in large quantities : in fact, must 
nearly always be saturated with it. 

(2) From molecular physics and the kinetic theory of gases 

* The Fuel of the Sun, London, 1S70. 


has been deduced what is known as the critical velocity at the 
surface of any planet.* 

By " critical velocity " is meant a certain definite speed in any 
body projected from the surface of a planet, which that planet 
shall be able to control : if the body start with a faster speed 
it will permanently escape from the planet's control. With re- 
ference to the planet's action we might not inaptly use the 
expression of Professor Lane Poor " speed of control," while 
" speed of escape " would denote the same phenomenon with 
reference to the moving body. 

Now, for a given temperature and pressure, the molecules of 
•each gas travel with a certain definite average velocity, each ac- 
cording to its kind ; this velocity is slower for heavier gases than 
for the lighter ones. The average velocity of a gas is increased 
by rise of temperature ; and the countless collisions of the mole- 
cules impinging on one another also tend to increase their speed 
until a maximum velocity is attained. 

Thus, while the average velocity of the hydrogen molecule 
is I •14 miles per second, its probable maximum speed is 7-4 miles. 
The probable speed of control on the Earth being only 6-9 miles 
per second explains the fact known to every student of chemistry 
that, for all practical purposes, hydrogen does not exist on the 
Earth in an uncombined state. 

If therefore it can be proved that the " speed of control " on 
Mars is less than the " speed of escape " of the vapour molecule, 
then there can be no water vapour present in the Martian at- 
mosphere. But the " speed of control " on Mars is 3-13 miles 
per second, and the average velocity of the water vapour mole- 
cule equals "38 miles per second, while the probable maximum 
speed is only 2 '5 miles per second, leaving a safety margin of 1.6 
miles per second at the ^lartian surface. It is true that this is 
a safe margin on the average : nevertheless, in the outer fringes 
of ihe Martian atmosphere, the " speed of control " will neces- 
sarily be smaller, and the outermost layers of molecules must 
frequently escape control and be lost for ever to the planet's 

This continually takes place, but in what proportion we are 
unable to determine : and small though it may be, its effect must 
be appreciable in the course of ages. This constant leakage 
is doubtless one of the causes which have apparently converted 
the greater part of the Martian surface into a desert. 

The fruitful consequences of the presence of this large amount 
of water vapour in the [Martian atmosphere are extremely im- 
portant for our knowledge of the planet ; and I propose to add 
a word on the more important of them. 

* Johnstone Stoney, " Atmospheres upon Planets and Satellites," see 
supra : also, Astrophysical Jouynal, Jan., 1898, and May, 1900. — S. R. Cook, 
" On the escape of gases from planetary atmospheres according to the kinetic 
theory," Astrophysical Journal, Jan., 1900. — Bryan, " Proceedings of the 
Royal Society," 1900. — C. Lane Poor. " The Solar System," see supra. — 
P. Lowell, " Mars," London, 1900, in appendix, p. 213. — Du Ligonnes, 
" Les atmospheres des planetes," Bulletin de la Societe Astronomique de 
France, June, 1903. 


The air pressure on Mars being considerably less than on the 
highest mountains of this Earth, the average temperature should 
theoretically, from this cause alone, be below zero, as occurs on 
the summits of the Andes or the Himalayas ; and the planet 
should be a globe of ice. And this, without taking into account 
other reasons, such as the greater distance from the Sun. But, 
as a matter of fact, what do we find ? In the words of Marsden 

" The observed phenomena are correctly interpreted by saying that the 
Martian chmate is on an average milder than that of the Earth." 

And to substantiate this statement I need quote but one 
instance, the behaviour of snow on Mars. We find that the snows 
are limited in extent, var}/ with the seasons, and in general are less 
extended than on the Earth. In Mars, the snow in winter extends 
from the Poles over an area some 40° to 50° in diameter : in 
summer, the snow-belt shrinks until it girdles only some 4° to 5°, 
occasionally disappearing entirely at the South Pole ; whereas 
our snows in winter extend over a region some 90° in diameter, 
while in summer the}^ still embrace an area as large as obtains 
in the Martian winter. 

To what can this be due ? No doubt, the smaller extent, or 
the absence of the seas, and the purity of the skies in Mars are 
factors that go towards the making of this genial climate ; but 
by far the most potent agent, to my mind, is the water vapour 
whose presence in large quantities has been demonstrated. Let 
us take these in turn. 

One of the factors which counts for a good deal is the pecu- 
liarity that there are not on Mars as on the Earth, extended masses 
of water — oceans — constantly absorbing a large proportion of 
the solar radiation without themselves being strongly heated, 
and so heating the circumambient atmosphere ; and that prac- 
tically all the heating power of the sun's rays is employed in 
warming a continental surface, for the greater part unprotected 
by vegetation — a surface to all intents an unmitigated Sahara. 

Again thg great purity of the Martian sky, nearly always un- 
obscured by cloud, allows the solar radiation to reach the soil 
without loss, thus compensating in a measure for the greater 
distance of the source of heat. This fact becomes more significant 
when we bear in mind that it is estimated the clouds on our 
Earth intercept, on an average, 50% of this radiation. 

Another factor is the longer duration of the Martian summer, 
aliowing a larger accumulation of heat in the season, being 381 
da^s in Mars against 186 on Earth. The inclination of the axes 
ot Earth and Mars to the Ecliptic being approximately the same, 
the obliquity of the sun's rays for different latitudes at the different 
seasons is practically the same for both planets and can be 
eliminated as far as our present enquiry is concerned. 

But by far the greatest and most pregnant factor in producing 
a temperate climate on Mars is without doubt the amount of 
aqueous vapour in the Martian atmosphere. 

* Astronomical Society of the Pacific, 1895, VII. 


Tyndall* and Buff, have shown that, on reaching the surface 
of the Earth, the Hght rays are changed into obscure heat, and 
as such are radiated back into space. The}^ also found that 
aqueous vapour, while allowing the former to pass, absorbed 
the latter ; the same is true, in a sense, of dry air, but with this 
difference that the power of absorption of aqueous vapour is 
16,000 times that of dry air. The returning heat is thus absorbed 
into the air, and serves to preserve the temperature of the under- 
lying world. To quote Tyndall's words, 

" Aqueous vapour is a blanket more necessary to the vegetable life of 
England than clothing is to man. Remove for a single summer night the 
aqueous vapour from the air which overspreads this country, and every 
plant capable of being destroyed b}^ a freezing temperature would perish. 
The warmth of our fields and gardens would pour itself unrequited into 
space, and the sun would rise upon an island held fast in the iron grip ot 

Given that in Mars, as appears from the latest investigations, 
water vapour is present, and in larger quantities than in our own 
atmosphere, and we have a reasonable explanation of the phe- 
nomena observed, and it is not hard to recognise in the heat- 
storing atmosphere thus constituted the strongest reason ^for 
the generally temperate conditions which would appear to exist 
on the neighbouring planet. 

GEOLOGY OF NYASALAND.— An increasing amount of 
scientific attention has of late been given to Nyasaland. and 
the geology of that country formed the subject of several papers 
read at the Geological Society's meeting on November 17th. by 
Dr. R. H. Traquair, F.R.S., and others. Nyasaland consists 
of a series of high plateaux rising irregularly one upon another. 
The country, is formed, for the greater part, of crystalline rocks : 
these comprise (a) metamorphosed sedimentary beds, including 
graphitic gneisses, with limestones and muscovite-schists : {b) 
foliated igneous rocks, especially augen-gneiss ; (r) plutonic in- 
trusions, usually granite or syenite, more rarely gabbro. An 
altered sedimentary series occurs in the north-west corner of the 
country, and of the members of this series the Mafingi Hills are 
formed. The series consists of accumulations of quartzites, 
grits, and sandstones of pre-Karroo age. Rocks belonging to 
the Karroo system occur in patches in the north of Nyasaland, 
and the system is also represented in the south. High above 
the present level of Lake Nyasa are to be found recent lacustrine 
marls and sands, distant as much as fifteen miles from the present 
margin of the lake. In the northern parts pumiceous tuffs are 
met with, and across the German East African border there is 
a wide distribution of Tertiary and Recent lavas and tuffs. 

* Heat, a Mode of Motion, 2nd ed. 



By Professor A. S. Kidd, M.\ 

In no part of the British Colonial Territories are so many 
languages commonly spoken as in South Africa. In addition to 
English we have : 

(i) The language of the majority of the people; tlie vari(Hi> Native 
varieties of language. *■ ' 

(2) Dutch, spoken by the greatest number of Europeans ; of two main 

types. European Dutch with its devotion to literary standards, and 
Cape Dutch with its disregard of all standards. 

(3) German, spoken as a mother tongue in certain areas, particularly 

between East London and Kingwilliamstown. 
^4) In the streets of Cape Town and Johannesburg one may frequently 
hear Modern Greek, Russian, Yiddish, French, and various Eastern 

As I have sub-divided Dutch, perhaps I ought to sub-divide English 
also, viz., into Standard English. Lowland Scotch. Colonial English, 
Dialect English and. worst of all. American. 

Now in a Colony far away from the Motherland it is not un- 
natural that the Home language should be greatly modified by 
two causes in particular : (1.) the new local conditions, and (II.) 
the contaminating influence of alien tongues where there are 
such, as here we have both Dutch and Native elements at work. 
I. I shall first show : How the new local conditions in Sov.ih Africa 
have necessarily influenced the traditional English vocabulary. 

(i) Very many words current at Home have become obsolete 
here or only literary, e.g. : 

(«) Geological words such as pond, pit. brook. 

{,0) Zoological words such as beagle, dace, minnow, nightingale, 
pike, linnet. 

(y) Botanical terms — well, here we ma}^ dismiss en bloc all 
those dearly lo\'ed English popular flower-names such as 
I Ragged Robin, Sheep's Bane, Saint John's Wort. May- 

flower, Jack-go-to-bed-at-noon, Butcher's Broom, etc. 

Again, even though the South African may use such words as 
daisy, buttercup, honeysuckle, these words do not mean what they 
mean to those of us who were reared in the English rural parts. 
Take the lines : 

" Every shepherd tells his tale 
Beneath the hawthorn in the dale." 

These lines suggest to my mind a definite picture ; to th- South 
African they can only mean much less. 

Again, many words which are only semi-current in England, 
i.e., semi-poetical, are here quite obsolete— such words as beck, 
tarn, dell, dingle, and such words of typical English country as 
nieadotV, close, copse, fell, fen, moor, Jiedgerow. 


{i) Again, take what I may term sociological words, peasant, 
yeoman, squire, squarson, duke, footman, butler, game- 
keeper, crossing-sweeper — all these words are really foreign 
words in South Africa. 

(2) Secondl}'. many words though current here are current in 
a more or less different connotation, e.g.. the word farmer in South 
Africa does not mean the brainless, stolid John Bull type of man, 
whose wife sells butter and fowls and eggs once a week at a stall 
inTthe market of the nearest town, the lord of Hodge and of the 
pretty maid who went a-milking. In South Africa the word 
farmer suggests a very different jMcture. The root-idea of an 
agricultural or pastoral specialist with a tendency to grumble 
at the weather is the same in both countries, but the " wrapping " 
of the root is different. 

This subject, the widely different connotation which attaches 
to the same word as used in different geographical areas or in 
various social classes in the same countr\'. is one of great interest 
to me, and is, I consider, a matter of importance in the teaching 
of English Literature in this country. Even such a common 
word as mother means to the slum child of Liverpool or Battersea 
something very different from what it means to the middle-class 
boy or girl. The connotation of such words depends upon indi- 
vidual experience. To you the word mother suggests all that is 
loving, brave, patient, gentle and pious : to another it may mean 
one who was indifferent, noisy, drunken, vicious. 

This variation of meaning, of course, chiefly applies only to 
words denoting human, animate objects having highly developed 
volitional characteristics. The word haby, on the other hand, or 
cat, dog, etc., would mean the same in all parts and ranks of the 
English-speaking world. I have enlarged upon this topic because 
I feel that we should try to explain the exact meaning of words 
in teaching Literature, to convey to the pupil's mind the real 
meaning of the author. 

Other words current here in a slightly foreign sense are cab 
(here an open two-horse vehicle is often so termed), cart, dollar 
( = is. 6d., a result of depreciation of paper Rix-dollar), couple (not 
necessarily of two hni — a few), bush (partly due to Dutch bosch), 
birds ( = ostriches ) . 

An interesting sub-division under this head is the case of old 
English meanings being revived. In America, as is well known, 
many words and meanings have been preserved which have either 
died or only continued to live as members of the " submerged 
tenth" of language in England itself, e.g., fall (= autumn), slick, 
bluff, freshet, to rile. 

There are not many similar examples in South African experi- 
ence, though the new conditions of life have rehabilitated some 
few provincial paupers or converted some verbal hooligans. 

The diamond and gold-mining industries have given new life 
to Cornish dialect words and other words previously obscure. 

A good example of an old meaning being revived is the word 
furrow in the sense of " water-leading." I was once conversing 
with Mr. J ebb, who was in this country two or three ^-ears ago 


collecting information in regard to land-settlements ; and our 
subject was South African English. He said : " Well, there is 
one usage distinctly African, that of iiirrow of a water-lead- 

As a matter of fact, this is quite an early English use of the 
word, found as early as the 14th century (N.E.D.) In 1561 T. 
Norton writes : " Out of a fountaine water is sometime dronk — 
sometime by forrowes is conveied to the watering of groundes."* 

Some words, again, have widened their meaning in South Africa, 
e.g., forage, camp (ostrich-, railway-), hunt. 

The ostrich industry has introduced man\' new words and 
specialised many old ones. The various names for particular 
kinds of feathers are quite new — jeminas, primes, byocks or bycocks, 
etc. Specialised words are floss, flue, phicking, quilling, clipping. 
I may call to mind in this connexion that specialised feather 
words have been practically unknown in English since the days 
of falconry, a sport which had a large technical vocabulary : 
of Milton's " summed pen." and frequent Elizabethan references. 
(3) I have now to speak of the additions to the Home vocabulary 
which have been found necessary in this country to suit the special 
conditions, and I include in this section words rarely used in 
England — non-naturalized words — which on the other hand, 
are naturalized here. The naturalization laws in the Colonies 
differ from those of the Mother Country. 

(») To deal with additions first, we have borrowed geological 
terms to suit the conditions : from the Dutch, kloof, 
krans, (but cf. Shakespeare's use of term), poort. nek, 
kopje, vlei, veld, spruit, etc. : from Native sources we 
ha:ve donga : from our own elements we compound 
washaway. washout, hliieground . 
(ft) Zoology gives us countless examples : Dutch the host of 
names of species of buck, birds, fish. etc. : the Natives 
give us pallah (antelope), orihi. and others. The fish- 
words are an interesting study in themselves. 
(7) Botany adds many from all sources : — kaffirhooni, sneeze- 
wood, stinkwood, grass-veld, sour-veld. 
(() Sociological and general words : field-cornet, drostdy, 
bond, hustings, commandeer, orphan-chamber ; again, 
assegai, inipi, indiina, goiirah ; and herein I must in- 
clude our drinks, dop. heyniitage, Constantia. Cape S)nokt, 
van der hum, etc. 
The new English Dictionary is often eccentric in its adoption 
or rejection of South African words, but I consider its non-inclusion 
of the word dop a distinct act of injustice. It tells us that he} milage 
is derived from the French wine, so-called from a hermit's^ cell 
on a vineyard-hill near Valence, that Constantia is so called because 
of the name of the Constantia farm, near Capetown, that pontac 
is based on the French wine and place named Pontac, but dop 
has no niche in that great gallery of words, and drake nstein is 
also ignored. 

* See also 161 1 version of the Bible and Bacon's Sylva. 


So far as the N.E.D. is concerned, the South African good-for, 
{i.e. a card signed in a Hotel or Chib for drinks on credit) shares 
the fate of dop, although its history is interesting. The expression 
originated in the Rix-dollar paper currency which was introduced 
at the Cape towards the end of the i8th century. As the lowest 
paper was one skilling many people in business issued private 
cards for parts of the skilling. 

The children of the country I'cveal strange attempts at new 
words in their examination papers. I had over a hundred cases 
in the School Higher of 1907 of the expression hred out = hatched 
(" locust eggs are after a time bred out.") This is, of course, due 
to Dutch uithroeden. 

As might be expected we have borrowed from India, America, 
and various British Colonies useful words. In Home English 
hilly is a term like jack applied to various machines and useful 
articles : in Australia it was specialised to mean what it means 
here ; we borrowed it in its Australian form. America has given 
us store (=shop), buggy, and a few others. 

The word kraal is often regarded as a native word, but it is 
through a Dutch medium derived ultimately from the Portuguese 
ctirral, or corral. From India we get coolie, bungaloiv {i.e. probably 
' belonging to Bengal '). and through the Portuguese medium 
kartel (of a cart). 

Of course Dutch has been the chief source from which we have 
increased our English vocabulary, and many of the words so 
derived have been valuable and even necessary additions. In 
some cases we have fought against Dutch words and ended in a 
compromise ; we have not adopted the Dutch words in their 
Dutch dress but have changed the external form, though keeping 
the inner body, especially in compounds. This is true of such 
words as off-saddle, off-load. etc. The word outspan is interesting 
as showing the superior power of local Dutch surroundings over 
far-away English influences. I see that in the particulars of 
Servitudes on land, drawn up in the first half of last century, the 
authorities use the strange word nnteam in this sense, adding 
the word outspan in brackets ; thus 

" That the persons resorting to the Forest to cut wood shall have the 
xight to iiuteain (outspan) on the land hereby granted."* 

As regards the use of Dutch as slang English, which is very 
offensive though expressive, I have no time to deal with the 
subject here. Words such as trek, spoor, hok we can accept as 
good colonial English, but there are many others which ought to 
be tabooed. 

II. I come now to the second main division of my treatment of 
the language, viz. : The contamination of English by co)itact with 
alien tongues. 

The native languages are, comparatively speaking, innocent 
in this respect, as their influence on grammar and idiom may 
be neglected, and as regards vocabulary they have not injured 
the purity of our mixed language : but Dutch, on the contrary, 

* Division of Alexandria, quoted in Gi-ocott's Penny Mail, May 14th, 1909. 


has done considerable harm to EngHsh. though doubtless English 
has done still more to Dutch. 

The Reports of University Examiners, especially in the last 
two years, will prove this point conclusive!}-. ' " ' 

Idiomatic English is becoraitig rarer and rarer. I am sorry to 
say, in the School Examinations., The order of words and the 
use of the tenses are quite un-English. For details I can refer 
to my own rejiort on the School Higher English of iQoy. a very 
lengthy Report and one ujwn which I spent a good deal of time 
and trouble. The School Examiners of 190S have also very 
pessimistic Reports on the condition of English in the schools 
of the country. I do not think that people realize properly how 
poor the English teaching in the great majority of our schools- 
is. \\'e are drifting slowly but surely towards a lingo and away 
from a language. Baboo English is clearly in sight in South 
Africa, and will l)e upon us unless we make a stand for English 
pure and undefiled. 

I feel bound to record some extracts from the last Reports of 
the Examiners in English in the Intermediate and B.A. Examina- 
tions, for these Reports do not attract as much attention as their 
importance deserves. In regard to the Intermediate, Mr. W. E, 
C. Clarke, who has had many years' experience as a teacher and 
Inspector in Cape Colony, and as a Departmental Officer in the 
Trans^•aal. and also as a University Examiner, and therefore a 
man whose words should carry weight, writes as follows after 
condemning various faults : — 

But fay more serious than anv of the f()re,t,'oing weaknesses is the distitr'biiig 
fact — only too evident — that comparatively feiv have even a tolerable acijuaint- 
ancc witli cultured spoken English as a vehicle for thought. Frequentl^^ 
words were grouped in combinations thoroughly un-English : others were 
used that have no authorised existence : expressit)ns and terms were 
employed in circumstances totally unsuited to them : idioms from other 
languages were rendered literally into English. The feiv essays written in 
easy style and natural language were in refreshing contrast to the mass." 

Another Examiner, the Rev. H. V. Taylor, an examiner of much 
experience, makes the following recommendation : — 

" That public attention be drawn to the serious and liahitual neglect of 
elementary rules of svntax by a large section of Intermediate students. 
This fault must be laid at the door of our teachers, mainly, I presume, those 
in A.i and High Schools." 

In reporting upon the B.A. English, the Rev. J. A. Campl:)ell 
writes : — 

" The ct)miH)sition as usual, is the weakest part of the camlidates' wttrk. 
The impression left on my mind is that it is jxjorer than last year." 

Does it not seem true that a bilingual country is one where 
neither of two languages is spoken or written correctly ? 

I now pass to another way in which English is being contaminated 
by various influences in South Africa, viz.. the question of pro- 

We have happily not yet reached the stage of pronunciation, 
in which, as in the case of many Americans and in some of our 
English dialects, man ceases to be an articulate speaking animal 
and expresses his meaning by inarticulate nasal utterances which 
can only be understood after special study. But there are in- 


tlufiices at work here which are tending towards the corruption 
■of our EngHsh pronunciation. We have, firstly, the influence of 
Dutch with its un-English gutturals and vowels. Secondly, we 
have a verv strong Lowland Scotch element. Thirdly, the English 
people themselves belong very largely to dialect-speaking families, 
including a strong Cockney element as well as a strong \\'estern one. 

As regards Dutch, when we remember that the Dutch are in the 
majorit}- and that they nearly all speak some English it is no- 
wonder that the infection of mis-]ironunciation of a foreign tongue 
spreads to the English Colonials. 

The general effect produced is that English is tending to become 
pronounced as an Englishman pronounces French, i.e., with a 
certain diffidence, resulting in want of easy gliding from word tO' 
word. The individual words get unnecessary stress, and the 
sentence accent is misplaced. 

In reference to the second contaminating inlluence. the Scotch,. 
I feel that I must make my way carefully lest I offend the suscepti- 
bilities of my Scotch friends. A}>art from their j)ronunciation of 
English. I look upon the Scotch Colonists as a most valuable element 
in our countrj'. In Boswell's Johnson we find Sir Alexander 
^lacdonald saying : — 

" I ha\e been correcting several Scotch accents in my friend BosweU. 1 
'Jouht, sir. if anv Scotchman ever attains to a perfect Enghsh pronunciation." 

Johnson then replies : — 

" Why. sir, few of them do, because they do not persevere after acquiring 
a certain degree of it. But, sir, there can be no doubt that they may attain 
to a perfect English pronunciation, if they will. We find how near they come 
to it ; antl certainh' a man who conquers nineteen parts of the Scottish 
accent may conquer the twentieth. But, sir. when a man has got the 
better of nine-tenths he grows weary, he relaxes his diligence ; he finds he 
has corrected his accent so far as not to be disagreeable, and he no longer 
desires his friends to tell him when he is wrong, nor does he choose to be- 

There is much truth in this, but my own experience is that many 
of our Scotch teachers do not conquer even the nine-tenths, and 
as there are so many Scotch teachers in South Africa their influence 
is very great, and it must affect in time the average of English 
pronunciation. Now. I admit that we have no absolute standard 
of correct pronunciation in English : no one speaks with absolute 
correctness, but I look upon Scotch pronunciation as quite as 
wrong as that of my own Mother Tongue, the dialect of the borders 
of Lancashire and Cheshire. 

■To remedy this danger of Dutch and Scotch barbarising English 
pronunciation, I should like to see a greater study of phonetics in 
our Training Colleges and to see the Inspectors paying more atten- 
tion to correct pronunciation in the schools. We can do nothing 
with the old-established teachers, but much can be done at the 
Training Colleges. Some years ago. I am glad to say, the Scotch 
Education Department, in the face of much opposition, introduced 
Phonetics into the curriculum of the Training Colleges. 

In the schools there should be practice in the speaking of col- 
loquial English as well as in the reading of books aloud, for. ^s 
Coleridge says, " reading ought to differ from talking " as regards 


pronunciation, and particularly intonation. Where English is so 
much of a foreign language this practice in colloquial English ought 
to be part of the curriculum, though, of course, our curriculum is 
overcrowded as it is, for we are slaves to a craze for a smattering 
of everything, and our own language, whether English or Dutch, 
has to give equal rights to everything else. 

I may, perhaps, at this stage be allowed to draw a comparison 
between Welsh and English in North Wales and English and Dutch 
in South Africa. I have had considerable teaching experience in 
a bilingual country only four hours' jovuney from London, where 
a far larger proportion of my pupils thought and dreamt and spoke 
at home and prayed in Church in Welsh than is the ordinary pro- 
portion in this country who use Dutch as their Mother Tongue. 
As a result of my close association with these Welsh people I 
have always had a great deal of sympathy with those here who 
resent having the alien English language thrust upon them. The 
language spoken naturally in the earliest years and in all the most 
intimate relations of home life and on all occasions when, as in 
religious and political life, people seem most closely drawn to- 
gether, must not be rudely pushed on one side. If, as I hope, this 
country will before the end of this century cease to be bilingual it 
will be through a preliminary fusion of the races. Reconciliation 
and fusion have always preceded the dropping of one of two 
languages, except where, as has rarely happened, a tyrant has 
succeeded in crushing a language by brute force. Over a large 
part of Wales there has not so far been fusion with the English, 
because of the fact that there has been little inter-communication. 
In Britain people are isolated if living in mountainous country 
away from railways. Now, these Welsh who are still really Welsh 
are intensely proud of their language and also of its literature. 
This suggests the first point of difference between them and the 
Colonial Dutch. The Welsh are, to a large extent, musicians and 
poets and are great readers of their own literature. They are also 
fond of composing poetry in complicated metres, and writing 
prose essays for their competitions. 

I have myself seen a working-man sitting up half the night in 
labour over some national epic. Whether the tremendous labour 
results in the birth of a ridiculously unimportant literar\' mouse 
does not much matter. The essential point is that language and 
literature are both beloved. 

Now, in South Africa I have not in my ten years of Colonial 
life found this literary enthusiasm among the Dutch. I think 
that this want of the passion for reading the treasures of the past 
and for trying to emulate them will prevent Dutch from being 
a dominant language. The colloquial use of a thousand words 
or so will not preserve the language in the absence of a stimulating 
tjo-anny to keep it living. 

Another difference between the Welsh conditions and those 
here is that in the University Examinations in Wales \\'elsh has 
been kept parallel with English so far as syllabuses go. In South 
Africa, however, the Dutch authorities who have had control of 
the examinations and syllabuses in Dutch have {deliberately. I 


believe) kept the standard in Dutch below that in English right up to 
and inclusive of the Intermediate Examination. In Wales this re- 
spect paid to the national language reacts favourably upon English, 
for the better Welsh is studied the less danger there is of con- 
tamination. I should very much like to see the standard of Dutch 
raised in all our examinations for the same reasons, and personally 
I should like to see more English-speaking new-comers study 
Dutch thoroughly and be able to say as Queen Katherine said 
to Wolsey : — 

" I am not such a truant since my coming, 
As not to know the language I have Uv'd in." 

Now in both Wales and Sou-th Africa, for the most part, in 
all schools other than elementary, English is taken as the medium 
of instruction in the higher standards, and in both cases I con- 
sider this to be, from the strictly lingitistic point of view, a national 
grievance. The pupils naturally get a much wider English vo- 
cabulary than Welsh or Dutch, and therefore they find it easier 
to read English books for their amusement or instruction out of 
school. But in Wales there is such love for yr hen iaeth (the old 
language) as well as for yr hen wlad (the old land) and vr hen 
genedl (the old nation) that they give Welsh literature also con- 
siderable attention. Of course, in both cases there are other 
considerations of a practical nature, which make it desirable 
from self interest to accept English as a medium. All the same 
I believe that this countr\' would progress more in education 
if in Dutch districts Dutch were the medium up to and inclusive 
of the Fourth Standard, and after that the medium for one or 
two subjects. Let the Dutch first get a thoroughly sound know- 
ledge of their own language, and not try to get a smattering of 
both English and Dutch in the early years of school life. 

I now leave the Language and turn to the special difficulties 
we have to face in teaching English Literature in South Africa. 
It must be realized that while the Home English Language is a 
foreign language to more than half the Europeans in the country, 
it iSj even to the English colonial-born, a semi-ioxeign language, 
and therefore in the same way and to a greater extent English 
Literature is a foreign literature in South Africa. 

The whole setting of life and thought in South Africa is different 
from what it is in the Homeland, and this is the more important 
as our English literature is so very largely insular in character, 
that is to say. saturated through and through with English insular 
conditions, climatic, social, aesthetic, emotional, and religious. 
The colonial mind, especially as it is not particularly imaginative, 
cannot realise the conditions of life in the Homeland, which have 
produced our Literature. 

I will try to illustrate these special features of the Homeland 

{a) Firstly, as regards climate and scenery ; — the English 
seasons are very different from those here, and our scenery is 
still more unlike English scenery. 

" Oh, to be in England 
Now that April's there ! " 


\\'liat does that mean to the South African ? 
" A noise like of a hidden brook 
In the leafy month of June, 
That to the sleeping woods all night 
Singeth a quiet tune." 

What of that ? 

No doul^t the poems ot the sea can appeal with more force^ 
for the sea, though ever restless, is unchanging from age to age^ 
and is for the most part the same all the world over. 

The sea 

" Doth with his eternal motion make 
A sound like thunder — everlastingly." 

But there are sea-scapes in England which we canj^never get 
here. I have never seen here as I have seen in the Menai Straits 
in North Wales. 

" Such a tide as moving seems asleep. 
Too full for sound and foam, 
When that which drew from out the boundless dee]) 
Turns again home." 

Again. Tennyson's In Metnoriam is essentially English in its^ 
scenic setting, and no colonial-born student can realise the ' curious 
felicity ' of its English touches, though he may appreciate the 
intellectual and spiritual quality of the poem. 

I will quote from it two passages, one to show how intensely 
English is the scener}'. and one to remind you that we havcMio- 
Oxford or Cambridge atmosphere here. 

No gray old grange, or lonely fold, 

Or low morass and whispering reed. 
Or simple stile from mead to mead, 
Or sheepwalk up the windy wold. 
" No hoary knoll of ash and haw 

That hears the latest linnet trill. 
Nor quarry trench'd along the hill 
And haunted by the wrangling daw." 

And now for Cambridge : — 

1 passed beside the reverend walls 

In which of old I wore the gown : 

1 roved at random thro' the town. 
And saw the tumult of the halls ; 
And heard once more in college fanes 

The storm their high-built organs make, 

And thunder-music, rolling, shake 
The prophet blazon'd on the panes." 

As there is at present in this country a mania for rinking. I 
will quote some lines of Wordsworth which will show how different 
the old-fashioned English environment is from that of our South 
African skating : — 

" So thi-ough the darkness and the cold we flew. 
And not a voice was idle : with the din 
Meanwhile the precipices rang aloud ; 
The leafless trees and every icy crag 
Tinkled like iron ; while the distant hills " 
Into the tumult sent an alien sound 

Of melancholy, not unnoticed, while the stars ■ ' | 

Eastward were sparkling clear, and in the west 
The orange sky of e\'ening died away." 

(ItiflticiiCL of Xatiiral Objects.) 


(b) A second point of difference is found in social conditions. 
All the feudal or semi-feudal conditions of English village life 
can only be dimly visioned here, and, ha})pily, the same is true of 
most of the evils caused by the sweating, the overcrowding, the 
moral degradation and the poverty of the larger English towns. 
The poems of Crabbe and the works of Miss Austen and Mrs. (iaskell 
cannot be read in their full meaning here, and Mrs. Browning's 
Cry of ihe Cliildrcn is fortunately quite out of place here. 

We have not here, either, the feudal survival of the poor man's 
reverence for a jieer. even for such a brewer or journalist mushroom- 
peer as the one to whom Tennyson refers as 

■ This new-mack- lord, whose splendour plucks 
The slavish hat Ironi the xillaj-er's head." 

(t) Thirdly, let us take aesthetic, emotional, religious differences 
which result in a great gulf being fixed between Southampton and 
Table Bay. Under this group I include all the English survivals 
of " medisevalism " — ruined castles and abbeys, ancient cathedrals, 
pictiu'es by the Old Masters, historical associations of places and 
families, etc. The absence of such reminders of the brave days 
of old, and of such means of helping the imagination is one of the 
greatest losses of colonial life. 

Scott's novels, it is true, are popular in this country, but that 
is because he, like Shakesj^eare, for the most part draws types of 
human nature which will stand for ever because the}' are true to- 
human nature in all places and times. Then, again, the adventures 
recorded by Scott appeal to the colonial boy. Thus Scott triumphs 
here in spite of his local colour, his media^valism and antiquarianism. 

Again, as regards the religious tone of mind, the colonist is very 
different from the Homelander, especially from the Homelander 
of the towns. In England religion is " morality tinged with more 
or less emotion." l:)ut here the emotional side is very little developed. 
It is because of this atrophy of the emotions in South Africa that 
so many preachers, who come here with the reputation of being 
mightil}- moving preachers in the English pulpit, fail wholly or 
partially in their attempt to stir the individualistic and unhysterical 

Again, no South African could ever write hymns such as the 
Wesleys wrote, partly because the humility of the " poor worm " 
wandering in a " vale of woe " does not appeal to the son of the 
veld, to the son of the land " where the healing stillness lies," 
and partly because the South African has not yet reached the 
stage of introspective analysis. In fact, speaking generall3% I 
fear that it will be a long time before we have a " nest of South 
African singing birds " so far as Romantic Poetry is concerned. 
The Romantic Movement was partly a Renascence of Wonder, 
and wonder is not a South African trait, and partly an emotional 
high-tide, and Emotion is not much in evidence here. 

I have attempted to sketch some of the difficulties which colonial 
students have to overcome in trying to appreciate the beauties and 
graces of English literature. 

How far, then, can these students be helped by artificial means ? 
I would suggest (i) firstly, a closer union of the study of Literature 


with ■ that of History. This inter-connexion of Literature and 
History has been often advocated in England itself. When study- 
ing a special period of Literature or a special book the student 
should study the whole historical setting of that period or book, 
and by history I do not mean merely chronology, but political. 
social, economic, religious history also. At the present time in 
our University degree course it is absolutely impossible for an 
Honours candidate in Modern Languages to take History as a 
subject. Is not this one of many silly University regulations ? 

(2) Secondly, in Literature teaching there should be a constant 
reference to illustrated books, such as Garnett and Gosse's English 
Literature, to pictures and lantern-slides selected with the special 
object of reproducing the life of the time as graphically as possible. 

For this purpose every College and the larger schools should 
have good English libraries and be well equipped with such means 
of aiding the pupils' imagination and stimulating their interest. 
Let us illustrate our Tennyson, just as we illustrate our Shakespeart- 
by stage costumes and scenery. We literary people have allowed 
the scientists to use all the money available in fitting out labora- 
tories for their so-called practical work. 

A tradition has grown up that Literature can be efficiently 
taught by means of a shilling text-book, and I fear that our Educa- 
tion Departments would ridicule an application for a grant-in-aid 
of an English laborator\^ I am convinced, however, that we 
shall some day overcome this ridicule and establish a new tradition, 
that even English is a subject worth spending money on. 

In the advanced study of the history of the Language, or 
«ven in the Intermediate course, it would be e.xtremely useful to 
have a good set of gramophone records to illustrate the various 
dialects. Language study is a history of sounds, and not of written 

(3) Thirdly and lastly, we ought to see that the teachers of 
English in the schools should themselves know English thoroughly, 
■both Language and Literature, but especially they shotild know 
the English Language, the grammatical and idiomatic uses, the 
real meanings of words, and the standard pronunciation. In 
view of the contaminating influence of Dutch the teachers of 
English should have a fair knowledge of Dutch also, so that they 
may point out to their pupils the differences of idiom, etc., just 
as when teaching Greek composition to beginners in Greek I should 
point out the differences between Greek and Latin idioms. 

The teachers should also encourage the reading of good English 
authors, and the Education Departments should see that the 
country is well supplied by the booksellers with the countless 
cheap editions of classical English books. There is much else 
that I should like to say, but I must not now detain vou longer. 
May I express the hope that Dutch and English alike will do their 
best to keep the well of English pure and undefiled, and that 
English and Dutch will combine to prevent the language of Hol- 
land becoming contaminated by base imitations of English idioms 
and words ? 



By Joseph Burtt-Davy. F.L.S. 

The Florida Velvet-bean, introduced into South Africa in 1903, 
has found a valued place in sub-tropical Agriculture, especially 
in the Bush-veld of the Transvaal. This plant was known at the 
time of its introduction here, and since, under the botanical name 
of Mucuna utilis. 

A botanical and historical study of the plant has recently been 
made by Katherine Stephens Bort, of the United States Depart- 
ment of Agriculture, and the results ha\e been published as Part 3 
of Bulletin No. 141 of the Bureau of Plant Industry, with the title 
" The Florida Velvet-bean and its History." This was issued 
May 19th, 1909. but a copy has only just reached me. In this 
publication the author proposes to discard the name Mucuna 
utilis as applied to our plant, and creates for it a new name — 
Stizolobiiim deeringiamini . 

It is of importance to scientific Agriculture that correct names 
be used for the plants grown as farm, garden, orchard or forest 
crops, even though their use involves the abandonment of well- 
known names. But such changes cause a certain amount of 
inconvenience to scientific workers, and often of annoyance to the 
layman and so-called " practical " man. It is therefore incum- 
bent upon Agricultural scientists to investigate carefully, and 
make sure of their ground, before adopting proposed changes of 
nomenclature. When we are quite sure then let us adopt the 
change without hesitation. It is because there is some doubt of 
the validity of the name Stizolohium deeringianum that I have 
brought forward this subject. I also wish to call attention to 
certain loose methods "of treatment, not infrequently met with 
in modern scientific publications, which are a serious menace to 
accuracy. Vv^hen a good deal of time and thought have been 
given to the study of a limited and very special subject, such as 
the history of the Florida Velvet-bean, and when a well-illustrated 
publication upon it is issued by an important institution like the 
LTnited States Department of Agriculture, we have a right to 
expect that no reasonable effort should have been spared to make 
it the last word on the subject. 

In this instance such does not appear to have been the case. 
Without going into an exhaustive study of the pamphlet before 
us, a few points, taken at random, will illustrate my meaning and 
show the necessity for further study before accepting the new 
name for an old and well-known plant. 

First as to the adoption of the generic name Stizolobium. We 
are told (p. 31) that the genus Mucuna clearly consists of two dis- 
tinct genera, as pointed out by Dr. Prain in a paper published 
in 1897. But it is admitted that these "two so-called genera were 
recognised as only one by such authorities as Bentham and Hooker, 
and Ensrler and Prantl. 


Length of pod 

4 to 4I in. 

AVidth of pod 

. . I in. 

Shape of pod 



'' It would have been useful to the many Agricultural Scientists 
who have not ready access to the Journal of the Asiatic Society 
of Bengal, if Miss Bort had quoted the reasons given by such a 
well-known Botanist as Colonel Prain, for considering Siizolobi^im 
tofbe generically distinct from Mncnna. The characters given by 
Miss Bort as distinguishing the two so-called genera, seem to us 
insufficient to warrant greater segregation than into sub-genera. 

Secondly, as to the specific differences between ntilis. and 
Deeringianum, these are stated to be as follows : — 

Dccriiisidii ": ' . 

3 ill- 

" Not so -wide." 
More cyhndrical and IjUuit 
at t]\e ends, less prononn- 
cedly falcate, and not so 
decidedly rideed longi- 
{ tudinally. 

Pubescence of pod . . Thin, " Appressed. and Dense, velvety and very 
almost silky " hairy. soft. 

Shape of seed .. Long, oval and flattened. . Almost spherical. 

Size of seed . . Large . . . . . . Smaller. 

•Colour of seed . . Not mottled nor speckled. ^Mottled and speckled. 

Judging by the varietal differences between other cultivated 
species of Leguminosse {e.g., the Cowpea. the Soybean, various 
sorts of garden bean, etc.) the above differences are not of more 
-than varietal worth. 

I fail to see the advantage of basing genera and species on such 
slender differences alone ; on the other hand, it tends to destroy 
the utility of the Linnean system of botanical nomenclature which 
preserves to us a certain sense of the relationship of genera, species 
and varieties which is of great practical value. After all. the sole 
raison d'etre of a system of nomenclature is the' convenience of 
those who use it. 

One cannot help regretting that if a new specific name had to be 
given, the author of it did not choose one more appropriate to the 
subject. " William Deering, of Cocoanutgrove, Florida." may 
liave had something to do with the introduction of the Florida 
Velvet-bean to the notice of the scientific agricultural world, and 
if so this fact might have been mentioned, otherwise another name 
would have been preferable. 

The method of presentation of the facts compiled is somewhat 
loose ; e.g. on p. 32 it is simply stated that " the original source 
■of the species is unknown," without reference to the information 
furnished by Mr. Carleton that it was " introduced with coffee 
seed,'' and on another specimen " introduced from Tropical 
America or West Indies," as quoted on p. 25, and which may 
furnish a clue to the origin of the species. It is to be hoped that 
comparison of specimens of Muciina from the West Indies and 
other parts of tropical America, in the European herbaria, will 
lead to the discovery of the native country of this interesting 
plant. The botanical collections being made in the West Indies, 
for the New York Botanical Garden, may also throw light on tlie 


Destructive criticism is a thankless and often useless task, 
especially where one has not access to the materials for a recon- 
struction of that which is criticised. But it seems necessary at 
this time to issue a warning against adopting new names for old 
crops, without sufficient reason. 

In other respects Miss Bort's publication is worthy of commen- 
dation ; the plates are excellent, and the text shows a considerable 
amount of patient research through ancient archives dealing with 
the introduction into America of agricultural crops ; we wish that 
inore of this might be done before all the old documents are 
irretrievably lost, as has been the case, recently, with some of them. 

ATOMIC WEIGHT OF CARBON.— Last June Dr. Alexander 
Scott, F.R.S., Director of the Davy-Faraday Research Laboratory, 
announced, at a meeting of the Chemical Society, that, as a very 
•concordant result of a number of preliminary determinations of 
the amount of silver nitrate needed for the titration, according to 
the method of Stas, of weighed quantities of pure ammonium 
bromide, tetramethylammonium bromide, and tetraethylam- 
monium bromide, he had arrived at the conclusion that the atomic 
weight of carbon, instead of the present accepted value of 12.002 
— the result, principally, of jihysical determinations — should be 
-considered as 12.026. At the time these figures were challenged 
by Dr. (now Sir Edward) Thorpe, then Director of the Government 
Laboratories, and by Prof. Clarke, the English and American 
representatives on the International Conmiission on Atomic 
Weights, who at once objected to Dr. Scott's emplovment. in his 
calculations, of what they regarded as an obsolete atomic weight 
for silver (io7*93), while Sir William Ramsay and Prof. H. B. 
Dixon, amongst others, enquired wliether precautions had been 
taken thoroughly to dry the crystals of the salts titrated. Dr. 
Scott disposed of the former objection by pointing out that the 
atomic weight of silver, being eliminated in the course of his calcu- 
lations, did not affect the final result, and stated, in reply to the 
other enquiry, that the salts had been purified by sublimation. 
At the Society's meeting on the 2nd December the subject was re- 
verted to. Sir Edward Thorpe drew attention to a recent paper 
by Guye and Zachariades {Coinptes Rendus, cxlix, 503). wherein 
it is stated that the method ordinarily adopted for converting 
weights of fine light powders to a vacuum standard gives incorrect 
results owing to the occlusion of air, which may affect materially 
determinations of the value of an atomic weight. To this possi- 
bility Sir Edward ascribed the high atomic weight obtained by Dr. 
Scott in his experiments. Sir Edward had worked out a calcula- 
tion for error due to occluded air, and this almost exactlv accounted 
for the higher value deduced by Dr. Scott. The latter value had 
been considered by the International Committee on Atomic \'\'eights, 
but was not accepted. Dr. Scott, in a replying paper, disputed the 
accuracy of Guye and Zachariades' conclusions, and, taking Potas- 
sium chloride, one of the salts quoted by them, pointed out that 


if the amount of air stated by them had really been occluded in 
the powder — 27 c.c. of air in 100 grammes — the latter would 
undoubtedly have effervesced on being dropped into water, which 
it did not. In respect of this salt the experiments of Guye and 
Zachariades had been checked in his own laboratory, with totally 
different results. He therefore concluded that by no means so 
large an error can be ascribed to the occlusion of air, and was of 
opinion that further comment on Guye and Zachariades' work 
was superfluous in the absence of a detailed account of their opera- 
tionsr-rncluding their actual weighings. 

In this connection it may be noted that Dr. J. Moir. of Pretoria, 
m his paper on "A method of harmonising the Atomic Weights " 
(Journ. Chem. Soc, Nov., 1909, p. 1752). observes : — 

" The idea now to be presented occurred to the author eighteen niontlis 
ago, but as it gave an incorrect result when applied to Carbon as 12-00 
(0=16}. it was not pursued further. The recent determinations, however, 
oi Dr. A. Scott, give a value in agreement with the theory, and the author, 
therefore, ventures to put it forward in a new form." 

Dr. Moir's calculated atomic weight for Carbon is I2"022. 


Chemical, Metallurgical and Mining Society of South Africa. — 
Saturday. November 20th : W. R. Dowling, Vice-President, in the chair. — 

Some experiments on Smelting Titaniferous Iron Ore " : Prof. G. H. 
Stanley- Ores of this character have been usually looked upon by iron masters 
as valueless on account of their refractory character and their incapability 
of commercial blast-furnace smelting: several experiments were, therefore, 
conducted with ores containing 1 5 per cent, of Titanium calculated as dioxide. 
If the slags are calculated to form monosilicates with the silica equal in 
proportion to Ti„0;i, they will be fusible and fluid. — " Treatment of Ore 
Slime " : A. F. Crosse- Description of a method devised b}' the author 
to overcome the difficulty of removing the dissolved gold from slimes that 
have been treated with cyanide. This is done by treating the slime with 
weak cyanide solution in a conical vat, a gentle upward flow, imparted to 
the liquid by means of an air current, ensuring that the upper layer 
of liquid is clear and so in fit state for precipitation, and capable of being 
readily drawn off for that purpose. 

Addresses Wanted. 

The Assistant General Secretary (P.O. Box 1497, Cape Town) would be 
glad to receive the correct addresses of the following members, whose last 
known addresses are given below : — 

Boulton, H. C, c/o Messrs. Pauling & Co., Ltd., Broken Hill, Rhodesia. 

Brooks, Edwin James Dewdney, C.E., Public Works Department, Umtata. 

Brown, Walter Bruce, District Engineer, Cape Government Railwavs, 
Craciock, C.C. 

Campbell, Allan McDowell McLeod, C.E.. B.A.. F.I.Inst.. Cape Govern- 
ment Railways, Aliwal North, C.C. 

Champion, Ivor Edward, P.O. Roberts Heights, Pretoria (or 47 t. Currie 

Dickie, A., 475, Currie Road, Durban Natal. 

Gillispie, John, Railway Survey Camp, George, C.C. 

Hutt, Ernest W. , P.O. Box 2862, Johannesburg. 

Nichoi, William, Superinteirdent of Mines, De Beers Consd. Minv.--. Ltd., 
Kimberley, C.C. 

Phillies, Geoftre\' John, Acting District Engineer, De Aar, C.C. 



By W. Johnson, L.R.C.S., L.R.C.P. 

For many years I worked at the problem of the origin of 
diamonds and of the possibihty of manufacturing them by arti- 
ficial means, trying more especially to discover and follow the 
methods pursued by nature in this matter, and I now propose 
to record some of the results at which I have arrived. 

Before the discovery of the South African Diamond Mines all 
the diamonds found, first, in India, and afterwards in Brazil, 
were found in material that was generally allowed to be of secondary 
origin, and, therefore, of comparatively little value in throwing 
light on the actual origin of the diamond. The discovery of 
diamonds in this country, however, considerably lightened the 
problem, and the investigations which followed served to narrow 
down the question to a much smaller area. 

Some authorities have held, even with regard to the South 
African Mines, that the diamonds were derived from an extraneous 
source and not formed in the mines themselves. The Dwyka 
conglomerate, for instance, has been named as a possible source. 
By others the eclogite boulders and concretions have been credited 
with being the original matrix. In this case, however, we do not 
need to look outside the mines for the source, as the concretions 
and boulders containing diamonds may quite well have been 
formed within the mines themselves, at a certain stage of their 

Leaving the theory of the origin of terrestrial diamonds from 
meteorites to the idealists who hold that view, there is only 
one other theory, that the diamonds were not formed in the 
mines themselves, that we need notice, and that is the theory 
of Moissan, Sir William Crookes, and others. This theory sup- 
poses that the diamonds were first formed deep down in the 
earth in masses of molten iron, by the disintegration of which 
they passed later on into the blue ground of the mines. This 
theory derives its plausibility from the fact that small diamonds 
of microscopical size have been formed by suddenly cooling molten 
iron that has been saturated with carbon at a high temperature. 
Many take it that this theory has settled the question of the 
origin of the diamond in the mines once for all ; and although 
several objections have been launched against it, the great authority 
of those who support it, and the positive results of the experiments, 
however meagre, have so far maintained its prominence. I 
say, " however meagre," because the largest diamond produced 
in this way does not exceed 75 of a millimetre in length. Mr. 
Gardner Williams, late General Manager of De Beers, than whom, 
as Sir William Crookes once said, no man living knows more 
about diamonds, has consistently opposed this theory from 
the first. I will refer to it later on. 


Replying to some objections that have been made against 
the formation of the diamond in the mines themselves, Hatch 
and Corstophine, in their Geology of South Africa say : — 

" But the facts so far known do not in any way controvert the view that 
the blue ground, or the rock from which it was derived, is itself the 
original matrix of the diamond. The fragmental character of many of 
the diamonds is as explicable on the assumption that they were formed 
in the molten magma and broken in the movements that went on in the 
pipes as it is on the assumption that the diamonds were derived from some 
foreign rock." 

Assuming, then, that the diamonds were formed in the mines 
themselves, and leaving the molten-iron theory for future con- 
sideration, there still remains the very important question to 
decide as to the stage in the evolution of the diamond mines at 
which the diamonds were formed. Were they formed in the 
olivine rock, when it was first in a molten condition, or were 
they formed later on, when it had become mixed with water 
and steam, and had attained the mud -volcano stage that pre- 
ceeded its eventual solidification ? I have always felt that the 
answer to this question, and indirectly the solution of the problem 
before us, turned largely on the question of the temperature at 
which the diamond was formed, and if we can succeed in fixing 
a maximum limit to the temperature at which diamonds 
were formed in the pipes, we shall have taken a great step to- 
wards the solution of the problem. After a careful and prolonged 
consideration of the evidence available, I have come to the 
conclusion that the diamonds were formed in the mines after 
the latter had reached the mud-volcano stage ; and the object 
of this paper is mainly to attempt to establish that view. 

Let us first consider what are the facts against the diamonds 
having been formed in the molten volcanic rock. 

In the De Beers Mine there is a dyke of volcanic rock that 
goes locally by the name of the " snake." This dyke of volcanic 
rock, together with similar dykes that have been found out- 
side the actual margin of the mine, has been found by most 
careful microscopical and other examination to be exactly similar 
to the blue ground as it occurs in the mines, excepting that the 
latter has undergone more disintegration from the prolonged 
action of steam and hot water to which it was later exposed. 
In other respects, however, these are practically identical and 
there seems to be no doubt that the volcanic dykes and the blue 
ground, as we now know it. had the same common origin from 
below. Yet the most careful examination has failed to show 
the presence of diamonds in the unaltered volcanic rock. I 
repeat, that, so far as we know, no diamonds have ever been found 
in South Africa in any rock that has remained unaltered just as it 
was poured out from the volcano. In all cases where diamonds are 
found, the rock has undergone considerable subsequent alteration. 
That is a very significant fact. Besides the fact that diamonds 
are never found in unaltered volcanic rock, experiment supplies 
us with other facts that seem to prove conclusively that they 
could not have existed for any length of time in contact with 
the molten rock without being destroyed. Experiments carried 


out some years ago at Leipsic showed that, when some of the blue 
ground from the South African Diamond Mines was taken and 
melted in a furnace, and small diamonds were put into the melted 
mass and retained there for an hour or so, the diamonds 
were to a certain extent eaten away. On examining the residue 
after the experiments, the diamonds were found to be eroded 
to some depth from the surface, with little dark coloured balls 
in the cavities, which were shown to consist of iron, or carbide 
of iron, reduced from the oxide present in the blue. This result 
is just what our chemical knowledge of these substances would 
lead us to expect, and I think we have every reason to accept these 
experiments as proving beyond doubt that the diamonds could not 
possibly be kept in contact with the molten blue ground for any 
length of time without being destroyed ; and, therefore, that 
it was equally impossible that they could have been formed in 
the molten rock. In certain metallurgical operations for the 
production of wrought iron reactions occur similar to the Leipsic 
experiments just quoted. Thus, for instance, at a certain stage 
of the operations a given amount of the oxides and silicate of 
iron is mixed with the molten cast iron. A lively reaction occurs, 
resulting in the oxidation of the carbon in the cast iron at the 
expense of the oxygen in the oxides of iron. This is quite anal- 
ogous to the destruction of diamonds in the molten blue at the 
expense of the oxides of iron contained in it. In other respects 
also diamond, at high temperature, acts similarly to the other- 
forms of carbon. Thus, for instance, if powdered diamond 
is heated with powdered iron in a closed vessel to a temperature 
of some 1,200° or 1,300° C, the iron is converted into steel, 
just as if it had been heated with an equal quantity of graphite 
or amorphous carbon. 

There is no need to pursue this j^oint further, especially as 
the facts I am now about to mention with a view to determine 
approximately the temperature at which diamond was formed 
in the mud volcanoes, tell equally well against their formation 
in the molten rock. 

I will now proceed to mention the facts I consider afford 
sufficient proof that the diamonds in the South African Mines 
were formed when the latter had reached the mud-volcano stage ; 
and which also, I hope, will prove that the temperature at which 
they were formed did not probably exceed a moderate red heat. 

A large number of diamonds have been found containing foreigii 
enclosures of various kinds, gaseous, liquid and solid ; besides 
which diamonds have been found crystallised upon, or adhering 
to, other minerals, some of which, at least, can be melted at a 
temperature not exceeding a moderate red heat. Certain dia- 
monds have been found containing water, or containing mineral's 
with water of crystallization or of constitution. Such a mineral; 
apophyllite, was found some years ago in a diamond from De- 
Beers Mine. It contains 16% of water, and on heating a portion 
of the mineral obtained from the inside of the De Beers diamond 
in a glass tube water was given off. The diamond was de- 
clared by Mr. Gardner Williams to be perfect on the outside,- 


with no cracks, or defects, whereby water might have subsequently 
peiietrated into it. Diamonds have also been found containing 
liquid carbon dioxide in their cavities. Now, if water, or water 
va=pour in the form of steam is passed over carbon, or carbon- 
aceous substances at a temperature of from 600*^ C. upwards 
the water will be decomposed, carbon dioxide and hydrogen 
being produced. At higher temperatures some carbon monoxide 
will be formed until, at a temperature of about 1000° C, it and 
h\'drogen are the chief products. The same reactions would 
occur if diamonds were formed from carbonaceous substances 
in the presence of water or water vapour, whenever the temper- 
ature exceeded 600° C. 

Hence, when we find some diamonds containing water in some such 
form as above, we are justified in concluding that such diamonds, 
during their formation, cannot have been exposed to temperatures 
at which carbon and water mutually react, or the water in them 
would have been decom]X)sed. The same reasoning applies 
to the presence of carbon dioxide in diamonds. Small diamonds 
heated in melted carbonate of soda or potash, or an equi-molecular 
mixture of the two, which melts at a temperature below 800° 
C, act on the carbonates, decomposing them, and evolving carbon 
monoxide. A similar action occurs when carbonaceous matter 
!s heated in carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide being produced. 
When, therefore, we find diamonds containing liquified carbon 
dioxide in their cavities, we are justified in concluding that such 
diamonds have not been formed at a temperature much higher 
than 800° or 900° C. The high pressure under which such dia- 
monds have been formed, is shewn by the presence of liquified 
carbon dioxide, which at temperatures such as those mentioned 
would amount to at least about 300 atmospheres, ancf perhaps 
much more, and would probably intensify' the reactions I have 
outlined. Indeed, in the case of water and carbon we should 
probably not have free hydrogen liberated but a mixture of 

Other diamonds contain inclusions that seem to indicate that 
they had not been formed at a very high temperature. Thus, 
some dark coloured diamonds owe their dark appearance to 
finely divided graphite. When such diamonds are powdered 
and the powder heated in oxygen gas it is found that the graphite 
burns away at a temperature of about 200° C. below that at which 
the diamond powder begins to burn. Now, there are several 
kinds of graphite, some soft and some hard, and it is found 
that if the soft variety is heated to a high temperature it is 
converted into the hard kind. The harder the kind of graphite 
is the higher is the temperature at which it begins to burn, so 
that, as Sir William Crookes observes, the temperature of ignition 
of any particular form of graphite enables us to judge approxi- 
mately of the temperature at which it has been formed, or to 
which it has subsequently been ~ exposed. Apj^lying this rule 
to the case in point, where the graphite in some diamonds ignites 
at a temperature some 200" C. below that at which the diamond 
powder begins to burn, we must conclude that such graphite. 


and therefore the diamonds containing it, was never exposed 
to a very high temperature, otherwise the graphite would have been 
changed from the soft to the hard kind. As diamond ignites 
in oxygen gas at from 750° to 800° C. the soft variety of graphite 
mentioned above must ignite at a temperature not exceeding 
600° C. 

Most diamonds when burnt leave a small amount of ash, which 
varies from a very minute quantity in perfectly clear diamonds 
to as much as 4% in boart and carbonado. This ash is fownd 
to consist of oxide of iron, silica, magnesia, lime, and some- 
times alumina and oxide of titanium. That these oxides exist 
as such in the diamond before it is burnt there can, I think. 
be httle doubt, as sometimes they can be seen as coloured specks 
inside the diamond. 

In describing the Cullinan Diamond Sir William Crookes 
speaks of brown specks of what may be oxide of iron, and he 
talks of diamonds being coloured by the same or similar oxides. 
Whether the colouring matter in man}^ brown diamonds is dise 
to oxide of iron may be a question. I have, however, certain 
proof of the existence of both proto- and peroxide of iron in some 
pieces of carbonado which I examined some years ago. Some 
small splinters were carefully cleaned and powdered in a mortar 
and the powder thrown into pure boiling hydrochloric acid 
which was carefully covered up from the air. After boiling fo-r 
half an hour the liquid became quite yellow and it was then 
found to contain iron both as protochloride and as perchloride, 
proving that the iron existed in both conditions in the carbonado, 
probably as the black magnetic oxide. That being so. it is. 
speaking chemically, impossible to suppose these oxides ot iron 
embedded in this carbonaceous substance, and exposed to, say, 
no more than a red heat, and yet to remain unaltered. The 
peroxide would have been reduced to the protoxide with the 
formation of carbon monoxide, which latter would have reduced 
it farther to the metal. This conclusion, I must add, is on the 
assumption that water, or water vapour, is absent. In the 
presence of water or steam, the iron, especially if finely divided, 
would, at a red heat, or even at a much lower temperature, be 
oxidised to the magnetic oxide. That, however, would not 
prevent the carbonaceous material being acted on and oxidised 
if the temperature were high enough : and it is probable that, 
under certain conditions, oxide of iron, in presence of carbon- 
aceous materials and water, or steam, might act as a carrier of 
oxygen to the carbon. In this connection I have thought that 
the geologists are sometimes not sufficiently careful in drawii-ig 
inferences in matters chemical. As I wish later on to make reference 
to the production of graphite from fossils in of local and 
regional metamorphism, I will here just mention an instance. 
Sir Archibald Geikie in his Geology, Second Edition, in treating 
of regional metamorphism in the Ardennes says : — 

" Renard, however, points out that the eruptive rocks are really absent, 
and that the association of minerals proves that the metamorphosed 
rocks could not have been softened by a high temperature, as supposed 


ihv Dumont, otherwise the simultaneous presence of graphite and siUcates, 
with protoxide iron bases, such as mica, hornblende, &c., would certainly 
I'lave given rise at least to a partial production of metallic iron." 

,;,Siich reasoning, I submit, would only hold good in the absence 
of water ; in its presence, and it almost certainly was present, 
the iron would be re-oxidised again to the black oxide, with 
liberation of hydrogen. 

,:..In the case of diamonds found in eclogite some of them have 
evidently .crystallised on the garnets and taken the form of the 
latter. As garnets can be meltvcd at a full red heat, at least 
;thpse containing oxides of iron, we must assume in the case of 
dianjpnds found crystallised on them and taking their form, 
th^t such diamonds, in the course of their formation, could 
not have been exposed to a temperature sufficient to have melted 
the . garnets on which they were crystalhzing. 
.^.:It is often stated that diamonds and garnets must have had 
a similar origin because they are often found together, and we 
find such authorities as Professor Bonney. Mr. Waldemar Lindgren, 
ape} others, declaring eclogite and other garnetiferous rocks to 
be the matrix of the diamond. It is true that, where diamonds 
are found, there also you will generally find garnets, but the 
converse does not hold good, as there are hundreds of localities 
all over the globe where garnets are found that are destitute of 
diamonds, even where carbonaceous materials are also present. 
As regards the presence of abundant garnets in the pipes 
of the South African Diamond Mines it must be assumed that 
they were formed in the blue ground, as no sufficient source of 
such a quantity of garnets has been found in the adjacent rocks. 
Their formation in the pipes is quite analogous to what we know 
of their formation in many parts of the world where local and 
regional metamorphism has prevailed. 

Some diamonds contain angular fragments of other minerals. 
The angular character of these latter shows that the diamonds 
containing them could never, during their formation, have been 
exposed to a temperature sufficient to melt those foreign en- 
closures. One diamond is recorded as containing a piece of 
gold leaf. Some are said to have been found containing bituminous 
materials. Others undergo a change of colour on heating, and 
it is supposed that their colour in that case is due to some organic 
compound ; or, if not, then due to a hydrated compound, 
such as oxide of iron, which becomes dehydrated on heating. 
This idea gains some credibility from the fact that some diamonds, 
which on heating change their colour, gradually regain it again 
on cooling. 

..The presence of most, if not all, the foreign inclusions in dia- 
monds that I have enumerated would seem to prove conclusively 
that the diamonds containing them could not have been formed 
at. .a very high temperature. 

Regarding the production of diamonds from molten iron, I 
think that the facts I have mentioned are on the whole destructive 
of that theory, but I will now mention some others that I have 
long considered are antagonistic to it. Let us take the relative 


specific gravities of molten iron and diamond. Tlie specific 
gravity of molten iron is over 7, that of diamond 3"5. If, then, 
the diamonds in the South African Mines had been formed in 
molten iron, we should expect that as soon as a diamond of, say, 
two or three carats' weight were formed, that is, as soon as a 
stone had attained a size sufficient to enable it to overcome 
the viscosity of molten iron, it would rise to the surface of the 
molten mass, and thus be to a considerable extent removed from 
its sphere of action. This brings us to the question as to the 
conditions under which such masses of molten iron were supposed 
to be produced. Masses of molten iron deep down in the earth, 
as supposed by this theory, would be pretty much in the same 
condition as molten iron in a blast furnace, covered over by a 
certain thickness of molten olivine rock : because, if the iron 
were at a high temperature, the rock, containing a certain 
l^roportion of iron silicates, which lower the melting point — would 
necessarily also be in a molten condition. The specific gravity 
of such a rock would be near that of the diamond, olivine being 
3'3 to 3*5, and garnet from 3 to 4'5. If, then, according to this 
theory, masses of molten iron formerly existed deep down at the 
roots of the diamond mines, their temperature was such that 
they were probably overlaid by olivine or other similar rock, 
also in a molten condition. Under such circumstances it would, 
I submit, be impossible for diamonds of such large size as are 
frequently founcl in the mines to be formed, because as soon 
as they had attained even a few carats in size their buoyancy 
over that of the molten iron in which they were immersed would 
cause them to float to the surface, and probably also to pass into 
the molten rock above. Once out of the sphere of action they 
would not only cease to grow, but they would in turn be them- 
selves attacked by the molten rock, and destroyed in the way 
indicated by Leipsic experiments. It has also been objected 
to the molten iron theory that only minute diamonds could be 
formed in that way, because, in the experiments made on those 
lines, the diamonds only began to form at the moment of solid- 
ification of the iron. I have not, however, made use of that 
objection, because it seems to me if there is anything in the theory 
that its advocates may claim that the diamonds were not 
formed at the moment of solidification only, but that they were 
formed by the excess of carbon crystallizing from the molten 
iron as the latter cooled down from a very high temperature to 
the solidifying point. There are other objections to the molten 
iron theory, some of which have been noted by Mr. Gardner 
Williams in his book on the Diamond Mines of South Africa ; 
and I quite agree with him as to the difficulty, if not impossibility 
of diamonds of any size being made by this method. 

Destructive criticism in this, as in other matters, is as we know, 
generally easier than to provide a sufficient explanation of the 
difficulties of the problem, so we may now very naturally ask 
for some other theory in place of those rejected. If diamonds 
were formed in the mines when the contents were in a mudlike 
condition can w^e give an acceptable explanation of the modus 


Operandi ? To begin with, whence came the carbon necessary 
lor the formation of the diamonds, and in what form was it ? 
We ran only enumerate such sources of carbon as we know actually 
exist in the mines, but of course other sources may previously 
have existed, the evidence of which is now lost. The possibility 
of the carbonaceous shales supplying the carbon has apparently 
been put asicfe by the South African geologists, on the ground 
that some diamond mines evince no trace of having been overlaid 
by the shales. The known possible sources of carbon then are ; 
firstly, carbon dioxide and carbonates. Carbon dioxide is known 
to be abundantly given off from volcanoes in the solfatara stage, 
besides being freely evolved from the mud volcanoes that exist 
on a small scale at the present day. It has been found, as 
I have mentioned, in the liquid condition in the cavities of some 
diamonds, and also in other minerals. It occurs in the form 
of carbonates both in the blue ground itself and in the secondary 
veins within and outside the mines. If not derived from the 
decomposition of other carbonate "> deep down in the mines, it may 
be assumed to be derived from the decompo ition of carbonaceous 
materials that previously existed in the mines, and therefore, to indi- 
cate the possible existence of such materials at a stage when the mines 
were in their heyday of activity. Some years ago traces of hydrocar- 
bons were found by Sir Henry Roscoe in the blue ground from Ue 
Beers, and recovered by treating the powdered blue with ether and 
evaporating. We must, I presume, suppose that this hydro-carbon- 
aceous substance was present in the blue at the time it solidified. 
For myself, I think that it may originally have been derived 
from pieces of shale that were always falling into the open mines 
before their final cessation of activity. This shale is, and no 
doubt then was, decomposable, as is shown by its decomposition 
when exposed to the weather. At one time^ before the mines 
had got below the horizon of the shales trouble was caused by 
such decomposition, which on one occasion led to an explosion 
of marsh gas liberated from the decomposing shales. This 
decomposition of the shales may also have been the source of the 
paraffin which Sir William Crookes says is sometimes found in 
the Kimberley well water ; and, which, when it occurs in the 
mines, Sir William ascribes to his heated masses of iron when 
acted on by water or steam : but, which, I submit, may have 
this less far-fetched explanation. 

Mr. Crardner Williams mentions another deep shaly rock, lying 
below the quartzite, which seems to contain organic matter. But 
the blue ground itself contains a minute proportion of carbon, 
in the form of graphite, mixed with minute diamonds. When 
it is taken, powdered, and acted on by acids to dissolve the mineral 
constituents, a little insoluble residue, consisting of minute 
diamonds and graphite, is left behind. This is a most interesting 
fact, as showing that the graphite is fairly evenly distributed 
throughout the blue. Graphite has been found grown into 
the diamonds themselves as I have previously mentioned. The 
relation of this graphite, when present in diamonds, to the dia- 
monds themselves. I will consider later. 


One of the most notable features in both local and regional 
metamorphism is the conversion of much of the organic material 
of the fossils that may be present into graphite. The fossils 
may have undergone that change just where they lie, in which 
case the graphite takes the form of the fossils ; or, if the graphite 
is found segregated into beds, or veins, it is supposed to have 
been preceded by beds of coal. Occasionally anthracite has 
been converted into graphite, but only in such cases apparently 
by contact metamorphism at a high temperature, whereas in 
the cas€ of the graphite that is ordinarily found replacing fossils 
in the metamorphosed areas, we have no reason to suppose that 
such change was ever accompanied by a very high temperature. 
Now, there is every reason to believe that if we had a fom- 
])aratively easy method of making graphite the problem of manu- 
facturing diamonds would be practically settled, as we have only 
to bring enough pressure to bear on the material at the time 
of formation to get diamonds instead of graphite. Speaking 
of soft diamonds and hard graphite. Sir William Crookes declares 
that they are in many respects alike, and that the difference 
seems to be one of pressure at the time of formation. 

There is undoubtedly a pretty close relation between graphite, 
which crystallizes in the hexagonal system, and diamond, which 
crystallizes in the cubical system. There is also some relation 
between amorphous carbon and graphite, though probably not 
nearly so close as in the case of diamond and graphite. Un- 
fortunately it is almost as difficult to form graphite as diamonds, 
at least in such a way that we can easily manipulate it. More- 
over, to obtain diamonds of any size from graphite, at the moment 
of formation, it would have to be in a form permitting free 
motion in its particles — in a word it would probably have to 
be in a liquid form. The material would either have to be a 
liquid itself or dissolved in some other liquid. I exclude gases. 
or a mixture of such, as I fail to see how in that case, water or 
the other inclusions I have mentioned as being found in diamonds, 
could have been caught up in them. 

There is, as we know, a theory to the effect that the dia- 
monds in the mines were formed by the transformation of 
graphite. This brings us to the consideration of the relationship 
that exists between the graphite found enclosed in diamonds 
and the diamonds themselves. Were the diamonds formed 
from graphite always present in the mine, and is the portion 
of graphite we find present in some diamonds simpl\/ a residue 
that has not been converted into diamond ? Or, have both 
the graphite and the diamond been produced by some common 
origin from some other kind of carbonaceous material, and in 
the course of the transmutation of the latter into diamond, did 
some hitch in the perfect conditions occur resulting in'j^the pro- 
duction of graphite instead of diamond ? Or. finally, were the 
conditions for the production of diamonds imperfect, so that 
at first graphite was produced and then, when the conditions 
had improved, diamond ? I cannot allow that the graphite 
was produced in the diamond by the latter being, exposed to 


great heat, or some such agency- And it is very difficult to 
see how diamond or graphite might be produced almost simul- 
taneously by some slight change in the conditions, whereby, now 
the one, and then the other, were formed ; so I am bound to 
conclude that the graphite found in any particular diamond existed 
before the latter was formed. As regards the theory that the 
diamonds were formed from the graphite I was at one time 
greatly enamoured of it, but I have reluctantly been obliged 
to throw it aside. I have made miany scores of experiments 
to settle that particular question alone, carried out for months 
and years, because I returned to the idea again and again, but 
I have entirely failed with it. Not only have I subjected graphite 
to such treatment as I calculated it might have met with in the 
mines, exposing it to a temperature ranging up to a red heat, 
and in presence of water or water vapour, oxides or silicates of 
iron, silicate of magnesium, powdered garnets, and so on : and 
to a pressure extending up to well nigh 1,000 atmospheres, but 
I have not only used ordinary graphite, but also graphite ob- 
tained from cast iron, and graphite obtained from molten iron 
cooled directly in cold water. Also, thinking the oxidised forms 
of graphite more amenable, such as graphitic oxide, I have tried 
them all, varying the conditions, of course, to suit, but in no case 
has there been any approach to diamond. I, therefore, conclude 
that the diamond in the South African Mines was not formed 
from the graphite which we find associated with it. 

I have tried to imitate the production of graphite in nature by 
subjecting various organic materials that might be supposed to be 
present in fossils to such conditions as I thought would be in opera- 
tion in cases of regional metamorphism, even to the extent of adding 
fluorine, boracic acid, and so on, to the materials operated on, as 
these substances are supposed to take part in metamorphic action, 
but in most cases without result : and I conclude that one reason 
for failure is that probably nature's operations took place very 
slowly, extending, in the case of regional metamorphism, over 
many years, or perhaps many centuries. And I fear that even 
if we knew at this moment nature's method of making diamonds 
the brief span of human life might compel us to modify it to 
suit our limitations. I am persuaded, however, that the mode 
of origin of the diamonds in the mines was not. in its general 
character, very dissimilar to the production of graphite in regional 
metamorphism, but that probably the pressure was greater. 
and the parent carbonaceous material was in a more liquid con- 
dition, the water, or steam, present in the mud volcanoes, 
contributing to the mobility of the mass. 

Since there are so many gaps in our knowledge of the form- 
ation of the diamond we are compelled to fall back to a certain 
extent on theory. I have already alluded to the relationship 
of the three forms of carbon. Thus, if charcoal is heated to the 
temperature of the electric arc it is converted into graphite. 
Diamond is also converted into graphite in the same way, and 
on the other hand the graphite in cast iron can be converted 
into microscopical diamonds. It is a chemical axiom that the 


molecules of the various forms of carbon must be very complex, 
because if not, carbon with its low atomic weight ought to be 
a gas. or at least a liquid, if we allow the possibility of its 
tetrad valency modifying its state. There is the strongest reason 
to believe that the elementary forms of carbon contain at least 
six atoms to the molecule, and graphite and diamond probably 
a multiple, or multiples of that number. Thus amorphous 
carbon can be transformed into mellitic acid. Graphite also 
can be partly transformed into mellitic acid by treating the residue 
obtained from graphitic oxide with oxidising agents, though only 
apparently after its molecule has undergone considerable degrad- 
ation. The chemical deportment of diamond shows, as Briihl 
points out, that it cannot have any double bonds in its molecule, 
whereas graphite almost certainly has such, as is evinced by the 
formation of graphitic o.xide, (S'c. So far, then, as theory may 
help us in the formation of diamonds we may take those deductions 
into account. The dil^culty with carbon is not to get the atoms 
linked together but to prevent them doing so, or, rather to 
prevent them doing so in the wrong way. My experiments, and 
I have made many, many hundreds, have shown me that once 
the carbon atoms are linked up into one of the modifications 
of amorphous carbon, or into the form of ordinary graphite (please 
note that I say ordinary graphite) it is most difficult, if not im- 
possible, to transform them into another form, excepting of course 
at a very high tem.perature, when no doubt the molecular structure 
has a tendency to be broken up. Hence, in our experiments, 
not only must we aim at forming a special kind of molecular 
structure, but it is very important that the carbon atoms, as 
they are liberated, shall be free to associate themselves in the 
way we wish. And it is a curious fact that, in those experi- 
ments which have succeeded in forming minute diamonds, the 
carbon atoms, to begin with, have, so to speak, been free from 
other entanglements. Even in molten cast iron the carbon 
atom may exist unconnected with other carbon atoms, as metal- 
lurgists tell us it exists as FcsC in the solid iron. The formation 
of minute diamonds by the electrolysis of chloride of carbon, 
and by the action of sulphur on carbide of iron in closed vessels. 
makes use of carbon compounds in their sim]:)lest form. I have 
thought, also, that the stage at which the specific heats of the 
three modifications of carbon approach each other, viz., at a 
temperature near 600° C, may have an important bearing on 
this matter, as undoubtedly some intramolecular change then 
takes place. As we know graphite is obtained at a certain stage 
in the manufacture of caustic soda, and is supposed to result 
from the decomposition of some ferro-cyanide of sodium present. 
It is also said to be present in the black residue resulting from 
the decomposition of pure hydrocyanic acid. Such compounds 
are endothermic, and it may be supposed that at the moment 
of decomposition the atoms are for an instant raised to a high 
temperature, though the temperature of the mass does not rise 
much. At one time I experimented much with acetylene gas, 
dissolved in water rmder a high pressure, as such a gas might 


very well be supposed to have been present in the mines during 
their active stage. It contains a very large amount of latent 
heat but is open to two serious objections. Under a high pressure. 
and as the temperature rises, it rapidly polymerises into benzene; 
and unless it i^ mixed with a considerable quantity of an inert 
gas it is spontaneously explosive. 

Every now and then we hear of processes adopted whereby 
diamonds have been formed by electricity. I tried this only once 
many years ago. but I am so convinced that it is practically 
impossible that I never now attempt it. The reason why it is 
impossible is, of course, because diamond is a non-conductor of 
electricity. Although minute diamonds have been formed in 
that way, crystals of any size cannot be expected, because as 
soon as a slight coating of diamond is formed on the electrode 
the current is stopped at that point. The latest thing in this 
line is, we are told, the electrolysis of carbide of calcium in the 
electric furnace. Unless the diamond is a better conductor of 
electricity at that temperature than it is at ordinary temperatures, 
this process is also bound to fall. 

The presence of iron in almost all diamonds suggests that possibly 
it may have taken some part in the formation of diamonds. Thus 
I have supposed that oxide or silicate of iron in the presence 
of water and carbonaceous matter at a red heat might so act. 
We may suppose the iron to be first reduced to metal by the carbon, 
with another portion of which it might combine to form a 
carbide of iron ; this, in presence of water or steam, would 
be immediately decomposed into the magnetic oxide and a 
hydrocarbon. Those two would in turn probably mutuallv 
decompose again and perhaps at the moment give us carbon 
in an endothermic form that under suitable physical conditions 
of pressure, and so on, might form diamond. Of course all 
such theorising has to be subjected to the test of experim.ent 
and I may say that I have made a very large number of ex- 
periments to test such plausible theories. And though truth 
lies at the bottom of a well, and only those who have spent 
years over such experiments can tell how very deep in this 
case that well is, the history of all science shows us that we shall 
probably reach the bottom of it if we probe long enough. 

I will conclude this paper b}^ formulating the conditions under 
which I think diamonds were formed in nature. 

First — The various foreign inclusions found in diamonds, taken 
in connection with what we know of the chemical deportment 
of diamond at high temperatures in the i^resence of such enclosures, 
makes it probable that such diamonds could not have been pro- 
duced at temperatures much, if anything, above a moderate 
red heat, or, say, from. 600° to 800° or 900° C. 

Second — That the production of various minerals and of graphite 
from fossils in cases of local and regional metamorphism is ana- 
logous to what may have taken place in the diamond mines, 
during their period of activity, excepting that in the case of 
the latter, the conditions were much more specialised and the 
pressure probably greater. In both cases several minerals have 


lieen produced in common, such as mica, garnet, tourmaline, 
.graphite, and so on. though owing to the very special conditions 
prevailing in the diamond mines the number and variety of 
the minerals is much in excess of what is usually found in ordinary 
metamorphic areas. 

Third — The entire absence of diamonds from unaltered volcanic 
rock and their presence only in such rocks after they had under- 
gone metamorphisra, together with the presence in the diamonds 
occasionally of water, or of minerals containing water, tells strongly 
in favour of the diamonds having been formed in the mines 
after the latter had reached the mud volcano stage. Did time 
permit many other facts, tlian those already mentioned, might 
be put forward in sup})ort of this view. I will give only one 
more. In the various experiments undertaken to prove the 
nature of the diamond it was sometimes found that the ash re- 
maining behind retained the exact form of the diamond, if 
the combustion was carried out carefully. As that ash is com- 
posed of various oxides it is a fair assumption that those oxides 
were present in the mud-like surroundings and became, by 
contact, entangled in the diamond during its growth. Such 
perfect interspersing of those foreign enclosures could hardly 
occur if the surroundings were not quite mobile, that is, liquid. 
Such a liquid could scarcely be other than water, or some 
hydrocarbon, excluding, of course, the molten iron idea. If 
the temperature were anywhere near a moderate red heat the oxides 
of iron, at least, would be almost certainly decomposed by 
prolonged contact with a hydrocarbon. So that by a kind of 
O.E.D., we are bound to fall back on water or water vapour 
as practically the only other fluid present. I am not forgetting 
of course, that above a temperature of some 365° C. water is 
necessarily a vapour, but it has been shown by Daubree and 
-others in their experiments that supposing the pressure is suf- 
ficiently great, the dense water vapour acts in many respects 
more or less as a liquid. Moreover, in the presence of water 
vapour, at temperatures above the critical point, and under great 
pressure, many substances act differently to what they do under 
ordinary conditions. Thus, I find that hydrocarbons belonging" 
to both the paraffin and the aromatic series may be heated 
in closed vessels in presence of water to temperatures m^uch 
higher than they would endure under ordinary conditions 
without undergoing decomposition. Other substances such, for 
instance, as ferrous oxalate, which in the dry condition decomposes 
under 200° C, can, I find, be heated in a closed vessel with 
water up to a low red heat and not undergo the slightest decom- 

Fourth — There can be no doubt that a high pressure is one 
of the necessary conditions under which diamonds have been 
formed in nature. This is shown, inter alia, by their action on 
polarised light, and by the presence of liquified carbon dioxide 
in their cavities ; and it is further borne out by experiments 
with molten cast iron. How much such pressure may have 
amounted to it is v^ery difficult to say. In the case of diamonds 


containing liquid carbon dioxide in their cavities at the orchnary 
temperature, we can say that, if they had been formed at a 
very moderate red heat, the pressure must have reached some 
300 atmospheres at that temperature, and was possibly much 
more. Sir William Crookes has shown that the residue remaining 
after the explosion of cordite in closed vessels, where the tem- 
perature was calculated to exceed 3,000° C, and the pressure 
to equal 50 tons on the square inch, contained minute diamonds. 
Had the experiment been carried out at the ordinar}- pressiae 
the carbon in the ash would have remained as graphite only. 

Fifth — As regards the carbonaceous source from which dia- 
monds were derived, one can only speculate as to its character, 
with little else to guide one. I have mentioned carbon dioxide 
and carbonates, but a very lengthy series of experiments, carried 
out on carbon dioxide both in the liquid condition, in the condition 
of a gas, and dissolved in water, as well as in the condition of 
various carbonates, has failed to give me any assurance that it 
was a possible source of the diamond. Carbonaceous sub- 
stances, soluble and insoluble in water, hydrocarbons belonging 
both to the paraffin and aromatic series, and a very large number 
of other substances containing carbon, have all been subjected to 
experiment and all so far with negative results. It is possible, 
of course, that in some of those experiments the conditions may 
have been at fault, or that they were not continued long enough 
to give any positive results ; and also, perhaps, that any very 
minute diamonds that may have been formed may have been 
overlooked. As regards the use of very high temperatures such 
as are obtained in the electric furnace, many experimenters 
evidently think that success lies in that direction, although in 
face of the facts I have mentioned it cannot be allowed that 
nature has made use of such high temperatures in forming the 
diamond. In experiments at such high temperatures the great 
difficulty lies in apphdng sufficient pressure, because, while the 
temperature of the electric furnace will convert all forms of 
carbon into graphite, pressure, probably very considerable, will 
be needed to convert the graphite into diamonds. I have 
spoken of the formation of graphite in certain exi)eriments. 
even at the ordinary temperature, and, certainly, nature did 
not make use of very high temperatures in the formation of 
graphite from fossil remains in case of regional metamorphism : 
I have alluded to the use of endothermic compounds in the 
various experiments ; I have also expressed the opinion that 
if we had a convenient method of making graphite we have simply 
to modify the physical conditions to obtain diamond insteacl. 
The use of suitable endothermic compounds to accomplish this 
object would, to all intents and purposes, be practically adopting 
the principle of the electric furnace, only instead of applying 
a high temperature as in the case of the furnace we shoulcl 
use compounds that would confer a very high temperature 
on the atoms of carbon at the moment they are set free, whilst 
the temperature of the general mass would remain at a moderate 
amount only. 


By P. Targett Adams, M.R.C.S., D.P.H. 

The subject matter of my discourse is to many, perhaps, a very 
famihar one. My excuse for asking for its consideration— a very 
commonplace one — will, I am sure, be put on one side when the 
plea is raised of the supreme importance and urgency of this 
problem to both the present and future generations of children 
and, through them, ultimately to the State. 

With the advancing conditions of the times comes the ever- 
increasing complexity of social life, its increasing strain upon the 
individual, its overwhelming artificiality imposing so many con- 
ditions upon those who will live, if they can but survive the intensity 
of the struggle for existence, based as such survival must be upon 
simple fitness of health, intellect and wholesome environment. 

I need not labour an insistence upon the value and importance 
of these facts, but proceed to indicate how the principles under- 
lying the art of living may be best taught by the teacher. The 
general necessity for a more careful and systematic consideration 
and practice of Hygiene as applied to school life relative to the 
physical and mental improvement of the English race was brought 
most prominently before that public as the result of a Government 
Commission of Enquiry into the alleged physical deterioration 
(or the contrary) of the English people living in Great Britain. 
Attention had some years previously been given to this matter by 
certain of the more thoughtful sanitarians in that country and 
other European countries too, but the Royal Commission referred 
to focussed observation upon the necessity for an immediate 
attention to its national importance, and from that date the so- 
called " school " hygiene has taken a foremost position in English 
School Educational practice. It came tardily, no doubt, but once 
its advantage was recognised it has never tarried in its progress. 

Among the South African Colonies, our own, together with (in 
part) the Transvaal have commenced to direct attention to its 
importance, although, so far as I am aware, the remaining colonies 
in this sub-continent have taken no public action in the direction 
of the systematic teaching of hygiene in schools, nor have they 
instituted the practice of a medical inspection of their school 
children. In the Orange River Colony we have attempted this 
task (and with some success) by instituting a course of systematic 
instructions of school teachers in the principles of the laws of 
health, together with their special application to schools and 
scholars, such knov/ledge being a compulsory qualification of all 
future school teachers. This the Minister and Director of Educa- 
tion organised, and insisted upon with conspicuous advantage to 
the present and future of school administration. 


I must not be misunderstood to infer that a very complete or 
even systematic teaching or practice of School Hygiene in its 
entirety has been carried out here at present ; on the contrary, it 
has barely commenced, yet I believe we have got somewhat further 
on the right road than some of our neighbours who have done 
nothing or next door to nothing ; and yet we are only upon the 
threshold, so to speak, of this matter. 

Briefly — in teaching future teachers who are attending their 
preliminary training at the Normal Training College, they are 
afforded a thoroughly sound, practical and theoretical instruction 
in the principles of the laws of health as applied, not only to the 
school period of life in particular, but also to the pre and post 
scholastic periods as well. 

The Director of Education has always worked hand in hand 
with the Public Health Department, co-operating in, and seeking 
its advice from time to time in all matters affecting the health of 
school children and the control of infectious disease amongst them ; 
and with his peculiar perceptivity has grasped at once those in- 
separable facts in the continuity of action with which rests the 
success of combatting, limiting, and controlling those serious 
hindrances to educational progress so frequently brought about 
by the interruptions caused by diseases common to children, and 
their consequent absence from school. 

Unfortunately the mischief to health does not cease with the 
checking of the spread of infectious disease, and its serious inter- 
ference with the progress of education in the schools, but often 
continues with either total impairment or partial destruction of 
one or other of the special senses of hearing and sight which are so 
important as the means of imparting knowledge, apart from actual 
injury to the general health of the sufferers. Most of the infectious 
diseases are, owing to the nature of their origin, also preventable 
diseases, and it is not, as is often believed, essential that every child 
must suffer from them ; for the longer period of time which elapses 
without the child becoming exposed to infection the less liable is 
that child to contract such disease should it become exposed to the 
infection at a subsequent period. The best mental reactions can 
never be obtained from a child with imperfect special and general 

It is obvious also that in so far as the teachers themselves are 
concerned (and suitable teachers are difficult to obtain) the 
association in the school of a number of individuals drawn as they 
are from so large a number and variety of houses must increase 
their risk of contracting communicable disease when focussed in 
the school, and particularly when the harassing character of the 
work involved in skilful and thorough teaching is taken into ac- 
count. Thus the injurious effects of unhealthy school conditions 
re-acts upon the teachers as well as the pupils, and is in itself a 
very important consideration. 

Applied hygiene is not a question for State educational systems 
alone, for its importance is necessarily as great in private as in public 
schools, and its economic results are equally striking in both ; for 
there is no fundamental phj'siological difference between the state 


pupil and the private pupil, and there is no special moral or legal 
privilege vested in the private teacher which entitles him to risk 
or ruin the health and eyesight of his pupils. 

Again, school hygiene does not of necessity involve elaborate 
so-called " physical culture," although these exercises, if carried 
out by a trained instructor and regulated by a competent medical 
inspector, are both desirable and may yield excellent results. It 
should never be forgotten, however, that serious damage may be 
done to individual weakly children by physical overstrain. In the 
absence of such a trained and supervised instructor, the ordinary 
healthy child will derive more benefit from noisy scamper around 
the playground than they will get from a half-hour's ordeal oi 
club-swinging or toe-touching mechanically directed by an un- 
interested and unskilled person. 

Neither does school hygiene of necessity involve " medical; 
inspection," although the latter form of control is necessary for 
the highest and best development of sanitary work (especially is 
this so in large schools) ; for excellent results may be obtained 
where this is absent. Medical inspection has been adopted in the 
Transvaal but not in this Colony at present, as we were of the 
opinion that for financial reasons it would be better to rely upon 
the dissemination of information by educational means rather 
than by the employment of the more expensive although highly 
useful and desirable additional means of skilled inspection. 

Dr. Mackenzie perhaps put the case for the medical inspection- 
of schools and school children excellently and concisely when he 
said that " Education presupposes good health " ; they are parts 
of one problem. Health is essential to education in any sense,. 
physical or mental. 

If it is the case that the conditions of health fitting a child for 
school life and school education cannot be ascertained without 
medical inspection, then medical inspection must become a part 
of school methods. It is simply an additional method of securing 
that, as far as possible, the child shall be put into the state suitable 
for his training. 

The teaching of elementary hygienic principles, therefore, needs 
no apology. It deals with a subject highly interesting and 
supremely important, possessing as it does a high ethical value. 
and when still further combined with its allies domestic economy 
and civics it practically conforms to that science of the method'^, 
of improvement of the race comprised under the term Eugenics., 
the latter science forming the keystone of modern education,, 
towards which all the most advanced educational thinkers are 

The teaching indicated must be simple, direct and rationally 
directed and adapted by local illustrations to local requirements.. 
For instance, it is of little use to fill the heads of children of a 
sparsely-populated colony like ours with the principles governing 
the adoption and management of a modern water carriage system 
of sewage disposal, when but three towns at the present time in 
the Orange River Colony could probably afford to adopt such a 
salutary system. The treatment of smoke nuisances and dangerous;. 

tS4 practice and TEACHIN'G of HYGIEXE IX SCHOOLS. 

trades, when none at j^resent exist, although such matters are of 
very considerable importance to the health of large European 
■centres of population, is at present unimportant here. 

On the other hand, it is always necessary to illustrate and explain 
the advantages of a wholesome drinking water, personal bodily 
•cleanliness, and to illustrate the necessity of baths, toothbrushes, 
iresh air, wholesome and properly-cooked food, exercise, rest, and 
suitable clothing, etc. 

The elder girls (and boys, too) should be taught those few and 
simple rules which bear upon the provision of suitable food and the 
care of infants, together with the reasons for the avoidance of 
impure milk, patent and proprietary foods and medicines, facts 
Oi the very greatest importance, as they may become the means 
of saving the loss of lives of many of the future generations. The 
ignorance prevailing at the present time, and its consequences, 
as illustrated in the large infantile mortality' of so many countries, 
is often based upon the dangerous advice of old women, who know 
intuitively all about these matters because they have buried large 
families, is simply appalling, and at least might be combatted by 
better hygienic education. 

Teachers of hygiene should of necessity have a sound although 
an elementary knowledge of human physiology' and anatomy, as 
such are essentials to the useful comprehension of the exact bearing 
•of sanitary scientific principles. 

But here it must be clearl}- understood that I do not consider 
•even this knowledge necessary in the actual practice of teaching 
the laws of health to children, for it is hardly advisable in at least 
those sensitive and self-conscious children we sometimes meet 
with to direct their attention too carefully to these matters lest 
-such a knowledge produce ideas which in future might lead them 
to become valetudinarians. Such information is, however, as 
essential to the teacher of hygiene, as the knowledge of the working 
parts and movements of a watch is to a watchmaker, and I very 
much doubt whether such matters as deal with ventilation, its 
relation to disease, exercise, the testing and recognition of clefi- 
■ciencies of the special senses of sight and hearing could really be 
made comprehensible to a teacher unless he already had some 
general idea of the anatomical construction and phvsiological 
action of the lungs, heart, brain, eyes and ears. 

Doubtlessl}^ allied scientific knowledge of the general and elemen- 
tary principles of chemistry, physics and even parasitiology are of 
the greatest service towards the understanding of sanitary science, 
and the cause of infectious diseases in both man and the lower 
animals, together with the rationale of disinfection, and the means 
employed for the prevention and spread of disease. This is taught 
to our teachers. 

The importance of a sufficiency of food, clothing, exercise, and 
sleep to a growing child, together with the early recognition and 
necessity for treatment of defective eyesight, hearing, and imperfect 
mental reactions, are obviously essential to both the educationist 
and the child, for, apart from the waste of money and harm done to 
-a scholar so afflicted, it must always be borne in mind that a child 


passes so many hours of its life in school that any improper treat- 
ment therein will increase any deformity or latent predisposition 
such child may possess towards disease ; in fact, its future pro- 
s])erity or premature decay may be largely decided at this period 
of its life. It becomes therefore of imperative importance that every 
means should be adopted to teach and practice principles of whole- 
some living both within and without the school. 

The fact should not be lost sight of that the school is largely the 
}-)]ace wherein the health and future prosperity of generations is 
to be built, and any hereditary tendency towards conditions of 
bodily ill-health favoiuing the growth of disease germs (occasion- 
ally already introduced) may become eradicated. Certainly it 
Jiiust be the duty of all educational authorities at least to see to 
it that no initial introduction of preventable diseases take place 
within their schools, owing to lack of knowledge and neglect of 
such ordinary precautionary preventive measures as can reasonably 
be expected to have been employed by such authorities. 

There is some evidence to show that such bacterial diseases as, 
tor instance, tuberculosis, are distinctly increasing in South Africa 
(including the Orange River Colony), and this is but one of those 
diseases, the receptive foundations of which are not infrequentl}- 
laid during the school age period, to ultimately destroy its victim 
during su1:iscquent adolescence or adult ages. 

Ill-ventilated, dusty, damp and badly-lighted school-rooms 
certainly farv^our the dissemination and progress of that malady, 
as well as most other infectious diseases into the bargain. With 
equal, if not more force, do such unfavourable surroundings affect 
the health of children at home. Yet the only rational way to 
remedy this state of affairs is to teach the children at school the 
importance of good ventilation, personal cleanliness, wholesome 
food and exercise, together with the dangers which accrue from 
bad habits such as intemperance and so forth. 

Such knowledge and good habits once formed improve the general 
morale, discipline and comfort of the children at the school, and 
become indeliblj- impressed upon them at a period of their lives 
w^hen, owing to their plastic mental and bodily attitude, they may 
be most readily and permanently moulded into the best men and 

Improved cleanliness at home will largely and naturally follow 
when personal tidiness and good habits are insisted upon in the 
school, for it has been very truly stated that " slums " can only 
be prevented by eliminating the " slum makers." Housing 
problems are alwa5'S complicated by the fact that so long as the 
poor are themselves slum-makers so long will any collection of 
their houses be turned into slums. 

Why, therefore, should this country pass through the same 
unfortunate experience, with all its attendant sufferings and mor- 
tality, which has already been the lot of many European countries 
owing largely to want of knowledge or lack of its sufficient applica- 
tion ? Why are we not to profit by the sad experience of others 
in that we may see to it that there is systematic teaching of the 
elements of the laws of health in every school, public or private, 


throughout the country ? Please note that I except none, for 
there is as much, if not more, need for the teaching of the dangers 
of unwholesome living and habits to the native as there is to the 
%vhite man, for the native is the servant of the white man and 
dwells in his immediate neighbourhood, or even within his house 
and, in so far as disease is concerned, giveth him freely of that 
which he hath. 

The teaching of hygiene is made compulsory by the American 
education laws, and by a decree of parliament in Sweden. In 
Holland, Denmark, Italy and Japan it is a subject which is 
systematically taught in schools. 

A recent enactment of the British Parliament has, in addition, 
made the medical inspection of school children compulsory gener- 
ally, and throughout the entire country these medical officers are 
responsible in addition to their primary dutie; (of seeing that 
each scholar is fitted for education), for notice being given to 
the sanitary authorities of any insanitary conditions which may 
exist within the school prejudicial to the health of its community. 

A very similar law has now come into force in the Transvaal, as 
has already been the case for some time past in such countries as 
America, Germany, France, Switzerland, Denmark and Belgium : 
whilst Austria, Norway, Hungary — and even Turkey — are adopting, 
or seriously considering the adoption of, such measures. The 
economy of such action recommends itself, as it is useless to 
educate by unsuitable methods children who are unfitted for such 
a form of education. 

The welfare and health of our little ones is not a matter of creed, 
politics or estate — it is too urgent a matter for the slow processes 
of the dialectician and his disputes, for it contains the vital essence 
&f our future existence, and the survival of our race. To whom, I 
ask, should we appeal ? and from whom (if the advantages be 
but appreciated) are we sure of support in this matter ? It is to 
the women, to the mothers who have so often sacrificed themselves 
for their children, and yet have so often, from want of knowledge, 
been despoiled by death of their dearest treasures to whom thev 
gave birth, owing to some disease arising from artificial feeding, 
impure air, or the kiss of a poor little diphtheritic child. Therefore 
I have presumed to direct attention to this necessity of teaching 
the laws of health as one of the most important subjects in our 
school codes. 

The world-wide educational authorities must recognise the 
uncontrovertible fact that with them rests the power of dissemina- 
tion of this knowledge of the means of self-preservation (which 
they alone can so easily and economically accomplish) of teaching 
those under their charge how to protect, not only themselves, but 
others against the mischief and the financial and physical expenses 
of disease, unwholesome surroundings, and vice, whereby they may 
enjoy the gift to its fullest of the health God gave them, which 
ignorance and sloth will so readily tear from them and theirs should 
they offend against those laws. 

Metaphorically speaking, it might be well to consider the wisdom 
of even casting over-board as jetsam some of the valuable cargo 


from the already overloaded educaLional argosy in order that its 
ships may carry the more essential merchandise I have alluded to ; 
even as flotsam such rare and brilliant gems which the intellectual 
super-cargoes of the past have so justly valued as the most attrac- 
tive acquisitions of learning, but which times have changed and 
the fashions of thought too. The diamond has yielded its secret 
to the chemist, and gems discarded in the past hold preference 
and even necessity to the future " Body Corporate of Adventures " 
who trade in new countries and with new people. 

Bristol never turned out better ships or braver men if you will 
but find the pilots, take the helm and guide them upon their course, 
for, as vv'ith the " Adventures " of old the enterprize will yield 
rich profit. 


— Mr. A. J. C. Molyneux, F.G.S., in vol. 65 (1909) of the Quarterly 
Journal of the Geological Society, traces the extension into Northern 
Rhodesia of the deposits of Permo-carboniferous age that have 
been correlated with the Karroo system of the more southern 
portion of the continent, and goes on to examine into the relation 
of these deposits to the general geology of the country. A genera- 
description is given of the geology of the Luangwa, Lukasashi, and 
Luano Valleys, the Danda Flats and the Lufua River. The rocks 
of the Karroo system in the Cape Colony and Transvaal are com- 
pared with those of Rhodesia, and the several series, in the latter 
case, are individually described. The Basal beds and Boulder 
conglomerates are correlated with the Dwyka series of the southern 
portion of the sub-continent, the Lov/er Matobola Beds with the 
rocks of the Ecca series, the Upper Matobola Beds and Escarpment 
grits corresponding with the Beaufort series, while with the Storni- 
berg series of the south are correlated the Tuli lavas and Batoka 
Basalts together with Forest and Samkoto sandstones, the former 
corresponding to the Volcanic beds of the series and the latter to 
the Cave sandstone (the Bushveld sandstone of the Transvaal). 
The paper is illustrated by half a dozen text figures and a map, 
together with six collotype plates descriptive of the conglomerates 
and other members of the series dealt with. 

THE DAYLIGHT COMET, 1910a.— This comet appears to 
have been first noticed south-west of the sun during the early 
hours of Friday, January 14, by some miners in the Transvaal, 
the first measurement of its position being made by ^Ir. Innes at 
the Transvaal Observatory on the 17th January. With rapid 
apparent motion it passed to the east of the sun, and was thus 
distinctly observable without telescopic aid before sunset on the 
i8th ; both nucleus and tail— the latter being visible to the unaided 
eye for a length of about 20' — possessing an orange-yellow colour. 
A second tail was subsequently developed. Spectroscopic obser- 
vations made at the Lick and Glasgow Observatories revealed 
bright Sodium lines and a hydrocarbon band. 


By J. MoiR, M.A., D.Sc, F.C.S. 

At intervals all through the nineteenth century theoretical 
chemists were engaged in trying to trace out those obscure but 
evident family relationships which exist among the elements, 
the most comprehensive of these schemes being the well-known 
Periodic Lav/. Thousands of pages have been written on relation- 
ships obtained by assuming the atomic weights to be whole members. 
It is evident, however, nowadays that only a proportion of the 
whole number of elements have integral atomic weights, and 
even here, as the author has shown elsewhere,* it becomes necessar 
to assume a unit for the system different from the cnstoma » 
ones (H = I, or O = i6), in order that the elements in question 
shall exhibit an exact integral relationship. 

There is undoubtedly a ' regularity in irregularity ' of a most 
curious and fascinating character amongst the experimental 
atomic weights, but it is only recently that determinations have 
become accurate enough to give any hope of tracing genetic con- 
nexions from the figures ; since, apart from the iigures, we have 
nothing to guide us towards the constitution of the atoms except 
such analogies as we can draw from molecular constitutions {e.g. 
the configuration of the rubidium atom must closely approximate 
to that of the ammonium complex). L'ntil a few years ago, how- 
ever, we had no clue regarding the nature of the sub-elementary 
bricks out of which atomic edifices are made ; but this clue has 
been given us by Ramsay's discovery of the spontaneous formation 
of helium from several of the higher radio-active elements : and 
indeed there appears to be little doubt that radium and polonium 
are directly connected, by means of helium., with lead and bismuth. 

The first step in the author's new work on this subject is that 
already mentioned, the discovery of a basis of calculation on 
which many of the atomic weights become whole numbers and 
therefore, very probably, of the same parentage. A brief notice 
of this will suifice here, for the benefit of those who cannot obtain 
access to the original papers. The author assumed the existence 
of an intermediate link between the electron and the atom of 
hydrogen, in the shape of a sub-atom (apparently 15 electrons) 
of atomic weight o'oogo, and secondh/ that this entity is the actual 
physical cause of valency. Each univalent ' element ' contains 
one, each bi-valent element two, and so on. of this sub-atom, 
for which the author proposes the symbol ^/. The results are 
(i) that the atomic weights become whole numbers plus multiples 
of 1^1 corresponding to the valency: — thus H = i-|-y(/, He=4,. 
Li = 7-f/;(, C = i2-f-4/i and so on, when the basis of calculation 
is shifted from = 16 to o = i6-f 2;u = i6"0i8, or, what comes to 

*Journ. Cliem. Sec, Lond., Dec, 1909, and Proc Roy. Soc, S.A., 1909. 


the same thing, the unit is He/4 : (2) that atomic weights- 
may sometimes be variable with valency ; thus when oxygen 
becomes tetravalent its atomic weight is 16.036, the increase 
having been taken from" the other element which made it 
tetravalent ; again NH3 + HCI contain 8^/, but NH4 CI by analogy 
with NaCl requires iOf.t. This scheme, however, does not include 
more than half the well-known elements, but when applied to 
the others gives the curious result that their atomic weights be- 
come reduced to whole numbers plus exact tenths. These elements- 
therefore have a different parentage, probably most simply ex- 
plicable by assuming the existence of two farther sub-atoms| oi 
atomic Vv^eight 0-5 and o'l. Thus Cl = 35J- + f<, Ba = i37-| + 2/(- 
Gl = 9-i+2/(, Mg = 24-3+2/( and so on. One of these is probably 
identical with coronium, the extraterrestrial element known tr> 
be lighter than h^^drogen. 

This reduction of the atomic weights to whole numbers (with 
or without exact tenths) simplifies the problem considerably — 
in fact, if any non-arbitrary relationship between the occurrence?- 
of the tenths could be discovered, the problem might be said to be- 

I therefore pass on to discuss the inter-relationship amongst 
the whole numbers, in which I have the aid of much calculative 
research, done in the last hundred years. An excellent summary 
of this appears in F. H. Loring's paper in the Chemical Nen's.^' 
The most important point is of course well known, 7,'^-., the occur- 
rence of numbers of the forms 4)1 and 4W — i. I have also noticed 
that nearl}' all the numbers of the form yn occur. These three 
classes, if taken to exclude all fractions, will account for all the- 
atomic v/eight numbers except 13 : and these 13 themselves are not- 
erratic, being classifiable into {a) 3 monads (H, Rb, Au), {b) 3 dyads- 
(Gl, Zn, Ba), (c) 3 from group VHI. (Ni, Ru, Ir), (d) 2 pentads '{Cb. 
Ta) and (e) 2 rai-e-earths (Y, Gd). We thus appear to have two 
main families of elements, and six small deviations in addition :. 
thus, the apparent polymers of helium are C, O, Ne, Mg. Si.. 
S, A, Sc, Ti, Cr, Fe, Ge,^Br, Mo, Ag, Cd, Sb, Te, Ce, Nd, Eu. Tb,. 
Er, Yb, W, Hg, TL Bi and Th : those of the form 411 — i (or 
4/.' +3, helium plus zoikon*) are Li, B, F. Na, Al, P, CI, K. \ , 
Mn, Co, Cu, As, Se, Kr, Sr, Zr ?, Rh, Pd, In, Sn. I, X, La. Sa. 
Lu ?, Os, Pt, Pb, and Ra : again, those of the form yn (when 
not included in 4// — i) are N, Ga, Cs, Dy, Tm, Em (217) and 
U. Calcium and praseodymium have not been placed in the 4W 
series, their places being taken by the nearly isomeric argon and 
cerium : they themselves probably belong to classes {b) and {e) 
above respectively. These minor families seem to be of the form 
4;i-|-i, 4«-fi|, and 411 +2. 

The occurrence of exact relationships between atomic weights- 
has been noticed — see Loring's paper, for example. The following 
are new : some are so striking as to exclude coincidence : (i) 

(Br=Cl2+9-oo=79-92, (2) ICl2=Fo Br,,=i97-84, (3) Hg=Cd Sr=200-c> 

(l = Clo + 56-00 = 126-92 

*26th Rlarch, 1909, p. 148. 

f Journ. Chemical, r\Ietallurgical and Mining Soc. of S.A., May igug. 


(4) Sn = Si Zr=:ii8-95, (5) Al. S, K, Ca^ Sc, Ti and Cr are exact 
addition-products of glucinum, e.g., Ca = GlP, (6) €1-2 = AP — 
yO'gz, (7) Se2=TeP, (8) Hg = 4 (Ba— Sr). Similar, but not so exact, 
relationships are : (i) Ag F — i26*88 = l, whilst Cu.> = i27"2, (2) Cs F9 
= Rb.; (3) KLi=Nao and KNa. = Rb. (4) Ag = RbNa. (5) Au 
=Ag Y, (6) Ba Sr = Cd2, (7) Ca Sr = Cuo + i, (8) Ca Gl = Mgo + i-, (9) 
Th Ti = Ceo, (10) Sb Ta=:Bi Cb. Other curious coincidences are : 
^[o-^fGl-H) --^^-^ • Zn- .' MgCa+H whilst Sr = CaMg. 

— H ; Ra = BaSr approximately, whilst Ba = CaMgj ; besides 
the well-known multiple connexions among the hexads and 
tetrads— thus S = 0o + , Se = 0,-,-, Te = 0^-, Mo^O, ; so Ti = 
d, Ge^Ce-f-, Sn = Cio— ; alternatively Si might be C He4 and 
Ti = C2He,3 like methane and ethane. Other interesting 
multiple cases are : N = Lio : A = Ne.^ : Fe = N^ ; Mo = 
Tio ; Ra = Cd-, = Fe^ ; U = Sn. : ' Pb = Rh. ;' Ta = Zro ; Ce = Ga.. ; 
X-Zn,>; Br = Ao; Cb-Ps ; Mo = S3; Pd = Cl,; Sb:=Ca,, ; 
Xd = Ti;; ; Os = Cus ; also A = ioHe, Ga = ioLi, Zr = ioGl, Sb = ioC, 
Ce = ioN, Os = ioF, and Hg = ioNe. 

The genetic connexion between the elements is however best 
proved by the existence ,of long series of elements with a constant 
difference from a lower series. Two of these have been well 
known, viz., the differences of about 47 and 88 between the 
rows of the Periodic Table, but the author has noticed that the 
tendency is present from the \-erv start of the elementary series. 

Thus He + ^, = Li : Li -l- 2 = G1 : Gl -f 2 =B 


i i i 

F = 3-fO : = 2-fN : X = 2-rC 
A e, -!- 3 =Xa, 4- 1 J =Mg, + 2| = Al 


Al4-ii=Si, + 22=P,4-i=S.-f3i = C] 

Ca = i4-K.K = 3|-fCl 
Ca-l-4 = Sc. 4-4 = Ti. ^-3= V. -fi = Cr 



Cr4-3 = Mn. 4-i = Fe. -f 3=Co. 

The series from scandium onwards is also a repetition of an 
•earlier series: thus. Sc = Xe4-24. Ti = Mg + 23"8. \'=Al4-24, 
Cr = Si-h23-8, Mn = P + 23-S, Fe = S-f-23-8, Co = Cl4-23-5, Cu-= 
A 4- 23*8. This additive complex resembles magnesium both 
in -atomic weight and, in most cases, by possessing two valencies, 
thus changing triads into pentads and so on. Connection with 
the next series is given by the coincidences: Xi=A4-i8*8, Co = 
XZa 4-18-9 and Ga = V4-i8-8: also Mn = Cl-fi9i, Cu^ScH-ig-i. 
As alseady suggested, Zn may be Mg AIN or Mg CaH, whilst 
Ge is possibly C4 He,; and arsenic PB,. The next series is also 
additive, thus Se = Xi4-20"5, Br = Co-l-2i. Rb = Cu4-22, Sr = 


iLi + 8o iB+8o (N+80 (O+80 

I Zn + 22,Y = Gl + 8o,Zi-= I Ga + 2i,Cb= I Ge + 2i,Mo= ( As +21, 
Ru = Br + 2i, Rh = Ki- + 2i, and Pd = Rb + 2i. Another additive 
series follows, but derived from a lower source, thus : Ag = 
Ca + 68. Cd = Sc + 68-3, In=Ti + 67i, Sn = V + 68. Sb = Cr + 68, 
I = Co +68, X-Cu+671 Cs^Zn + e'yh, Ba = Ga + 67* and Ce = 
Ge + 67|. This 68 complex has a valency of-i. A connection 
between the last two families is seen in Mo = Si+68 = As + 2i. 
and other cases of the well-knovvn 47 difference. The highest 
elements are next connected b}? the 88 difference, e.g., Ta = Cb + 88, 
W = Mo+88 and so on; but they can also be connected with 
the very lowest series, from which they differ by 181 (the atomic 
weight of Ta), thus: Os=TaGl, Ir = TaC, Pt=TaN, Au=TaO, 
Hg = TaF, Tl=TaNa, Bi=TaAl, Ra = TaSc and Th=TaV. 
Uranium is quite probably Ra Hc;;, and radium-emanation 
PI) He,. 

It only remains to point out another curious type of regularity. 
We have seen that HeF, LiO, GIN, and BC = 23. In the same 
way we have BBr, OAs, SCo, KCr, CaV, CSe, GeF, Cu Si Fe CI, 
<}lKr and ZnAl all nearly equal to 91. So Ne CI, NaS, Mg P, 
and Si Al = 55-3 and have a valency-sum =7, like most of the 
foregoing. So KBr, Ca Se, As Sc, Zn Cr. CuMn, — 119. So 
Li CI, Gl S, BP, CSi, NAl, MgO, NaF and Ne,, approximate to 40. 
Even longer series have been matched*. 

To conclude, the following summary of the author's views on 
the constitution of the simpler elements may be of interest. 
Assuming the following sub-atoms : /.( = -og9, c = oioo (? coronium), 
H = i. x = 2, z = 3 (possibly Hx) ; we get H = H^(; He = 4 H=Xo; 
Li = 7H-|-;H = HoZx«; Gl = 9-iH+//o=:Hz2X^(vC : B = z,x^(3; C=Z4/j,; 
N^z^x/./:,; = Z4Xoy((.j ; F = Z:,x.-,/< or possibly OHx — /-( ; Ne = 2oH = 
z,x, ; Na = Li Ne — ^He, and so on. Some obvious difficulties of 
this system appear in the shape of surprising isomerisms, but in 
most cases the author is satisfied that difference of configuration is 
a sufficient explanation. Examples are the isomerism of CO with 
N.,, and of Ca with KH.t 

RUMEX ECKLONIANUS.— According to Andrew Smith the 
dock known by the Kaffirs as i-Dolo lenkonyana. or calf's knee — a 
weed v.'hich " one would hardly imagine to be good for anything " 
— is used by the natives as a remedy for tape-worm, the roots 
being boiled in sweet milk and so administered. This plant, 
Riimex ecklonianiis. Meisner, has been investigated by Messrs. 
F. Tutin, F.C.S., and H. W. B. Clewer on behalf of the Wellcome 
Chemical Research Laboratories, and the results were submitted 
at a recent meeting of the Chemical Society. London. No evidence 
was obtained of the presence of any glucoside. but a small amount 
of essential oil was procured by distillation of an alcoholic extract 
with steam, while Ceryl alcohol, a phytosterol. chrysophanic acid 
and other crystalline substances were isolated. 

* See P. R. Roux ; Jourii. Chem. Met. and Min. Soc. of S.A., July, 1909. 
See 1. Chem. Met. Min. Soc. of S. A ^or September, 1909. 


By the Right Rev. Dr. Chandler. 

The facts of mental heahng are simply an example of the influence 
of mind on body, and the only way in which the inquiry to-day 
differs from the enquiries of the past consists in the different con- 
ceptions which we are getting to hold concerning the nature of the 
mind which thus influences the body. 

We have known for a long time that the mind does affect the 
body in many ways ; and if the mind is being shown to be a wider 
and more complex fact than we had supposed, it will be only 
natural that its influence on the body will also be wider and more 
complex than we had thought. 

We are coming to see that what we generally call mind is only a 
special phase — or section — or application of a consciousness which 
includes it, and very much besides. Consciousness is far wider 
than mind or reason ; mind is a highly specialised sort of conscious- 
ness ; it represents consciousness as narrowed down to the 
attainment of particular objects, as engaged in a particular service. 
As man's life develops, certain needs and interests gain paramount 
impo "tance ; consciousness is therefore focussed on these needs 
and interests, and comes to act simply as the instrument for giving 
effect to them. Other capacities of consciousness are ignored, 
become atrophied through disuse, and can only emerge and prove 
their continual existence with a certain difficulty. 

We compare the mind of civilised people with the mind of un- 
civilised natives, much to the advantage of the former ; and of 
course the civilised mJnd is infinitely superior as a rational and 
cultivated instrument for the attainment of civilised ends. But 
the mind of the native is probably a far more " all-round " mind 
— in particular, a far more receptive mind — taking note of a multi- 
tude of facts which we have habitually ignored and therefore cease 
to perceive, because we have no use for them in our artificial and 
highly specialised existence. It is only children and poets that 
can get back to that wider horizon, that passive receptivity of the 
manifold impressions from without. Take Wordsworth : 

" The eye — it cannot choose but see : 
We cannot bid the ear be still ; 
Onr bodies feel, where'er the}^ be, 
Against or with our will. 

Nor less I deem that there are Powers 
\\'hich of themselves our minds impress ; 
That we can feed this mind of ours 

In a wise passiveness. 

Think you, 'mid all this mighty sum 
Of things for ever speaking, 
That nothing of itself will come. 
But we must still be seeking ? 


— Then ask not wherefore, here, alone, 

Conversing as I may, 

I sit upon this old grey stone. 

And dream my time away. 

Sweet is the lore which Nature brings ; 
Our meddling intellect, 

Alis-shapes the beauteous forms of things : — 
We murder to dissect. 

Enough of Science and of Art ; 

Close up those barren leaves; 

Come forth, and bring with yon a heart 

That watches and receives." 

If we take the mind of a child with its unhmited imaginations and 
questions — the mind of a poet dreaming his time away on an old 
grey stone,^ — the mind of an untutored native blinking in the sun 
before his hut, — the mind of a Boer farmer sitting on his stoep 
with a mind alert and responsive to the movements and sounds 
and manifold life of the veld which passes unnoticed by others — 
the mind of a mystic like S. Terese moving in a world, and receiving 
influences, foreign and strange to the ordinary Christian — we shall 
see many and various forms of a mentality different from that of 
the keen self-assertive intellect of the Johannesburg stock-broker, 
and not perhaps so infinitely inferior as that gentleman fondly 

And this wider sort of mind, which " watches and receives " 
the mind of the child or the poet, is not fully explained as a sur- 
vival of the primitive human mind. We have to go further back 
still to get at its origin. Rudimentary kinds of consciousness have 
been carried up with us in our ascent from lower grades of being, 
and survive, dormant but real, over against that rational intellect 
which is the peculiar achievement of man. This residual con- 
-ciousness (the consciousness which exists along- ide of the rational 
intellec ) consists largely of instincts and capacities w^hich regulate 
the lives of other animals, and which were employed by man in 
his primitive state, but for which he has no time in his present-day 
existence ; modes of receptivitj' and re- action which were natural 
to him in his dreamy childhood, but which are discarded in the 
aggressive, self-assertive, wide-awake condi-tion in which he now 
lives. And further it has been suggested that we must go lower 
down than animal life for the explanation of some ot the phenomena 
of this wider mind. Thus Professor Stewart, in his Myths of 
Plato, speaks of that 

" primeval condition from which we are sprung when life was still as 
sound asleep as death, and there was no time yet," 

and remarks : 

" That we should fall for a while, now and then, from our waking time- 
marking life, into the timeless slumber of the primeval life, is easy to under- 
stand, for the principle solely operative in that primeval life is indeed 
the fundamental principle of our nature, being that ' vegetative part of 
the soul,' which made from the first, and still silentl}^ makes, the assump- 
tion on which our whole rational life of conduct and science rests the 
assumption that life is worth living." 
Thus our instinct of self-preservation, our rooted attachment tO' 


home, the tenacity with which we chng to hfe are derived by this 
w^riter from the primeval principle of vegetative life. 

But I have said enough to illustrate the fact that alongside of 
the active work of the intellect, with which e.g. we study mathe- 
matics or pursue our profession, there is a large dreamy half-con- 
scious tract of mind, not sharpened to a single point like the 
active intellect, but consisting in a multiplicity of mind centres 
diffused throughout the organism, the fact that beside the single 
supreme rational activity which we call our mind, there exist in 
us other forms of consciousness similar to those which accompany 
the growth of the plant or the life of the animal ; and that this 
residual consciousness, however much we may discard or disown 
it, continues to live and work, and does things which the proud 
intellect is unable to do. 

Of course we must not forget that these form.s of feeling and 
instinct, of perception and re-action, which we regard as largety 
our heritage from lower forms of life, are enormously modified b}^ 
their juxta-position with a rational intellect. 

The ultimate unity of our nature which comprehends both the 
intellect and them makes itself felt ; the lower form of mentality 
is still the mentality of the human being, and the general position 
may be described by saying that there exists a de-centralised con- 
sciousness, diffused through the organism, irrational but capable 
of sharing in reason and of listening to it, as Aristotle would say, 
and manifesting itself in a power of receiving impressions, manip^i- 
lating them and re-acting upon them, a power which in our present 
state of ignorance we describe by the convenient word " abnormal." 

Now the relation between these rudimentary forms of conscious- 
ness, this whole plane of the subliminal on the one hand and the 
central reason on the other is one of enormous interest and is 
being investigated under different aspects by both psychology 
and physiology. 

One thing is quite clear, that the history of this relationship 
between subconscious and rational has been a very chequered 
history, and that the reason does not stand at all in the position 
of an absolute despot whose sway there is none to dispute. It 
stands rather in the position of a mediaeval sovereign who exerts 
a precarious and hardly-won control over a mob of turbulent 
vassals who chafe beneath his yoke and are sometimes able to 
throw it off. 

When one of these minor psychical entities gets the upper hand 
we have the phenomenon of secondary personality. 

Sometimes, again, the subconscious mind helps the intellect by 
solving problems which have baffled the intellect. A man goes 
to sleep with his mind full of confused data or elements which can- 
not be satisfactorily interpreted. They are like those blocks 
which, when put together, form a coherent picture. He has puzzled 
over them in vain, but in his sleep the problem is solved with 
perfect ease — the blocks come together in their right connection 
and the work is done. Or again, in purely literary work the sub- 
conscious mind does yeoman's service to the literary man ; in 
fact, according to Mr. Myers, it is the agent in works of genius. 


In what we call genius the ideas which the man is consciously 
manipulating are reinforced by the up-rush of other ideas which 
have shaped themselves apart from his will in deeper regions of 
his being, ideas which have been fused beneath the surface into 
artistic shape, a shape more or less coherent according to the 
degree of control which the author exercises over these contributions 
from the depths. 

And once more, not only does this subconscious mind sometimes 
overthrow the normal intellect and reign in its stead in some form 
of alternate personality, or again help it in its scientific or literary 
work — it also acts at times as a veritable guardian angel in crises 
and dangers which baffle and unnerve the conscious intellect. It 
is the providence which watches over the steps of children, drunk- 
ards and somnambulists, who are directed and safeguarded by an 
infallible instinct in the midst of pitfalls. We read of men who in 
an alarm of fire will act with a strength and agility and a resource- 
fulness to which in their rational life they are utter strangers. 
When once the intellect with its fears, its questions and its calcula- 
tions gives up its futile efforts, the subconscious mind will take 
control and without looking to the right hand or the left will 
instinctively pick its way without doubt or hesitation through 
perils and obstacles which have reduced the intellect to the 
quiescence of despair. 

Lastly, under this head, sudden moral conversions are often best 
explicable from the point of view of subconscious action. Some 
lofty ideal, some reminiscence of early teaching, some idea heard 
in conversation or lead in a book, may have been rejected and 
scorned by the active intellect wedded to evil — and yet has all 
this while been growing and germinating in the subsoil of the mind 
until at last it is strong enough to force its way to the surface and 
shatter all opposing powers. 

Also— and here at last we seem to get in sight of our subject — 
these momentous changes are not confined to the moral sphere. 
They take place also in the physical sphere. The body as well as 
the mind can be healed by the action of this residual subliminal 

I said just now that the subconscious activities can only do their 
work — in saving a man in perilous circumstances — if the rational 
intellect resigns its own work and leaves off its own efforts " lets 
go." At such times, when the intellect (the meddling intellect) is 
quiescent, and the central office is closed, man ceases for a time 
to be an argumentative, striving creature ; the placid, vegetative, 
ruminative life, the life of growth and instinct asserts itself, and 
submerged modes of consciousness begin to stir and act, hke fairies 
dancing when the sun has set. This is a very important point. 
It must be one thing or the other — either the active intellect or 
the subconscious mind. If the intellect has failed and the sub- 
consciousness is to have its chance, it must have a free hand, the 
intellect must not meddle with it. 

The man must allow himself to get into a passive, quiescent, 
receptive condition, which is the condition necessary for the success- 
ful working of the subconsciousness ; and as sleep is the typically 


quiescent state, it will be particularly in sleep, natural or induced, 
that these lower modes of consciousness will exhibit their activity. 

And another point follows : if the patient's condition is one of 
passive receptivity then certain instructions, a definite cue, must 
be given to him if any subconscious activity is to follow. The 
subconscious mind cannot originate, but it can carry out instruc- 
tions. And where the subconsciousness does seem to act spon- 
taneously, as in dreams or in lunacy, its productions are still a 
parody or caricature of intelligent conduct. 

It cannot originate because of its position of vassalage and 
tutelage to the dominant reason. Even when it rebels successfully 
against its master, as in cases of alternate personality, it only 
exchanges one master for another ; the new personality is a rational 
one like the old one, only on different lines — when its mysterious 
power transformed a dissenting minister into an Italian warehouse- 
man who had no memor}^ of his ecclesiastical past, one rational 
personality is succeeded by another. 

The subconscious mind being the vassal of reason cannot itself 
originate. Facts or commands must be put before it. This was 
so in those instances I mentioned of its wonderful powers. When 
it solves a problem in sleep, the elements of the problem are first 
given to it by the reason ; where it constitutes a story the idea 
(as in Stevenson's case) was first impressed on it, and it was then 
able to work it out. When a moral convulsion takes place the 
moral idea must have been sown in that fruitful seed plot ; and 
it will be the same in mental healing. 

There must be a state of passive quiescence on the part of the 
patient ; and when he is in that state a powerful cue or suggestion 
must be conveyed to his subconscious self in order that it may 
■exert its beneficial activity. And so we find that when a man is 
put into that artificial form of sleep, which is called the hypnotic 
state, all kinds of suggestions will be obediently followed. He 
will no longer feel the pain of his toothache if he is told that the 
ache does not exist ; he will feel excruciating pain in his arm if 
he is told that he has broken it, and a similar command will produce 
a condition of profound unconsciousness in which a surgical 
operation can be performed without his feeling the smallest dis- 
comfort. These facts are quite familiar, and the principle involved 
is not confined to temporary relief in the hypnotic state ; it is only 
a further extension of the same principle when — outside of the 
hypnotic state — a strong suggestion made either by the patient 
himself or an outsider affects a permanent cure of some obstinate 

How exactl}' this subliminal mind, which is co-extensive with 
life, and is diffused throughout this body, exerts this action on the 
diseased tissue is a great problem lying before psychology and 
physiolog3^ to solve between them. We must be content with an 
obvious analogy. Just as the reason can set the body in motion 
and initiate action and change in it by an impulse issued through 
the brain and travelling down the motor nerves, so the diffused 
departmental consciousness can initiate various changes and dis- 
turbances in the various nerve centres with which it is associated. 


Real permanent cures seem to be actually effected by the sub- 
conscious mind acting on the diseased tissues in obedience to some 
jiowerful suggestion made either by a healer or by the patient 
Tiimself in what is called auto-suggestion — and the main condition 
of su'tcess is that the patient shall be in a state of passive receptivity ; 
he need not have actual faith in the treatment but he must not 
oppose it ; he must be in such a quiescent condition that the force 
of the suggestion ma}' have fair play and not be thwarted by his 
meddling intellect. His mind being thus quiescent and receptive, 
w"ill be able to concentrate itself on obedience to the pa ticular 
suggestion given to it : and as this departmental consciousness is 
co-extensive with bodily life, the action of this consciousness will 
manifest itself in the tissues of the body ; and its operation in 
obedience to a healing suggestion will he itself a healing operation. 

Ultimately, perhaps, we cannot get much bej^ond what Plato 
says in the Ph^edrus, that the soul is self moving and, therefore, the 
cause of all motion or change in anything else, and that soul takes 
-care of that which is devoid of soul {■Ktirru 4"''X'/ fTn^/fXff-at tthitoq -ao 

And now a word as to Christian Science. In dealing with it, 
we must distinguish and discriminate, neither swallowing it whole, 
nor rejecting it as pure imposture. There has been too often 
an absence of this discrimination. People have apparently 
thought that if they accept its alleged cures, they must also accept 
the remarkable philosophy of the universe which Mrs. Eddy has 
produced, and on the other hand, that if they reject that philosophy 
they are committed to a rejection of the cures themselves. But 
this is not the least necessary. We can accept the cures as an 
•example of the working of that subconscious mentality of which 
I have been speaking, while we reject the philosophy as an equally 
\mintelligible and unnecessary theory for accounting for them. 

There is no necessary connection whatever between the facts 
and the theory. Mrs. Eddy's powerful personality and the moral 
})latitudes in which her book abounds are just the sort of forces 
W'hich would naturally impress a rather unintelligent section of 
the public, and give the necessary cue to the subconscious mind, 
and so initiate the healing effect. This is abundantly evident 
from the testimonials given at great length at the end of Science 
•and Health. 

What we have to remember is that a strong and clear suggestion 
is to be given to the subconscious mind if it is to be stimulated 
to its work — but it does not in the least matter whether that sug- 
gestion is folmded on truth or not. 

The hypnotised man has not broken his arm. but is made to feel 
that he has. It is the quantity of strength of the suggestion, not 
its quality, that matters. 

Mr. Stevenson says : — 

" I do most of the morality, my Brownies have not a rudiment of what 
•we call a conscience," 

and Mr. Hudson expresses the same fact more prosaically b\' 
saying that this subjective or subconscious mind is essentialh' 
deductive — i.e., it draws conclusions from premises supplied to it 
whatever these premises may be. 


So when a Christian Scientist assures his patient that as he has^ 
no body he cannot possibly have any pain in it, this is just the 
sort of clear and vigorous suggestion which appeals to and stimulates 
the subconscious mind. 

The statements of Christian Science may be and are philosophi- 
cally and scientifically ridiculous— but this does not in the least 
prevent their being admirably adapted for their purpose. 

ERYTHRINA ZEYHERI. — Mr. E. M. Holmes, F.L.S., 
Curator of the Pharmaceutical Society's Museum, contributes tO' 
the Pharmaceutical Journal a short account of a chemical examina- 
tion of Erythrina Zeyheri, Harv., by Mr. E. Langham, of Vrede, 
O.R.C. The seeds of this plant, which have a scarlet testa, but do 
not give up their colour to chloroform, are used by Kaffirs for 
necklaces. The average weight of a seed is 20 grains. The seeds 
yield 28 per cent, of a bland nutty flavoured fixed oil, and 4 per 
cent, of a volatile oil (erythrol) which has a pungent odour recalling 
that of horse-radish. This volatile oil is a powerful irritant ; it 
is soluble in alcohol and ether, and distils at 60° C. It volatilises 
freely at 18° C, and belongs apparently to the butyl series of 
alcohols. Extraction of the seeds by alcohol yields an alkaloid 
insoluble in ether or benzol, and giving a purple precipitate with 
Auric chloride. A solution of the alkaloid boiled with ammonia 
or with caustic potash and Cupric sulphate gives a precipitate 
of Cupric hydrate only. With nitric acid it gives a bright orange 
colour changing to red ; with sulphuric acid it gives a dull red, 
darkening in tint. For this alkaloid Mr. Langham suggests the 
name Erythrine, but as a neutral substance. Erythrin, is obtained 
from the lichen Roccella fuciformis, Mr. Holmes proposes Zeyherine 
as more distinctive. When a solution of the alkaloid is boiled with 
dilute sulphuric acid for some time, and the resulting solution 
rendered strongly alkaline with caustic potash, cupric sulphate 
being afterwards added and the solution warmed, a crimson scarlet 
precipitate is thrown down. As regards the therapeutical proper- 
ties of the characteristic constituents of this plant, it is said that 
the fixed oil is aperient, if freed from the volatile oil : the latter 
is irritant and useful in liniments. The alkaloid appears to be of 
service in the treatment of scrofula. The fluid extract of the leaf 
has been used as a blood-purifier. The small Kaffir tree, Erythrinu 
Himiei, E. Mey., or um-Sintsana, is also used extensively by the 
Kaffirs for scrofula (see Andrevv^ Smith's "South African Materia 
Medica," 3rd ed., p. 90). 

DR. W. A. CALDECOTT. — On the 19th February the degree 
of Doctor of Science of the University of the Cape of Good Hope 
was formally conferred upon Mr. W. A. Caldecott, B.A., F.C.S.. 
M.LM.M., Consulting Metallurgist, of the Consolidated Gold Fields 
of South Africa, Johannesburg, for his thesis on " The Chemistry 
of Rand Banket ore treatment." Dr. Caldecott is one of the fore- 
most authorities on the metallurgy of gold as practised on the 
Rand, and his own researches, recorded in numerous published 
scientific papers, have been largely instrumental in advancing the 
theory of the subject, more particularly with respect to the Cyanide 
process, the basis of the present position of the Rand gold industry. 


By Rev. Father Norton, S.S.M. 

This question falls into two divisions — rites of boys and girls. 
Of the latter I know very little. The operation is said to be slight, 
but opinions differ about its value. Dr. Hewat in his book on native 
surgery considers that it merely ministers to lust, though he strongly 
approves of the circumcision of boys. Father Deacon, a missionary 
friend of mine, on the other hand, who has had much medical prac- 
tice among natives, considers that it is useful and would benefit 
even Europeans. The girls' rites begin about November and 
continue for four or five months. There is no lodge ; they stop at 
home and spend the days about the country with masks made of 
vertical straws, and necks and shoulders smeared with white clay 
as a sign of uncleanness or dedication, like Zulu girls at their 
puberty dances. They carry staves to drive away the uninitiated, 
and formerly would set upon men and even kill them. The 
operation is said to take place at deep pools, probably originally 
because of ablutions. 

Boys' circumcision takes place about the age of seventeen or 
eighteen ; girls' some two years earlier. It thus forms an intro- 
duction to adult life rather than marks the first beginnings of 
puberty. The Zulus have rites to mark this latter (ukutomba^ 
menstrua prima ; cf. umtomba, fons ; intombi, virgo) and appar- 
ently a similar rite for boys. The rite involves tabu of curds, at 
least in the case of girls, as also after childbirth). Zulu boys also 
sometimes have the string cut about ten years old, but regard 
actual circumcision with scorn. They suffer somewhat, but under- 
stand cleanliness, I am told. Circumcision of males seems to be 
general among the Bantu, as among Mohammedans (much earlier) 
and Jews (in infancy). I think I have heard that some Central 
African tribes circumcise in infancy, but have also puberty rites. 
The Zulus are said to have dropped it before Tshaka's birth about 
the end of the century before last, to prevent the newly organised 
warriors getting married (to which of course circumcision was 
preliminary) before they had fleshed their spears. The Zulus in 
Basutoland follow the Suto custom, partly in view of intermarriage 

It has been thought that circumcision was derived from the 
Arabs, but Suto tradition derives it from the Bushmen, and if a 
Bushman were in the lodge, he took precedence. The operation 
is still performed in the old way, namely, with a blunt assegai 
point, and not with a sharp instrument. This is said to be a further 
test of endurance. On the other hand, I have heard of a doctor 
saying that the operation was performed with great surgical skill. 
During the operation the boy is gagged, and held by two men in 
a sitting posture. The old method, said to have been derived from 
the Bushmen, was to slit the foreskin some distance on the upper 
side, and then cut the side pieces away ; to-day the ordinary 
method (the same as the Jewish) is used, or else merely the string 
cut as above among the Zulus. 

The boys enter the lodge (mophato) early in March, having 
partaken of the inaugural feast (but of no beer thereat). This is 


served after the niasasa or poles of the lodge have been hastily 

carried in procession to where the feast is to be held. In this 

procession horsemen in gay attire surround the bashemane or 

-neophytes, clad in black ox skins, which are burnt on leaving the 

lodge finally, being worn in the lodge only (drawers of ox-hide 

are worn for a week or two after they come out, during which time 

they continue to wear the red ochre). The procession is headed 

"by a warrior in war array. His horse and those of his companions 

•are, of course, a modern addition, due probably to the importance 

'of haste (suggesting eagerness) in bringing up the neophytes. 

'They have to go at double pace all the time. Part of the ceremony 

of the feast which follows is the twirling over his shoulder by the 

'warrior just mentioned of some of the meat of a bull, which he 

'has torn out by means of the barbed spear on which he holds it. 

■'Barbed spears are novv^ used only in this ceremony by the Basuto, 

"and not in war as among the Mashona ; but this religious use of 

"the weapon is doubtless significant. , The Bamangwato also have 

'barbed arrows according to Stow. While the warrior twirls the 

strip of flesh each neophyte kneels with hands behind him and is 

beaten till he succeeds in tearing off some of the meat with his 

•teeth. That night they steal away in the midst of the feast as 

though to gather firewood. It must not be known where they go. 

They are taken off to the site of the lodge, which they must build 

-by' sunrise ; they must also collect firewood to last them till they 

are healed and can move freely again, for the night following they 

'will be circumcised. It is said that human flesh is mingled with 

' 'their pap, called sehoere, which I am told is also the name by which 

they address one another at the lodge. It seems to be related to 

'■bohoera, the name of the whole company of neophytes, and if so, 

• according to Prof. Meinhof, to lira, which means a war host, and 

-also enemies, a hostile host, where the English and Latin word has 

exactly the same ambiguity. It is evident from this that the 

■'puberty rites were regarded as the enlistment in the army, cf. the 

' warrior riding before their procession, where anciently perhaps 

■■the whole m.anhood of the tribe went out to bring up the neophytes, 

•■as, I think, is still the case among the Becoana (see Mr. Willoughby's 

admirable paper on their rites). It is well known that all those 

'circumcised with a young chief are his special bodyguard till death, 

so 'that the successive bohoeras form the regiments of various ages 

"and experience attached to various members of the chiefs famihes. 

•■- 'The lodge is usually one among the Basuto now, but if the num- 

'feer of neophytes is great there may be more. The big towns of the 

Barolong, according to Mr. Willoughby, have several lodges, 

corresponding to various clans. If there are two brothers they 

'must be in different lodges among the Barolong. Among the 

Basuto it suffices that there be two doors* to the lodge, the elder 

* I passed close to a lodge the other day in the Leribe district of Basuto- 
'land. and noted that it consisted of two beehive huts (lying north and south — 
the roofs smeared with mud) connected by a passage, on the eastern side of 
which was the one door, divided into two by a pole down the middle, as Mr. 
Willoughby describes the Bechuana lodge. Masses of brushwood for fuel 
(not mest. as usual) w^ere piled a few feet to the east of each hut, forming a 
screen and court. 


using the Eastern, the younger the Western, according to one 
informant. The training takes the form of frequent beatings, 
which any circumcised man may administer at will, and which 
must be endured in silence. They are taught special secret songs 
and warlike poems, with the help of the rod, which is made from 
the moflfi bush, an evergreen. The singing takes place at night, 
and is taught by those already circumcised. During the day they 
get sleep. They must keep from the sight of women, and of the 
uninitiated. They converse in whispers, their trainer, the mosuoe, 
must not hear. While the wound is still sore they carefully bathe 
every morning. 

Another big feast takes place on their coming out of the lodge 
three months later. They are anointed Vv'ith red ochre when they 
corrie out, and bring home bundles of tinderweed to make fires. 
They are met by the girls with presents of necklaces, etc. I am 
told that the girls also try to kiss them, but that they ungallantly 
avoid. They may not go home to sleep for a fortnight. The 
second night of their arrival home there is a feast, when the girls 
serenade them with songs, after they have been herding the cattle 
during the day. For a fortnight they remain makholoane and 
wear red ochre and continue to sing their lithoko or praises. At 
daylight they are up to make their own fire, and off with the cattle. 
There are certain tabus which continue for a year. One is said to 
be against women, continuing for four years, vv'hen more are cir- 
cumcised, but it does not seem to be always kept now. 

I should mention that there are not only secret songs, but a 
secret language of the mophato. Each animal, tor example, is called 
by a different name from the ordinary, and these cryptic names are 
handed on from generation to generation among the men. 

I have to acknowledge much help from Mr. G. H. MacGaskill, of 


— From an announcement made at a recent meeting of the Royal 
Astronomical Society it appears that the earliest recorded observa- 
tion of Halley's comet during its present apparition was made at 
Hehyan, Upper Egypt, by Messrs. Keeling and Knox-Shaw, on the 
24th August last. A plate having been exposed in the 30-inch 
Reynolds reflector, on development what was supposed to be the 
comet was seen near the position computed for it : the negative 
was sent to Greenwich for confirmation, where it was concluded 
that the marking on the plate had been actually produced by the 

In No. 4,381 of the Astronomische Nachrichten it is stated that, 
by means of the prismatic camera, Messrs. Frost and Parkhurst 
have ascertained that the light of the comet is now largely due to 
the third cyanogen band. 

It is estimated that, to admit of the earth passing through the 
comet's tail, the length of the latter should be at least 13,800,000 
miles. A star chart, showing the comet's path during the next 
three months, is printed on page 202. 




Considered more especially in Comparison with that of 

South Africa. 

By J. Hewitt, B.A. 

The main object of this paper is to record what have seemed 
to me to be some of the more interesting facts concerning the 
fauna and flora of Sarawak ; and I have dealt with it in a com- 
parative manner in relation to that of South Africa in order to 
emphasise some of the more striking characteristics of both. 

As such the paper lays no claim to completeness in any respect ; 
and, indeed, I do not think that an exhaustive comparison between 
the faunas of limited areas belonging to different zoological regions 
would serve any useful purpose. 

For convenience sake I have referred to the respective faunas 
as if each were a homogeneous whole : in reality this is very far 
from the case, especially in South Africa, which has several fairly 
easily defined zoological areas. 

In Sarawak the whole land area from the sea shore fringed with 
the picturesque Casuarina trees and from the banks of the rivers 
right up to the very summits of the mountains is one exceedingly 
dense forest with no treeless areas whatever. Rains are frequent 
throughout the year, the air is nearly always saturated with 
moisture, and the temperature is comparatively but not exces- 
sively high, a shade temperature of 96 degrees F. being the maxi- 
mum, whilst in the lowlands the temperature rarely goes below 
68 degrees F. : such conditions are eminently suitable for the 
development of a luxurious vegetation, and we actually find in 
these tropical forests an inconceivable maze of innumerable forms 
crowded together in the minimum of space. Every tree supports 
some epiphytic growth, ferns, orchids, lichens, Pandani or mosses, 
and frequently the tree is so literally covered with epiphytes that 
it is quite impossible to see the bark of the tree itself ; this is 
especially the case in the lowland swamps and high up on the 
mountains which are so often bathed in clouds. 

In the competition for light the trees become very tall, their 
straight trunks rising in the air to the height of several hundred 
feet before producing their crown of branches : this feature is 
found in trees belonging to many different orders, and in some 
cases — the Dipterocarps, for instance — this applies to the whole 
group. Again, as it is important for a young tree to reach the open 
sunlight as quickly as possible the trunk is frequently fast-growing 
and the wood thereof soft ; and as the soft trunk wood is not 
strong enough to support unaided the large crown and the great 
length of trunk above, these trees have developed huge basal 
flanges which, arising crosswise from the bottom of the trunk, 
stretch out for a distance of 4 or 5 yards or more. The wood 
of the flange, being composed of fibres which cross in all directions, 
is very tough and dense ; such a flange when carefully prepared 
can be converted into an excellent single-piece dining table of full 


size. These flange-bearing trees belong to various natural orders : 
perhaps the best known are the " Tapang " {Abauria excelsa) and 
various species of Koompassia. 

Climbing plants and Lianas such as Gnetums, Hoy as. ]'itis, 
Tylophora and scarlet-flowered Baiihinias are very abundantly 
represented in the Sarawakjungle, and the thorny rattans — which 
are nothing but climbing palms — trail out their scrambling stems 
for distances of many yards. 

On the ground below are to be found ferns, a fev/ ground orchids, 
some Aroids, a number of Zingiberace^e {Alpinia and Hornstedtia) 
and some sedges. Grasses are never found in the virgin jungle 
with but one exception, Leptaspis iirceolata, which appears to be 
the only truly indigenous grass in Borneo. Occasionally one may 
meet Vv^ith that gigantic Arum, the Aniorphothallus, or with the 
most degraded of Phanerogam parasites, a Rafflesia, with its 
enormous and ill-smelling flowers : of this latter, several species are 
known, and it is worthy of note that the host of this genus is 
invariably a species of Cissiis. 

A remarkable association of animal and plant life for the mutual 
benefit of both is exemplified by the ant-frequented " hospitating " 
plants, a heterogeneous assembly belonging to various orders. In 
these plants, which comprise ferns {Lecanopteris spp. and Pol\- 
podimn sinuostim), Rubiaceae [Mymecodia and Hydnophytiim) and 
several Macarangas, the stems are hollowed out and the cavities 
are appropriated by ants as a permanent home. In Mymecodia, 
which is an epiphyte, the stem is widely swollen and tuberous : 
in section this is seen to be honeycombed with numerous cells 
and galleries, the dwelling place of myriads of ants. In the very 
young Myrmecodia, long before it is approached by ants, the stem 
is tuberous and hollow. Such hospitating plants are met with 
very frequently in the Sarawak jungle. 

Succulent plants, xerophytic leaves and strongly spinous leaves, 
such as are so abundant in South Africa, are exceedingly rare in 
Sarawak : nevertheless certain natural orders {e.g., Euphorbiacese), 
which are typically xerophytic in South Africa, are very strongly 
developed in Borneo. The only xerophytic habitats in Sarawak 
are on the summits of the mountains, where the trees are very 
stunted and the leaves thick and leathery, and by the sea shore : 
perhaps also that impenetrable maze, the mangrove swamp, must 
be included here, as leathery leaves are the rule in the Rhizophoreae, 
the Sonneratia and other mangrove trees. 

The climate of Sarawak has no well-marked seasons, and the 
vegetable life knows no such seasonal contrasts as obtains in South 
Africa, the trees being ever green. Nevertheless most of the rain 
appears in the months between October and March, whilst June, 
July and August are comparatively dry months. In correspond- 
ence with this there is a fairly definite flowering and fruiting season. 
All the common fruits, the Durian [Durio zibcthinits), the Mango- 
steen {Garcinia mangostana) and the Rhambutan {Nepheliwn 
lappaceum) appear in January or February, the flowering season 
being about September or October. Some of the jungle trees seem 
to flower and fruit, at about the same times of the year : the fruit 


of the Dipterocarp, Shorea ghyshertiana, which is exported to 
England for the benefit of the soapmakers, always appears on the 
market in the early months of the year. 

A phenomenon familiar to all who have lived in the Malayan 
region is the curious periodicity of flowering of certain orchids. 
The best known example is that of the pigeon orchid Dendrohwm 
crumenatum, an epiphyte growing abundantly in Sarawak. On a 
certain day all the pigeon orchids of the town come into flower : 
the next day the flowers are closed. About fifty days after they 
all flower again, and in another period of perhaps thirty or forty 
or more days another general flowering occurs ; the remarkable 
fact is a simultaneous flowering of all the pigeon orchids in the 
town on certain days, the intervening periods of rest being very 
variable. In this species of orchid I found that fertilisation always 
took place by means of bees {Apis dorsata), which visit the in- 
florescences in swarms at about 7 a.m. I have paid much attention 
to the practical study of the fertilisation of orchids by means of 
insects, and have come to the conclusion that in Sarawak many 
orchids of fine and conspicuous flowers {e.g., the magnificent 
Phalcenopsis grandiflora) are rarely or never visited by insects 
and seed pods are not formed ; on the other hand, small-flowered 
orchids nearly always set many pods ; due, I believe, to the fact 
that they are visited by ants which are able to remove the tiny 
pollinia and to effect fertilisation. It appears that bees are par- 
ticularly fond of blue* flowers or scented flowers, and as orchids 
do not have blue flowers and are only rarely scented, the bees find 
no attraction in the flowers of orchids. I have often watched 
carpenter bees present in swarms on the blue flowers of a Vitex 
v/hilst close by was a huge clump of Aritndina speciosa with numer- 
ous, showy and beautiful flowers which were quite ignored by the 
bees. Large skipper butterflies {Erionota thrax) are responsible 
for the occasional fertilisation of Ariindina speciosa. 

In Java this species is self -fertilised and always produces a full 
complement of seed pods ; in Sarawak this is never the case with 
Arundina speciosa, but it does occur in several other orchids. 

The point I wish to emphasise is that whilst orchid flowers are 
so specially constructed in reference to cross fertilisation by means 
of insects, a majority of the larger flowered orchids are never 
visited by insects. 

A group of plants which attains to a specially rich development 
in Sarawak is the Ferns. Not only are they very numerous in 
species, but also the ferns of Sarawak are much bigger, speaking 
generally, than those of South Africa. The tree ferns {Alsophila 
spp.) often reach a height of over 30 feet, and even in the Hymeno- 
phyllacese, a family of ferns which are usually small or minute, 
Sarawak has a number of species which are comparatively large 
{Trichomanes maximum, rigidum and foeniculaceum). The total 
number of species known from Sarawak must be at least 400, f 

* Probably because of the nectar contained in such flowers and not on 
account of the colour itself, though this would act as a guide to the food 

t In T. R. Sim's Book the number of known ferns in South Africa is 
given as 157. * 


and doubtless more are to be found, as quite recently Mr. Brooks 
and myself brought to light thirty or forty new species, mostly 
collected within easy distance of the capital. The peculiar genus 
M-atonia, represented by two species only, both found in Sarawak, 
is interesting as being practically identical with a fossil genus, 
Laccopteris, which occurs in early Jurassic beds : another peculiar 
genus lately discovered— and only two individual plants are 
known — is the Megapteris, a very large Marrattiacea. 

The coriaceous type of fern, of which Pellcea Calomelanos (so 
common in the Transvaal) is an example, is rare in Borneo : it does 
occur, however, at high elevations. 

In the Monocotyledons, the orchids are very numerous in species ; 
there is a fairly good development of Zingiberaceae, of Aroids of 
Palmae (especially the rattans Dcemonorops and Calamus) and of 
Screw pines {Pandanus and Freycinetia), but of Amaryhidaceae, 
Liliace.'E and Iridaceae, which are abundant in South Africa, Sara- 
wak has only very few representatives. In the Dicotyledons 
indigenous compositae are few — one species, Vernonia arborea, is 
a tree ; on the other hand, this order is well represented in South 
Africa. The Asclepiads, which are abundant in South Africa, are 
represented in Sarawak only by climbers and epiphytes such as 
the Hoyas, Tylophoras and that remarkable genus the Dischidia 
whose leaves in certain species are modified into pitchers within 
which a root system is developed. The true pitcher plants. 
Nepenthes, are abundant throughout Borneo and the species are 
many ; in some of the mountain species the pitchers are very large 
and of brilliant colour. 

The trees are multitudinous in species and belong to many 
natural orders, of which the following are best represented : 
Dipterocarpeae, Sapotaceae, Leguminoseae, and Cupuliferae ; the 
smaller-sized trees belong to the Lauracese, Euphorbiaceae, Myris- 
ticaceae and Apocynaceae. 

The vegetable exports of Sarawak are the following : — 
Pepper, the product of Piper nigrum, which is not indigenous to 
Borneo though various species of climbing Piper and of the 
terrestrial Cuheha section are common in the jungle. Both 
the black and the white pepper of commerce come from 
one and the same plant, the black pepper being the whole 
berry and white pepper the same minus its skin. 
Rail' sago, obtained from the pith of the sago palm {Metroxylon 

Rattans, the stems of various species of Damonorops and 

Gutta-percha, obtained from various Sapotacea, more especially 

the Palaquiums. 
Rubber, from the climbing Willughbeia ; very soon, too, Sarawak 

will export large quantities of Para rubber. 
Gutta jeUitong. which is the sap of the Apocynaceous tree, Dyera 

costata mixed with plaster of Paris. 
Vegetable fat, in the form of the nuts of Shorea ghysbertiana. 
Garnbier, the dried extract from the leaves of the rubiaceous 
creeper, Uncaria gambir. 


Dragon's blood, the red resin found on the fruits of a Dannonorops 

Camphor, found in the cavities of the wood of a Dryobalanops (a 

Dammar, a resin from the Agathis and various other trees, prin- 
cipally Dipterocarps. 

Ironwood, exceedingly heavy and dense from the tree Eusider- 
oxylon zwageri (Laurineee). 

And formerly Cutch, an extract from mangrove bark {Briigitiera 
spp., etc.). 

Having thus briefly surveyed the general conditions of vegetable 
life in Sarawak, we may now undertake a comparison between the 
fauna of that country and of South Africa. It is familiar to all 
that the animal world is absolutely dependent directly or indirectly 
for its very ex-stence upon the plant life of the environment, and 
consequently the fauna and flora of a country are closely correlated 
together. Some of the most marked differences between the 
faunas of the two areas are to be explained simply as a result of 
the profound dissimilarity of floral conditions, but, as every student 
of geographical distribution of animals knows, such considerations 
will not explain all the curious facts of distribution. 

In Sarawak there is a very noticeable absence of the larger 
mammalia, particularly the Ungulata ; all that Borneo has to 
compare with the fleet herds of gazelles and buck and gnu, the 
zebras, the giraffes and the buffalo comprised in a list of no less 
than forty species of large game,* is the rusa deer {Cenms equimis), 
the Bos banteng, the small Cervulus muntjac and the tiny chevro- 
tains [Tragidus). And whereas South Africa can boast of the 
stately lion, the leopard and the cheetah, the Felidse of Borneo 
{Felts hengalensis, F. planiceps, F. nehidosus) are comparatively 
small and insignificant, as their prey is also small. And of Canidae 
(jackals and foxes) and Hyaenas, Sarawak has no examples ; on 
the other hand, bears, which are absent from South Africa, are 
represented in the Bornean jungles by the small honey bear, which, 
in its search for honey, climbs to the top of the giant jungle trees. 

But whilst there is a great scarcity of swift-footed terrestrial 
mammals, Sarawak has a rich fauna of arboreal forms : in this 
categorv are included the anthropoid apes {Simia satyrus and 
Hylobates), the various monkeys {Macacus and Semnopithecus) — 
Sarawak has no baboons — the Nycticebus, the Tarsius, the lemur- 
like GalcEopitheciis, the numerous bats, the squirrels, the Tiipaias, 
and the civet cats, one species even being provided with a prehensile 
tail [Arctidis binturong). And it is noteworthy that quite a 
number of these have developed expansions of the skin which 
enable them to fly, as, for example, the numerous bats — the com- 
mon flying fox (Pteropus edide) attains a very large size, having 
an expanse of 4 or 5 feet — the various species of flying squirrel and 
the Galccopithecus volans. 

As for the Rodents, an order represented in South Africa by 
numerous forms, most of them terrestrial, they are comparatively 
rare in Borneo, the squirrels excepted ; and of burrowing mam- 

* Borneo has probably less than 20 species of Ungulata all told. 


mals, represented in South Africa by the mole-Hke rodents 
(Georychiis) and by those pecuhar ' moles, the Chrysochlorida?. 
Sarawak has no representative. Of special interest on account 
of structural peculiarities are the following Sarawak mammals : 
Siniia satynis, the ourangutan ; Nasalis larvatus, the long-nosed 
monkey ; Ptilocercus lowi, the pentailed shrew ; the naked-tailed 
Gymnuriis raffJesii, and the prehensile-tailed Arctidis binturong. 

The Reptilia are particularly well developed both in South 
Africa and in ' Sarawak. Of lizards there are Seines, Agamids, 
Geckos and Monitors in both areas, but Borneo has only one 
Lacertid, and has no representative whatever of the Zonuridte 
or of the Chamgeleons so common in South Africa. Considering 
the Agamidae, whereas those of South Africa are in general* sand 
and rock-frequenting forms, depressed in shape and of a brown 
or earthy colour, the Agamids of Borneo {Calotes and Gonyo- 
cephalus) are purely arboreal forms, in shape laterally compressed 
and green in colour : and another genus of Agamidae, the Draco. 
of many species, has developed regular parachutes on the sides of 
its body and is known as the " flying lizard." A somewhat 
similar modification of the sides of the body into large membranous 
expansions has occurred in Ptychozoon homalocephalum. which 
belongs to an entirely different group of lizards, the Geckos. But 
whilst the lizards of Borneo are so specially adapted for arboreal 
life, those of South Africa are more specialised for life on the veld, 
and in certain groups they have become serpentiform in shape. 
The species of Zonurus are strong-limbed creatures of normal build, 
but in the closely-related genus Chamasaiira the bod}^ and tail 
are much elongated and the limbs are atrophied— in C. cenea both 
pairs of limbs are present and, though small, are perfect, in C. 
anguina the are both styliform, whilst in C. macrolepis the 
creature has dispensed with its fore limbs altogether. And this 
very same process has occurred also in other lizard families — for 
example, in the Gerrhosauridae and in the Scincids where, in the 
species of Scelotes, we have much elongated lizards with limbs in 
various degrees of degeneration, or absent altogether. This 
modification appears to be in adaptation to a life on sandy soil. 
My friend, Mr. F. Noome, tells me that small lizards of normal 
build, when travelling on sandy soil, make use of the tail very 
largely in progression, as the slender legs sink into the sand and are 
insufficient to carry them along. But the Chamcssai4ra has 
developed the tail to such an extent that the creature has no use 
for legs which, being a hindrance rather than a help in sandy 
localities, have aborted. It is a significant fact that the living 
ChamcBsaura cannot break off its tail at the base — though it occa- 
sionally does so near the apex of the tail — as ordinary lizards are 
apt to do in emergencies. 

In South Africa there are a number of burrowing lizards, mostly 
degenerate members of the Scincidae : such are the several species 
of Acontias, the Herpetosaura and the Typhlosaurus with its 
obsolete eyes. But Sarawak has nothing whatever of this kind. 

* Agama atyicollis of South Africa is arboreal in habit and of a brilliant 
blue green colour. 


The Snakes of Sarawak are numerous and mostly arboreal in 
habit : a green colouration is common in a number of distinct 
genera {e.g., the slender "whipsnake, Dryophis prasinus, the Coluber 
oxycephala, and even the viper, Lachesis wagleri). The same 
green colour occurs in the arboreal snakes of South Africa {CJdor- 
ophis and Dendraspis), but these are relatively few in number of 
species. Thoroughly aquatic snakes are represented in Sarawak 
by a number of species of the HomalopsincB ; these are not found 
in South Africa. It is a curious fact that those of Sarawak are 
appreciably bigger, on the whole, than those of South Africa. 
The large snake-eating hamadryad {Naia bungarus) of Sarawak 
attains a length of as much as 15 feet and must be considered 
the most poisonous snake in the world, whereas the largest cobra 
of South Africa {Naia nigricollis) does not reach more than half 
that length : the Sarawak Python (P. reticulatus) may grow to a 
length of 30 feet, but the Python sebce of South Africa does not, I 
believe, exceed 20 feet. Burrowing snakes, the various species of 
Typhlops and Glaucoma, are fairly common here : in Sarawak 
Glaucoma is absent and Typhlopid?e are rare, though the burrowing 
habit is found in two much larger snakes {Cylindrophis rufus and 
C. Uneatus) belonging to a different family, the Ilysiidae. It is 
recorded on good authority that one of the Bornean snakes (a 
Chrysopelea) has the flying habit, the ventral scutes of its body 
being modified accordingly. 

In the Batrachia also the arboreal habit has impressed itself, 
and Wallace long ago published an account of the flying frog of 
Borneo. These flying frogs (several species of Rhacophonis), 
which have a very widely extended web between the digits of 
the hand^ and feet, are in reality very closely allied to the common 
frogs of the genu> Rana, so abundant in South Africa. Some of 
the Sarawak frogs have rather peculiar breeding habits : there are 
two species {Calophrynus pleurostigma and Ixalus petersii) which 
habitually deposit their eggs within the pitcher of a Nepenthes, 
and in the pitcher fluid, where also the giant mosquitoes of the 
genus Toxorhynchites (near Megarhinus) and various other Diptera 
inva iably lay their eggs, the whole of the larval history of the 
irog is pas-.ed. We are quite prepared to find tha' some of the 
South African frogs have unusual breeding habits or abbreviated 
life histories, but very little appears to be known on this subject. 

In the groups of freshwater fishes the Sarawak and South African 
faunas have much in common, though Sarawak is very much richer 
in genera and in species. The special abundance of the Bornean 
fish fauna is not to be regarded simply as a consequence of the 
strong development of extensive water courses covering the whole 
area of that large island, for it should be noted that the adjacent 
islands of New Guinea and Celebes, which have also good river 
systems, have a scanty fish fauna. The Cyprinina and various 
group cf the Siluridae {Clariina, Silurina and Ariina) abound in 
the rivers of Borneo : whilst in South Africa the Cyprinid genera 
Barbus and Labeo and the Siluroid genus Clarias — which three 
genera all occur in Sarawak — include some of the commonest of 
freshwater fish. The Labyrinthici, a family whose members have 


the power of retaining life for a long time out of water, have several 
genera in Sarawak, of which probably the best known is he 
" climbing perch " {Anabas scandens) : in South Africa the same 
genus is also found. But the serpent heads {Ophiocephaliis). 
which h ve the same drought-resisting faculty, and are common 
in Sarawak, do not occur in South Africa. 

On the other hand, Borneo has no representatives of the Cichlid^e 
nor of the Characiinidse families which are found in nearly ev^ry 
part of Africa, Cape Colony excepted. The presence of the genus 
Osteoglossum in Sarawak has been regarded as an indication of 
the probable occurrence of a Dipnoan in that region, but as yet the 
expectation remains unconfirmed by discovery. 

Amongst the invertebrata the two faunas present profound 
differences in many groups. The large order of the Insecta* has 
a specially rich development in both areas. So far as the Butter- 
flies are concerned, however, those of Sarawak far exceed the 
South African forms in number, in size and in beauty. As examples 
of magnitude I will mention Thaumantis aliris, several species of 
Troidcs (Ornithoptera). and the common Hestia lynceus ; and of 
beauty the Troides hrookeanns, the Papilio arjuna carnatus (a 
member of the magnificent green coloured Paris group) and the 
Prothoe calydonia. 

Papilios and Danaids {Damns, Enplnuj, Hestia and Ideopis) are 
very common in Sarawak : in South Africa the species are few. 
Curiously enough Danais chrysippus so common in South Africa, 
and so widely distributed elsewhere, does not occur in Sarawak, 
whilst Hypolimnas misippus, whose female so closely " mimics " 
the Danais, does occur but is a rarity. Amongst the Lycaenidse 
of Sarawak, the genus Arkopala with many relatively large species 
of a deep rich l)lue or green colouration figures prominently ; in 
South Africa it does not occur at all. On the other hand, the 
Acra;idse, so common in South Africa, have no representative in 
Borneo, though a few occur on the other side of Wallace's line in 
New Guinea and Australia. 

In South Africa butterflies of many species exhibit the pheno- 
menon of seasonal dimorphism ; in Sarawak this is not the case 
though sometimes {e.g., Melanitis ismene and leda), two forms, 
which elsewhere would be referred to as wet and dry season forms 
of the same species, do occur but contemporaneously and irrespec- 
tive of the seasons. 

Amongst the Moths, the Saturnidae of South Africa include a 
number of large and handsome species, but, whilst Sarawak has 
only few species, the magnificent Attacus atlas is much superior in 
size, and I think also in beauty. The Cossidse of South Africa are 
probably of many species, but none of them are equal in size to 
the Diiomitus ceramicits of Sarawak : I believe, too, that the large 
Hepialid, fairly common in Sarawak, is larger than any of the 
South African species. A family very common in the Bornean 
jungle and apparently not represented here is that of the Chal- 

* I am indebted to Mr. C. J. Swierstra for my information on the subject 
of South African insects. 


cosiidae : these are brightly coloured moths diurnal in habit and 
usually of feeble flight, whilst the great majority of ^ them are 
" mimics." One very common species, Ponipilon subcyanea, has 
a deep blue colouration much like the Euplcea mulciber male but, 
it should be added, the flight is so different that we can hardly 
suppose that an observant bird would fail to distinguish between 
them ; other Chalcosiids resemble Danais, Ideopsis, various 
Pieridse, and also species belonging to other families of moths 
such as the Euschemidae. The phenomenon which is rightly or 
wrongly called mimicry is exhibited to a high degree both in South 
Africa and in Sarawak. 

As might be anticipated, the Lepidoptera, in both countries, 
are preyed upon by innumerable species of Ichneumon and Bracon 
flies. In Sarawak the genus Iphyaidax of the Braconidae is very 
rich in species, some of them being very large, and having ovi- 
positors stretching for a length of four inches or more (cp. /. insignis 
Sm.). Those minute hymenopterous parasites, the Chalcidae, 
are also exceedingly numerous : I have reared them from the 
cases of a wasp {Pison), from larvae of a phytophagous beetle 
{Lema), and even from the pupae of an ant. 

Amongst the Ants very characteristic of the Sarawak jungles 
are the numerous species of the genus Polyrachis. Certain species 
of these large spiny creatures make silken nests of a material much 
like spider's web : the silk comes from the body of the helpless 
pupa which, during spinning operations, is carried in the mouth 
of the worker ant who dots it about her and there wherever she 
considers it proper to attach a strand. This habit is found also in 
the QLcophylla smaragdina, whose nests are built of leaves firmly 
united together by bands of silk. In the genus Campanotus, found 
also in vSouth Africa, the Bornean C. gigas is considerably bigger 
than any pecies to be found here. Of Termites Sarawak has many 
species, and characteristic of that region are the arboreal nests of 
these insects : such nests, spheroidal or irregular in shape, and of 
about one or two feet in diameter, are commonly found built round 
the branches of a jungle tree. Apparently that type of nest is not 
known in South Africa, but Mr. Swierstra considers that they may 
occur in the eastern sub-tropical districts. 

Amongst the Coleoptera the Lucanidae of Borneo are numerous 
and large : here they are few and comparatively small.* On the 
other hand, the Scarabeidae, more particularly the true Scarabaeini, 
are mo:"e richly developed in South Africa. In the Cetoniid family 
Sarawak has numerous brilliant green forms of fairly large size, 
and this same colouration appears in the genus Anomala. The 
brilliant green colour of the Cetoniids is also parallelled in the 
Buprestids of Sarawak, whilst the South African repres ntatives 
of these families are not so characteristically green, and the differ- 
ence is very striking. In the Melolonthidae, whilst those of South 
Africa are probably at least as numerous as those of Sarawak, 

* I believe that the beetles which frequent the shrubs of the Transvaal 
veld during the summer months are more watchful and alert than those of 
the Sarawak jungle which being less apprehensi^'e of danger are more easily 


they are appreciably smaller; and amongst the Dynastidie, the 
magnificent Chalcosoma atlas has no rival in South Africa. 

The Carabidae of South Africa are very numerous and, on the 
whole, are very much bigger than tho^e of Sarawak ; but that largest 
of Carabids, the extraordinary Mormolyce, has its home in the 
Sarawak jungles. 

The Cicindelidae are well represented in South Africa, but no 
members of the characteristic Eastern genera Collyris and the 
ant-like Tricondyla are to be found here. In the Phytophaga the 
genus Sagra is represented by several species in both areas, but 
those of South Africa are not so large nor so brilliant as those of 
Sarawak. On the other hand, the genus Psammodus (Tene- 
brionid?e), rich in species of large size, so characteristic of the dry 
plains of South Africa, is not found at all in Sarawak ; and the 
same applies to the Brachycerus group of the Curculionid^e. 
Coccinellid£e are found in both areas, and it is noteworthy that in 
each case the coccinellid type of colouration is also to be found in 
other groups of beetles {Phytophaga. Hcteromera) and even in 
pentatomid bugs. 

The orthoptera of Sarawak, like those of South Africa, are richly 
developed. Winged Phasmids (x\ruanoidea) of large size and bright 
colours are common in the jungle : and no less common are the 
wingless forms of sombre hue, some of which also attain great 
dimensions {e.g., Heteropteryx). That remarkable insect, the 
Phyllium, its body flattened into 'eaf-iike shape and of leaf-green 
colour is found, though not very commonly, in Sarawak ; and 
another creature worthy of remark is the large mantis Hymenopus 
bicornis, which is of a beautiful pink and white colour with a trans- 
lucency reminding one of the petals of a flower. 

Locus L swarms are unknown in Borneo. 

As regards the Arachnida they seem to be more richly developed 
in South Africa. The So'pugidae, which are so common here, have 
no representative in Sarawak ; and of scorpions and four-lunged 
spiders South x\frica has by far the greater number of species. 
Social spiders, whose characteristic nests are so well known here, 
are not represented in the jungles of Sarawak. 

In the Mollusca also South Africa has probably far more forms, 
a': any rate of land-shells. But whilst the Bornean land-shells 
are comparatively few in species, some of them reach a large size, 
Helix brookeana, for instance, being of specially large dimensions ; 
but it; should be mentioned that the South African species of 
Achatina are also very large. 

Land crabs are common to both countries, and those formidable 
jungle pests, the land leeches, occur in Sarawak, but are not to be 
found in South Africa. Earth-worms are more abundant in 
Sarawak, but none of the Bornean species can compare with the 
giant forms of Cape Colony. As Mr. Swierstra points out, that 
important function which belongs to the earthworm of Europe 
in lifting and renewing the soil is here fulfilled to some extent 
by the Termites. In the mangrove swamps of Sarawak a some- 
what similar function i-, served by a large crab, the Thalassina 
anornala, which brings up thick mud from the wet ^substrata, 


piling it up into mounds three or four feet high, which dry in the 
sun. I have very httle doubt but that this crab has b;en largely 
responsible for the formation of dry land from mangrove swamp. 

Briefly summarising the more important faunistic features 
illustrated by the above somewhat scattered facts : in the damp 
and hot forests of Sarawak the mammals are mostly arboreal, some 
Tiave developed flying organs, a few are semiaquatic, none are 
burrowing ; the lizards are mostly arboreal and green in colour, 
some are flying and none are burrowing ; the snakes are large and 
mostly arboreal, one is stated to be flying, a fair number are 
aquatic, several are burrowing ; of the frogs, several are flying ; 
the insects are numerous and very varied, of large size and brilliant 
colours, a rich green preponderating in several groups of beetles 
and butterflies. In South Africa large mammals are far more abun- 
'dant and, as terrestrial forms, they are fleet of foot, whilst others of 
-smaller size are burrowing ; many of the lizards are terrestrial and of 
•sombre hue, whilst in several groups they have become serpentiform 
and a number are burrowing ; snakes are abundant but not very large 
and are mostly terrestrial in habit though quite a number are 
burrowing, some are arboreal and a few are aquatic ; insects are 
very numerous and varied, but on the whole they are not so large 
"nor so brilliant as those of the tropical forests of Borneo. 

In conclusion, there can be very little doubt but that all these 
.general differences are explicable simply as a consequence of the 
widely different environmental conditions. As we have seen, 
rlosely-related species in the two areas have specialised in certain 
directions so as to appear very distinct : if the environment in 
these two countries were identical we should not expect to find the 
same species of animals, but we should expect to see in the two 
■areas a strong general likeness in form, colouration and habits of 
the animals belonging to the many orders of the animal kingdom. 


International Congress of Mining, Metallurgy, Applied Mechanics, 
and Practical Geology is appointed to take place at Diisseldorf 
during the last week in June. There will be four sections : one 
for Mining, one for Metallurgy, one for Applied Mechanics, and 
one for Practical Geology. The address of the Committee of 
organisation is Jacobistrasse, 3 5, Diisseldorf, Germany. 


Chemical, Metallurgical, and Mining Society of South Africa. — 
Saturday, December 20th : Dr. J. Moir, M.A., F.C.S., Vice-President, in 
the chair. — " Endless rope haulage " : "H. G. Kay. A description of the 
hauling system practised on diamond mining properties, where large quan- 
tities of ground are handled in open workings. — " A Rotary Extrac'or for 
precious metals from solutions " : W. Lloyd and E. T. Rand. Detailed 
description of a machine evolved by the authors, wherein zinc shavings and 
clippings constitute the precipitating agent, and ready access to the gold 
slimes without stoppage of precipitation allows of a daily clean-up, the valves 
being locked against unauthorised entry. The advantage of saving in zinc 
and acid is likewise claimed. 


Saturday, January 15th: Mr. C. B. Saner, M.I.M.M., A.I.M.E., Vice- 
President, in the chair. — " Notes on the precipitating effects of substances 
containing various forms of Carbon and Cellulose on cyanide solutions con- 
taining gold and silver " : A. J. ClarK and W. J. Shar'wood. The 
results of a series of experiments and observations made by the authors at 
the Homestake Mine, South Dakota, U.S.A., together with other information 
on the subject gathered from various sources, and a summary of the literature 
bearing on charcoal precipitation, as well as a list of patents granted to date 
protecting the various uses of charcoal as a precipitant. 


Report of a Magnetic Survey of South Africa. Prof. J. C. Beattie, 
pp. X. -I- 235. Cambridge: University Press. 1909. Price, 21s. An 
account, published for the Royal Society, of the magnetic survey carried 
out by the author, aided by grants from the Royal Society, the British 
Association for the Advancement of Science, and Governments of South 
African Colonies. The observations embrace a period of some eight 
years, and were made at about 400 stations. The area covered includes 
ou hly British South Africa from the Ngami region southwards. The 
appendices, containing, inter alia, the detailed station observations, 
occupy the larger portion of the book, and the entire work is the record 
of a particularly arduous investigation. 

List of Official Chemical Appointments. R. B. Pilcher. 3rd ed. revised 
and enlarged, pp. 234. London : Institute of Chemistry of Great Britain 
and Ireland, 19 10. Price 2s. 3d. post free. This consists of three main 
divisions, viz.: — (i) Appointments in Great Britain and Ireland under 
various State Departments, County and Borough Councils and other 
authorities, and the professorial and teaching appointments in Univer- 
sities, Colleges, Technological Institutions, Medical, Agricultural and 
Veterinary Colleges, and in Public and Secondary Schools ; (2) pro- 
fessional and teaching appointments in Government Departments 
Colleges and Schools in various British Colonies and Protectorates 
including the Cape Colony, Transvaal, Orange River Colony, Natal, and 
Rhodesia; (3) concise information regarding - British Societies and 
Institutions for the Advancement of Chemical Science, and of profes- 
sional chemical interests. In addition to strictly chemical appointments, 
those in connection with Agriculture, Metallurgy, Assaying, Mineralogy 
and Geology and other branches of work wherein chemical knowledge 
is useful, have been included so as to render the information as compre' 
hensive as 'possible. 


The Assistant General Secretary (P.O. Box 1497, Cape Town) would be 
glad to receive the correct addresses of the following members, whose last 
known addresses are given below : — 

Boulton, H. C, c/o Messrs. Pauling & Co., Ltd., Broken Hill, Rhodesia. 

Brooks, Edwin James Dewdney, C.E., Public Works Department, Umtata. 

Brown, Walter Bruce, District Engineer, Cape Government Railways, 
Cradock, C.C. 

Campbell, Allan McDowell McLeod, C.E., B.A., F.I.Inst., Cape Govern- 
ment Railwaj's, Aliwal North, C.C. 

Champion, Ivor Edward, P.O. Roberts Heights, Pretoria. 

Dickie, A., 475, Currie Road, Durban Natal. 

Gillispie, John, Railway Survey Camp, George, C.C. 

Hutt, Ernest W.. P.O. Box 2862, Johannesburg. 

Nichol, William, Superintendent of Mines, De Beers Consd. Mines, Ltd., 
Kimberley, C.C. 

Phillips. Geoffrey John, .Vcting District Engineer, De Aar, C.C. 

Skeels, Brebner School, Bloemfontein, O.R.C. 

Turner, George Albert, M.B., Ch.B., D.P.H., Parktown West, Johannesburg. 

Wilson, Allen, ^y and 38, Steytler's Buildings, Johannesburg. 




By G. W. Cook, B.Sc. >. — i i-^ 

The Salt Pan is situated about thirty miles from Bloemfon- 
tein, in a direction north-west by north, and is about four miles 
to the north-west of Lombaard's Drift, over the Modder River. 
It forms a portion of several farms, among which are Haagen- 
stad on the east, Rietfontein and Vaalbank on the south, 
Poortje on the west and Yeelgeluk and Rondefontein on the 

The pan itself is heart-shaped and forms a depression sur- 
rounded on all sides excepting the south by rising ground, 
composed of shales, sandstones and intrusive dolerites. 

The beds of the entire district consist of sandstones and 
shales, which exhibit the lithological characters of the lower 
Karroo or Ecca series. 

Fossils appear to be rare, the only one I have found appear- 
ing to be a poorly-preserved specimen of Glossopteris. 

The sandstones abound with spherical formations, which at 
first sight appear to be ordinary concretionary nodules. These 
are found in all horizons in the Ecca series. I have found 
them on Naval Hill, whose beds are above those at the Salt 
Pan, and in still more marked quantities in the higher strata 
near Senekal. The unweathered spheres contain a hard, 
closely-grained, dark limestone. 

I have not been able to collect sufficient data upon which to 
urge a hypothesis as io their formation, but I may be per- 
mitted to throw out the suggestion for what it is worth, that 
they are old pot-holes in which calcium carbonate has been 
deposited from solution. 

The dip of the beds, except where disturbed by intrusions, 
is uniformly to the south-east. 

The pan then lies on the north-western edge of a synclinal 
fold, whose axis runs north-east to south-west, and wdiose 
south-eastern edge outcrops in Natal and the north of the 
Cape Colony. 

The beds underlying the pan consist of dark grey shales, 
wdiich dip uniformly to the south-east. On the higher parts 
round the pan these beds are over-laid by grey sandstones, 
which are well exposed on the farm, which derives from them 
its name — Vaalbank. This sandstone is occasionally ripple- 

The shale is very compact, almost impervious, and is cut bv 
two main cleavages almost at right angles to each other and 
to the plane of bedding. It often weathers in conchoidal 
fashion and eventually disintegrates into thin, splintery frag- 
ments. When in contact with the dolerite intrusions this 
shale is found very indurated and very much resembles in 
appearance the overlying sandstone. 


The kopjes around the pan are hke most of the kopjes of 
the Colony, in reaHty smah outhers composed of dolerite or 
of sediments altered by the heat received from intrusions of 
that rock. 

I want you, then, to imagine yourself standing on the farm 
Poortje looking across the huge basin. It is a desolate but 
beautiful sight whether seen after a heavy rain, when the floor 
is almost covered with water, which hundreds of flamingoes 
have discovered, or in the dry season, when it is white with 

What is the origin of the pan and where does the salt come 
from ? Evidently the depression has been produced by one of 
two means — subsidence or erosion. 

The subsidence theory will first be considered. 

This theory at first glance appears very plausible when con- 
sidered in connection with the question of the accumulation of 
salt in the pan. If a stratum of salt existed in the rocks under- 
neath the pan and this were gradually diminished by solution, 
a subsidence of the overlying beds would ensue. Salt in the 
form of brine might then reach the surface in the form of 
springs or by capillary attraction. 

Facts, however, are against the subsidence theory. The 
■dip of the rocks forming the sides of the pan is uniformly 
south-east. Neither is there evidence of faulting. 

Water then must have carried away these thousands of tons 
of disintegrated rock. If, however, erosion is the explanation 
of the basin there must have been at one tifne or other an 
outlet through which the rocks filling this area were carried 
away in solution and suspension. 

Nor is the position of this one-time outlet to this inland 
lake difficult to find. The south edge of the pan is not bordered 
by kopjes. The edge of the pan here is bounded by a swamp 
whose southern edge is formed by sand dunes. Intercalated 
with the sand are masses of peat — probably the formation of 
successive swamps. On these dunes the baths are built, and 
the water in the springs supplying" them possibly derives its 
large quantity of marsh gas from the peat of the district. 

Boreholes, sunk almost to the depth of the pan bed, have 
been put down near the baths, but no solid rock has been met 
with. We can take it then that some thousands of years ago 
the district occupied by the salt pan was a point for the con- 
centration of the surface waters from a large catchment area, 
as is still the case. These waters weathered away the sofi 
shales and sandstones surrounded by the semicircle of dolerite 
and metamorphosed shale and sandstone, now forming the 
rim of the pan to north, east and west. The sediment was 
carried away probably through a channel leading from the pan 
at the south-east near the baths, and entering the Modder 
River near Lombaard's Drift. 

In dry seasons large stretches of sand lay over the bed of 
the lake, and the powerful north-west winds blew this to the 
south-east corner, forming" huge dunes containing marshes. 
Thus the outlet was eventually sealed, and the lake became a 
small inland sea. 


The next problem is "Where does the salt come from?" 
As against its coming- from below in the form of springs or by 
capillary attraction I adduce the following facts. 

1. Salt beds are unknown to occur in the Ecca series. 

2. No trace of rock salt has been found in deep borings at 
Kroonstad, which is on the same line of strike as the salt pan. 

3. Wells sunk in the pan show a diminution in the per- 
centage of salt the deeper they are sunk, except for the first 
few feet. 

4. The warm spring supplying the baths, whose water must 
have risen some hundreds of feet, if we are to take its tempera- 
ture as an indication, is, to say the most, only brackish. This 
brackishness would result from the water's flowing through 
the sand, which contains a large quantity of salt. 

Neither can the salt come from a layer situated in higher 
ground around the pan. If such a layer ever existed it would 
have been carried away by solution long ago. 

The salt, then, is evidently collected from the ordinarv sur- 
face rocks of the district. After a heavy rain many hundreds 
of tons of water, which has run over a large catchment area, 
are collected in this great flat pan. The only outlet for the 
water is above — by evaporation — the salts remain behind. 
The present collection of the pan floor of one or two feet of 
mud impregnated with salt is the result of evaporation that 
has been carried on for thousands of years. 

The dams on the side of the pan contain fresh water; there 
IS no salt deposited in them, but this is obviously because they 
have existed for comparatively only a few years. 

Many hundreds of tons of salt are taken from the pan every 
year, and it would be interesting to know for how long this 
abstraction could take place at a given rate. 

This would be a fairly easy determination. The depth of 
mud overlying the shales is fairly uniform, and its average 
depth could readily be obtained. The average quantitv of 
salt in each cubic foot of mud could be calculated bv deter- 
mining the quantity in numerous specimens. This quantity 
multiplied by the number of cubic feet in the pan will give 
the total amount of salt. 

Besides the question of how much salt the pan contains, 
there is the interesting matter of evaporation of the brine. 
The system of natural evaporation in sail cloths is too slow to 
allow a large development of the industry. What is needed is 
cheap coal to supply the heat for artificial evaporation. 

Little doubt now exists as to coal underlying practicallv the 
whole of the Free State. It reaches the surface at the base 
of the Ecca series at Vereeniging, and in several places in the 
East Rand; also near the top of the same series in the west 
of Natal. 

Coal, then, probably lining the bottom of the syncline, exists 
in the district of the Salt Pan. But this stratum will probably 
be found to lie too deep for pracitcal mining purposes. Other 
layers, however, lying in the middle of the series mav be dis- 


I have dealt with the salt pan at Haagenstad merely from 
its geological aspect, but even for those who do not take an 
interest in that point of view, it is well worth a visit. I shall 
not easily forget my first sight of it. It was at night, and we 
drove over the south-eastern corner on our way to Poortje, 
where, by the kindness of Mr. George Scott, I was staying. 
The steps of the horses were muffled in the soft ground ; the 
white salt sparkled under the light of the lamp and stretched 
into the distance until it looked like grey mist; the salt sizzled 
under the wheels and hissed in the breeze like fine, dry snow. 
The appearance was that of a still, frosty, European night;: 
but it was a warm African evening. 

Covered with water at sunset, dotted with flamingoes and 
reflecting on its smooth surface, the clouds still hanging in 
the sky "after a heavy rain, it is perhaps one of the prettiest 
siehts in the Colonv. 

recently Professor of Zoology and (ieology at \'ictoria Col- 
lege, Stellenbosch, has been awarded by the Geological Societ\' 
the Lyell Fund for 1910, together with accompanying diploma, 
in recognition of his extensive and brilliant researches in the 
field of .South African palaeontology. 

POLONIUM.- — At a recent meeting of the Paris Academy of 
Sciences Madame P. Curie and M. bebierne gave an account 
of their recent researches with regard to polonium. Many 
tons of uranium mineral residues were employed in the ex- 
traction of about 200 grammes of material, with an activity, 
due to polonium, equal to about 3.500 times the activity of 
uranium. The precipitate obtained weighed about one 
gramme, and herein was concentrated all the original activity. 
After repeated solution and precipitation, a purified product 
was obtained, weighing some milligrammes, but still contain- 
ing, according to spectroscopic tests, mercury, silver, tin, gold, 
palladium, rhodium, platinum, lead, zinc, barium, calcium, and 
aluminium. When purified from these only 2 milligrammes 
of material were left, and by activity measvn"ements it was 
shown that in this was contained o.i milligramme of polonium, 
a quantity which should theoretically be extracted from about 
two tons of pitchblende. It was found that helium to the ex- 
tent of 1-3 cubic millimetres in 100 days was produced, and an 
abundant production of ozone was likewise observed. The 
exact nature of the residue left after the disappearance of the 
polonium could not yet be determined, but it was expected 
that it may prove to be lead. A small quartz capsule, in which 
the dry polonium was kept, cracked most curiously in a large 
number of places under the substance; this, it is supposed, was 
due to electric discharge. 



By C. C. Robertson, M.F. 

This subject is so much more difficult than that, say, of the 
introduction of farm crops which mature in one or two seasons 
and it has hitherto been so httle studied from a scientific point 
of view in this or any other country, that I certainly do not claim 
to be able to lay down any fixed laws. 

The practical importance of the subject to the unforested parts 
of South A'rica is too obvious to require comment, but probably 
it is of almost equal importance to our indigenous forests if they 
are to be brought into a state of sufficiently rapid production 
to allow of their economic management in the future. 

In the other branches of the science of Forestry, we can look 
to some other countries, and particularly to Germany, for a 
considerable knowledge of the fundamental principles, but the 
scientific naturalisation of exotic trees has so far received com- 
paratively I'ttle attention in these countries. It is, however, 
true that during the last thirty years considerable importance 
has been attached to the subject in Germany and definite ex- 
periments have been carried on there. While it is claimed 
that the credit of this is due to a nurseryman, John Booth, 
who first persuaded the Forest Administration, through Bismarck, 
to undertake the systematic introduction of exotics, the subject 
in Ge many is now most closely connected with the name of Pro- 
fessor Mayr, of Munchen, who has not only carried on experiments 
with many of the important timber trees of America and Asia for 
several years, but has also laid down some general principles. 
Although some of his theories do not seem to have been based 
on his own experience, nor to be supported by experience 
elsewhere, they have at least been of great value in directing 
scientific thought to the subject. 

In Great Britain, the introduction of exotics for forest purposes 
has received some practical attention, but not much has been 
added to the science of the question. The latter has been given 
much more notice in America, where its foundation, namely the 
ecological study of plant distribution, is perhaps receiving more 
consideration than in any other country. 

In South Africa, most foresters have necessarily given thought 
to the subject, and probably more experimental planting of 
exotics has been carried out here than in any other part of the 
Avorld, and it has yielded some results of great practical value. 
L'nfortunately, however, much of it has been of comparatively 
small value, owing to lack of central organisation and continuity 
of direction, insufficient scientific method, incomplete records, 
and unsuitable sylvicultural treatments. Moreover, over a 
large part of the country, no planting at all was done until recent 


years, and much of that which was done was chiefly with quite 
unsuitable species, while in all parts many species, likely to prove 
suitable, have not yet been tried at all. 

In short, it must be said that, while we have ample practical 
knowledge and experience to justify afforestation on a large scale 
now, not only does much methodical experimentation remain 
to be done but also w^e have so far gained only a somewhat vague 
knowledge of the underlying principles which should both be based 
on, and be the basis of, the practical work. 

It should be said that much useful work was done by Mr. D. E. 
Hutchins in emphasising the importance of climatic suitability, 
though possibly his special theory of the importance of the dif- 
ference between a winter and summer rainfall climate, is not 
entirely supported by practical experience. 

Before proceeding, it seems desirable to define some terms 
which are often used loosely and interchangeably, but which should 
have distinct meanings. 

The " Introduction " of an exotic does not necessarily imply 
that the introduction is a desirable one or that the species becomes 

" Acclimatisation " implies that the species is not at first suited, 
or is only partially ^uited, to its new surroundings, but becomes 
adapted to them in one or more generations as the result of the 
influence of environment. 

The " Natural Adaptability " of a species is not the same as 
its capacity for acclimatisation, but denotes its inherent capacity 
for thriving under conditions dissimilar to its native ones, without 
undergoing any process of adaptation. 

" Naturalisation " takes place when the species is either already 
suited to its new home, or becomes acclimatised to it, and, 
though in the latter case it may sometimes be accompanied by 
some deterioration, it necessarily implies that the species lives 
to maturity and is capable, at least to some extent, of natural 

It may seem unnecessary to define a " Forest Tree " or a " Forest," 
but when one is concerned with a country like this in which there 
are almost all degrees of humidity, one must be ready to accept 
very broad definitions of these terms. Broadly speaking, a forest 
is any continuous arborescent growth which serves some useful 
purpose and includes the growth of mimosa on the Modder River 
as well as the Yellowwood forests of the coasts mountains. The 
desirable exotic introductions may possibly include similar ex- 
tremes of species and forest form. 

The extent to which acclimatisation of tree species can take 
place is a doubtful question. From the analogy of other forms 
of life there seems good reason to suppose that it is a possibility, 
but it is probably usually a very slow process. At any rate 
some cases of apparent acclimatisation are due to physical and 
not physiological causes. For instance, when a tree appears 
to become hardier to drought or frost as it passes out of the 
seedling stage, it is usually because its crown rises above the 
cold layer of air next to the ground, while its roots penetrate 


below the surface layer of soil which is most liable to drying- 
out and to freezing. On the other hand, the tendency of de- 
ciduous trees to become evergreen when transferred to a warmer 
climate and vice versa, appear to be cases of true acclimatisation. 

The basis for the distinction between natural adaptability and 
capacity for acclimatisation is the fact that the native environ- 
ment of a species is not necessarily that which suits it best 
and that it may have been excluded by the competition of other 
species or by physical barriers from other environments which 
suit it equally well, if not better. 

A species is found in a certain habitat not so much because 
the latter is the one most suited to it as because it is more suited 
to the habitat than are the other species which have had a chance 
of establishing themselves in it. To take an instance from the 
introduction of an exotic, Rohinia makes better growth and reaches 
a greater height in England than in its home in the Appalachians. 

At any rate, different species show a great difference in their 
degree of adaptability when transferred to new habitats. While 
some Eastern American trees thrive well in England, others, 
associated with them in America, thrive badly in England. 

Though adaptability to a whole new set of conditions may 
be out of the question, yet adaptability to a certain factor is quite 
possible and may be of practical consequence, for instance, the 
greater hardiness to frost of one out of two species which come 
from the same habitat and are both introduced to a colder but 
otherwise similar one. 

Perhaps we may expect to find the greatest capacity for ac- 
climatisation in species whose wide range includes several variations 
in locality, or in species which show a great tendency to botanical 
variation and appear to be in an uncertain stage of evolution, 
such as many of the Mexican pines. On the other hand, we may 
perhaps expect the greatest natural adaptability in species with 
narrow ranges to which they have been confined by some physical 

Acclimatisation and natural adaptability can usually only be 
ascertained by prolonged experiments and meanwhile it is safest 
to place no reliance on them. The possibility of them, however, 
must always be borne in mind when drawing conclusions from 

The introduction of an exotic which does not reach maturity or 
become naturalised may yet, under some circumstances, serve a 
useful forestal purpose and give financially profitable results. Its 
cultivation under such conditions cannot be denied the name of 
forestry and may be by no means undesirable, at least until a 
suitable species which serves the same purpose is discovered. 
However the idea of permanancy is so intimately wrapped up 
with that of forestry that naturalisation must always be our aim, 
and it is only by working in accordance with the laws of nature 
that truly successful and permanent results are to be obtained. 

One sometimes hears it said that Nature evidently did not mean 
a treeless country to be afforested, and that for man to attempt 
to do it will prove a useless fight against her. At first sight there 


may be some grounds for such a view, because, generally speaking, 
similar climates throughout the world produce similar types of 
vegetation, and a veld vegetation is produced in other countries 
besides South Africa by a sub-humid or semi-arid, extra-tropical, 
summer-rainfall climate. This point of view^ however, neglects 
several important considerations. 

Firstly, there are many cases of successful afforestation in treeless 

Secondly, a grass and forest vegetation are found together in 
other parts of the world, either in separated patches according to 
situation, drainage, etc., or with the grass actually as undergrowth 
under somewhat open forest. This is, at any rate, the case with the 
coniferous forests of Western America. 

Thirdly, everything that man does is more or less artificial, and 
while he cannot change the laws of Nature, he is constantly altering 
Nature herself. For instance, it is said that forest vegetation has 
advanced appreciably over the American prairies during the last 
generation, as a result of man's action in keeping the dense grass 
grazed down, preventing the prairie fires, leaving fallow fields and, 
in short, by his artificially improving the conditions for the natural 
extension of the forest. The most obvious way, however, by 
which man can render natural conditions more suitable for forest 
vegetation is by himself establishing the forests. All Forest 
Meteorologists are, I think, now agreed that most forests increase 
relative humidity, reduce evaporation and increase the capacity 
of the soil for the absorption and retention of moisture. It is 
specially these factors which are of vital importance on the border- 
land between forest and grass land, and Professor Mayr lays stress 
on this point. He says : — 

" The formation of trees of a more or less dense cover tends to increase 
the humidity of the air beneath the crown cover by a maximum of io%. 
We can merely mention here how important this function of the forest must 
be for the existence of the forest wherever an air humidity of 50% for the 
four vegetative months (which he states is the essential minimum) is 
approached (e.g., the successful growth of artificially established plantations.") 

Also as a result of the protection of a forest cover, natural regenera- 
tion may take place easily where the initial aftorestation has been 
of great difficulty. 

Fourthly, there is the most important consideration that there 
has been a large element of what we may call " chance " in the 
evolution of the world's vegetation. Regions have been isolated 
from the rest of the world by geological changes, oceans, the tropics 
and so on, and genera or species which thrive in one region have 
been physically prevented from spreading to similar regions else- 
where. It only requires the hand of man to overcome the natural 
barriers. For instance, the genus Piniis is confined to the Northern 
Hemisphere, and South Africa is cut off from the latter by the 
Tropics, and yet we know that several species of pines become 
readily naturalised here. 

I feel convinced that had South Africa been connected, say, with 
.Western America, a large part of her interior would have been 
clothed with pine forests. 


The same considerations obviously apply equally to the even 
less well founded objection that it is contrary to Nature to attempt 
to introduce exotic trees into indigenous forests. 

Even the better founded statement of some authorities that it 
should never be attempted to extend the range of a species within 
its forest region on the grounds that it would have been extended 
naturally, if it were possible, is not necessarily always true, be- 
cause it neglects the facts that climates are changing and species 
are migrating (for instance, Norway Spruce) and that their migra- 
tions lag behind the changes in climate ; it neglects also the 
influences of the competition of the other species and of the control 
of man. A notable case of the successful extension of the range 
of a species within its forest region is that of the introduction of 
Silver Fir into Scandinavia. 

When practical German foresters are departing from their ultra- 
conservative attitude on the introduction of exotics and are being 
persuaded that the latter is possible and will improve their already 
excellent forests, we need hardly hesitate as to the soundness of 
the same policy with regard to our indigenous forests. B. E. 
Fernow may be quoted on this point. He says : — 

" While it may still be safest to rely upon the native flora, yet if exotics- 
climatically adapted, promise more rapid growth, larger production, sylvi- 
cultural quantities or quality of wood superior to the native, as for in- 
stance the Norway Spruce, it is proper policy to supplant the inferior native." 

There certainly seems room for improvement in the production 
of our native forests, and there are a large number of exotics with 
rapid growth and valuable products, which are climatically suited 
to the indigenous forest country of South Africa. 

The Principles of Naturalisation. 

To come, at length, to the principles of naturalisation, there is 
if w^e neglect acclimatisation and natural adaptability, in reality 
only one principle ; that is — fit the local habitat with species whose 
native home has the same factors of habitat or their equivalent. 
In other words, it is merely the consideration of what are the 
essential factors of locality and to what extent and in which direc- 
tion a certain difference in any one of the factors will operate. 

There are two kinds of factors of locality — i.e., those of climate, 
and those of soil ; and of these the former, namely. Temperature, 
Moisture, and Light, are usually by far the most important. 


The mean annual temperature is of very little value for eco- 
logical purposes, and should be entirely disregarded except in 
connection with other data. As Professor Mayr points out, the 
annual temperature at the upper limit of tree growth on mountains 
at the equator is 50° F., or the same as that of the parts of Europe 
where oak, tobacco, and the grape find their optimum. In other 
words, the total amount of heat received during the year is by 
itself of no consequence to plant distribution. 

What are, however, of vital importance are the amount and 
degree of heat during the growing season, and these are measured 


by the mean temperature during the growing season and its dura- 
tion. Thus 50° F. is the mean temperature during the growing 
season at the Hmits of the forest both on mountains at the equator 
and on the borders of the Arctic regions, though the latter's mean 
annual temperature is, I beheve, below the freezing point. Prof. 
Mayr implies that the localities of all species of a certain genus 
throughout the world have approximately the same mean tem- 
perature for the growing season. For instance, the latter, in the 
case of the Beeches, is always between 59° and 64° F. 

This may be of practical value in the case of a small genus such 
as Fagus, but is obviously of no practical value in the case 
of a large genus, such as Pinus, which is found in localities whoss 
mean temperatures during the growing season probably differ in 
as much as 15° or 20° F. What is probably of the utmost im- 
portance is that the locality to which a certain species is 
introduced and its native locality should have the same mean 
temperature during the growing season within very narrow limits. 
Possibly the mean maxima and mean minima temperatures during 
the growing season would be still more subtle and reliable guides 
than the mean temperature, but probably the latter is sufficient 
for practical purposes. Not only does a species require a certain 
minimum mean temperature, during the growing season, but 
also it cannot endure more than a certain mean maximum tem- 
perature during the hottest part of the year. It is probable 
that the latter fact is the chief explanation of the failure of some 
European species in this country, such as Pinus sylvestris. 

The mean temperatures during the dormant season are of 
no consequence. No proof of the importance of absolute minimum 
temperature is required in South Africa, after the numerous 
attempts to grow sub-tropical species in the cold interior, but 
it should be mentioned here that the minimum temperature 
which a certain species will endure varies greatly with the warmth 
and moisture, of the soil, the atmospheric humidity', and the 
presence or absence of wind. 

The average difference between the mean temperatures of the 
hottest and coldest months is a very useful guide to the extent 
to which a climate is a continental one. On the Pacific Coast 
of America the range is about 25° F., while on the Atlantic Coast 
it is 45° F. in the same latitude, and it is not surprising that 
species from the former will not grow in the latter. The range 
of temperature by itself is, however, of no use in the selection of 
species. It is roughly the same here as in England. '~<si 

The liability of a locality to late and early frosts, together with 
the duration of the growing season of a species, is of much im- 
portance. The shorter the natural growing season of an exotic 
species is, the less is the danger from these frosts, but it must 
be remembered that the length of its growing season, though 
largely hereditary, will be affected by season of rainfall and 
local changes in soil moisture. In a climate with wet summers, 
a species is more likely to suffer from early frosts and in a climate 
with early spring rains, it is more likely to suffer from late frosts. 

Generally speaking it is the safest to introduce a species to 


a slightly warmer climate having a rather longer growing season 
than those of its native habitat. 


The second chief factor of climate is moisture. The average 
annual rainfall by itself is of little value when comparing climates, 
but what are of importance are the range of annual rainfall, the 
minimum rainfall in any year, the season of rainfall, and the nature 
of the rainfall. It is only when these are more or less similar 
for two climates that the average annual rainfall indicates cor- 
rectly their relative wetness. Consequently the statement which 
is sometimes made, that forest growth is found where the mean 
annual rainfall is 20 inches or more, is only an unreliable 

The range of annual rainfall is expressed by the ratio of the 
lowest to the highest annual rainfall. In humid regions the 
ratio is usually about 2:3; while in desert regions it is sometimes 
1 : 8. The ratio in most places on the high veld of South Africa 
seems to be about 1:2. 

The minimum rainfall in any one year is probably of greater 
consequence in the distribution of species than the mean annual 
rainfall ; and so, even where the latter may be fairly high, the 
growth of a species may be impossible if the minimum rainfall 
is very low. Some species, however, show a remarkable capacity 
for enduring such years of extreme drought. For instance, on 
the table-land of Arizona records in the middle of the forests 
of Pinus ponderosa with an average annual rainfall of about 20 
inches, show a minimum rainfall of only 7 inches. 

The nature of the rainfall especially as to its frequency, inclusion 
of mist and so on, is of great consequence in determining the 
moistness of a climate, and figures of rainfall should always be 
accompanied by the number of days on which the rain falls. 

Closely connected with this are the relative humidity of the 
atmosphere and the rate of evaporation. The former of these is 
probably quite sufficient by itself to limit the range of some species 
owing to its influence on the rate of transpiration, (as for instance 
silver fir, hemlock and probably the Yellow-w^oods), and abundant 
soil moisture with such species would not compensate for a low 
atmospheric humidity, for the latter would induce an excessive 
rate of transpiration from the leaves, which the trees is physio- 
logically unable to endure. Other species, however, are decidedly 
adaptable in this respect, if given sufficient soil moisture. 

It has already been mentioned that Professor Mayr states 
that forest growth requires an average relative humidity during 
the growing season of not less than 50%. This seems only to have 
been based on observations on the edge of the prairies in Eastern 
America, and cannot be taken as a world-wide rule. Probably 
the figure would be a good deal lower on the border of some 
forests such as the Eucalyptus forests in the interior of Australia. 
At Bloemfontein the average relative humidity at 8.30 a.m. for 
the seven months from September to March is 61%, and at Lindley 
it is 70%. 


The relative humidity in winter must also not be neglected. 
Even if growth is dormant, a low relative humidity with warm 
days and especially if accompanied by wind, will cause rapid 
transpiration from evergreens, which is likely to result in injury 
by drought and which also accentuates the danger from frost. 
A species accustomed to a dry winter climate is less likely to 
suffer from these causes than one from a moist winter climate. 

Hence care must be taken with regard to both summer and 
winter humidity in the selection of species, but from the general 
point of view of the possibility of forest growth, a large part 
of South Africa, including the high veld, is in a favourable position, 
even if we accept Professor Mayr's figure and make no allowance 
for the influence of the forest itself. 

Evaporation is also a most important factor in connection 
both with the process of transpiration and with the loss of moisture 
generally from the soil. It must always be taken into consider- 
ation together with the rainfall when determining the moisture 
demands of a species and the available moisture of any locality. 
In a paper on the zonal distribution of forests in Eastern America, 
Mr. E. N. Transeau takes as the main basis of distribution, not 
temperature, but the combined factor of the ratio of rainfall to 
evaporation and is supported in this by B. E. Fernow. It 
is interesting that he finds that the borderland between the 
deciduous Eastern forest and the prairie has a rainfall of about 
80 per cent, of the evaporation, but here again this cannot be 
accepted as a world-wide rule. Probably the percentage is 
much lower, for instance, in the case of the borderland between 
coniferous forest and grassland in the South-West of America. 

Season of Rainfall. The season in which the rainfall occurs, 
though of much importance, has perhaps received greater em- 
phasis than it is entitled to, as compared with other factors, 
such as temperatures of the growing season, and atmospheric 
humidity, although it does largely control these. At any rate, 
it does not seem to have been recognised sufficiently that conifers 
are much less likely to be affected by the season of rainfall than 
are broad-leaved species. 

It is difhcult to say whether, with a given annual rainfall, the 
amount of moisture available for forest growth is affected by the 
season in which the rain falls. On the one hand, a winter rainfall 
occurs when growth is dormant and a greater proportion of it is 
lost by percolation deep into the soil before growth begins ; while, 
on the other hand, a summer rainfall occurs in the growing season 
but when evaporation is most active, so that a greater proportion 
of it is lost by this means. A given rainfall may produce woody 
growth if it is a winter one, but not if it is a summer one, but the 
explanation of this is probably to be found rather in the competition 
from grass in the latter case, for evidently a summer rainfall is 
much more favourable than a winter one for shallow-rooted plants. 
By the establishment of a forest and its proper sylvicultural treat- 
ment, this competition with grass is removed. 

Hence, on the whole, it seems probable that as regards the total 
moisture requirements of a spieces, it does not make much differ- 
ence whether a given rainfall occurs in winter or summer. 


Usually a winter-rainfall climate means a very hot dry summer, 
which summer-rainfall species are likely to be unable to stand, 
and, on the other hand, winter rainfall species are often unable ta 
endure the dry winters and particularly the hot dry windy springs 
which so often characterise summer-rainfall climates. 

This, however, does not seem to apply to conifers, and at any 
rate Pinus pinaster, Pinits halepensis and Cnpressus sempervirens, 
all of which come from a winter rainfall climate, do not seem tO' 
object in the least to a dry winter climate. The reason no doubt 
is that they do not start growth in the same sudden way that 
deciduous trees do, and that they are inherently more hardy to 
drought than most broad-leaved species, owing to their less rapid 
transpiration. On the other hand, deciduous trees retain their 
inherited characteristic of budding out with the warmth of spring, 
irrespective of the quantity of moisture in the soil, the water 
stored in the wood and roots being sufficient to start growth, and 
subsequently they suffer severely from drought when the roots 
are unable to keep up the water-supply. However, we may perhaps 
expect to find exceptions to this in some deciduous species, 
such as Gleditsia and Madura, which thrive in the summer-rainfall 
climate of the American prairies. The indigenous mimosa is 
adapted to the dry springs here in that it comes into leaf late. 
Some species in the South-West of America, where there are two 
distinct wet seasons in winter and summer, come into leaf in early 
spring, then lose their leaves as provision against the drought in 
early summer and come into leaf again on the advent of the summer 

A winter-rainfall climate, however, does not always include a 
dry, hot summer. For instance, though the rainfall of the home 
of Pinus insignis occurs in winter, yet it has a very high atmos- 
pheric humidity in summer when it is frequently bathed in sea 
mists. This species is much more out of place in a truly winter- 
rainfall climate such as the Cape Flats or the interior of California 
with their intensely hot dry summers, than in the mist-belt of 
mountains of Eastern South Africa, where it promises to thrive 
just as well, if not better, than in its native home. Thus is also 
explained its at any rate partial success in some of the better- 
watered parts of the high veld, when planted on cool aspects and 
in soil which is deep and retentive enough to compensate for the 
absence of winter and spring rains. 


The factor of light is so intricately connected with those of 
temperature and moisture that we cannot deal with it here, but 
probably it is one of the important factors in the distribution of 
species. A difference in it can also perhaps be compensated for 
by a difference in one of the other factors. For instance, it is 
said that the moister the locality, the less shade can a species en- 
dure. The Douglas Fir is light-demanding in Oregon but shade- 
bearing or even shade-demanding in the Rocky Mountains. Such 
cases, however, do not prove that there is any change in the 
absolute intensity of light required by the species, for the varying 


intensities of light in different climates must be remembered. 
The light under a forest here may be equally intense with full light 
in, say, England, so that a light-demanding species from the latter 
would be apparently shade-bearing here. 


The second chief factor of locality is the soil, which though not 
so important by itself as climate, must be by no means neglected, 
with regard both to its mineral composition and also to its relation 
to the factors of climate, especially to moisture. 

It is generally recognised that the mineral composition of soils 
is of comparatively little importance, but this generalisation is apt 
to lead to too much neglect of it. It is sometimes the only factor 
which causes a change in tree distribution and an excess or 
deficiency of a certain mineral food will prohibit the growth of a 
species. Consequently a locality may be quite unsuited to a 
certain exotic even though the climate is entirely suitable. Pinns 
pinaster fails owing to a quantity of lime in the soil in which Piniis 
halepensis delights, while the latter will fail if a certain minimum 
of lime is not present. Most species cannot endure more than a 
small amount of " brak," whereas others, such as Red Gum, can 
stand a comparatively large quantity. 

Some species show much natural adaptability in this respect, 
and others show little and much remains to be learnt on the ques- 

The influence of depth, permeability, retentive capacity of soil, 
the level of the water table, and the degree of slope, on the available 
moisture supply under any given climatic conditions, and conse- 
quently on the distribution of species, is well known, and when 
introducing an exotic careful judgment must be used in deciding 
what difference in these factors will compensate for a difference in 
the climatic factors, and vice versa. Generally speaking, a deeper 
or more rententive soil, may compensate for a drier climate. 

These factors of soil may, however, be of consequence by them- 
selves. For instance, some species demand a loose soil and will 
not thrive in a compact one whatever the moisture of the latter 
may be. 

Again, the relation of a soil to temperature is of importance in 
compensating for a difference in climate. Species from a warmer 
climate may thrive in a colder one when planted on warm soils, 
but will succumb on cold soils. 

Aspect, elevation and latitude need not be considered here because 
they are only of importance in controlling the climate, but we are 
warned that they must never be neglected when comparing locali- 
ties, by the very distinct effect we know them to have upon the 
local distribution of species. 

Climatic Varieties. 

In the above considerations, I have only referred to the selection 
of the suitable species, but the same considerations apply to the 
selectioh of the suitable " Climatic variety " of a given species. 
The difference between these climatic varieties, as regards quality 


of product, rapidity of growth and forest form and ecological 
requirements, has received much attention in Europe in the case 
of the more important indigenous forest species, in connection 
with sources of seed-supply. It has been proved by extensive 
experiments in Germany and Austria that these varieties are 
inherited (though the degree of inheritance varies with different 
species) and the conclusion is drawn that it is always best to obtain 
seed for reforestation in a certain zone from the climatic variety 
indigenous to that zone. For instance, Norway Spruce from 
seeds from alpine situations, when grown in lowland situations, 
retains its characteristics of slower growth and more stunted 
form and is not even more hardy to frost than the lowland variety 
because it retains its characteristic of budding out earlier in spring 
and is more liable to suffer from late frosts. A German, Schott, 
experimented with seed of Scotch pine from 62 different localities 
and found great differences among them as to physiological 
characteristics. Vilmorin-Andrieux & Co. have growing in their 
testing ground about 30 different varieties of Scotch pine, according 
to the source of the seed, while in Sweden it is a rule of the Forest 
Administration to use only Swedish seed of Scotch Pine for 
their reforestation. Black Walnut from seed from the Mississippi 
States is killed by frost in the North-Eastern states, though the 
range of the species includes the latter. 

If these inherited climatic varieties are of such importance 
in the transference of a species from one climatic zone of its 
natural range to another, it is only a corollary to assume that they 
are of equal importance when introducing an exotic species. We 
have certainly had sufficient experience of the varying hardiness 
to frost of some species of gums to support this contention. It 
is quite possible that some species of trees, w'hich have so far 
proved partial failures here, would have proved complete successes, 
not only if they had been tried in different localities here, but also 
if their seed had been obtained from different localities in their 
native range. Hence for afforestation in this country, it will 
be desirable to obtain the seed of a certain species from various 
localities in its natural home to fit corresponding localities here. 
For instance, seed of Piniis pinaster from the Landes should be 
suitable for the Western Province, but for this Colony we are 
now obtaining its seed from the drier climate of the South of 

Sometimes, though not always, these biological varieties coincide 
with more or less distinct botanical varieties, as in the case of 
some of the varieties of Scotch Pine and probably of many Eu- 
calyptus, but these botanical varieties may themselves cover 
a wide range of localities and so may not be sufficiently accurate 
guides. It is naturally with these species or botanical varieties 
having wide ranges that most care as to the origin of seed-supplies 
is necessary. 

Possible external aids in the selection of species. 

Morphological characteristics of species, such as the well-known 
xerophytic and halophytic adaptations, deserve mention, though 


they can only be used as rough guides. For instance, trees with 
broad soft horizontal leaves are obviously out of place in a dry 
climate. Trees from dry mountain or desert regions with their 
characteristic glaucous leaves, which reflect insolation and prevent 
excessive temperatures in the leaves, are out of place in misty 
climates, the dark green vegetation of which is adapted to absorb 
all the available insolation. 

Influence of Scientific Naturalisation on the Form 

OF Forests. 

Before concluding, it may not be out of place to suggest the 
influence which the scientific introduction of exotic trees must 
have on the form of our plantations with regard to mixtures. 
Whether or not mixed forests are desirable for other reasons, 
it is obvious that where there are many local variations in habitat^ 
there must usually be a corresponding number of suitable species. 
This is perhaps particularly true of comparatively dry regions 
in which slight changes in depth or nature of soil or in situation 
make a considerable difference in the moisture conditions, but 
it is also true of more humid regions. Almost all the forests of 
the world consist of mixtures either of alternately pure stands, 
or of mixed stands in which one species preponderates in one 
locality and another in another. In forming mixed plantations 
we are thus working in accordance with the laws of nature. 

Of course notable examples of pure forest exist in nature, such 
as the pine forests of the plains of Prussia or the Landes of France 
and it may be justifiable to reproduce these in aftorestation 
here, but only where the same natural cause exists, that is uniformity 
in factors of locality over a considerable area. 

The question of whether mixed stands of two species which 
are both more or less suitable to the locality, are desirable, is 
not in place here except that reference may be made to the fact 
that it may often be desirable to make temporary mixtures with 
nurse-trees and to the probability that many species which will 
be failures in pure forest owing to their demands for shade and 
relative humidity, will be successful as understories in permanent 
mixtures, or at least may be sufficiently successful to play the 
important role of undergrowth. 

In conclusion, I may say that the scientific study and practical 
application of this branch of forestry in South Africa requires 
centralisation and continuity of control as much as, if not more 
than, any other branch, and it is only by the unification of the 
various Forest Departments, that the best organisation for this 
work will be rendered possible. 

PIDOUX'S COMET. —During- the latter half of February 
another new comet was discovered by M. Pidoux at the Geneva 
Observatory. The comet, which takes the designation 19 lo b, 
occupied a position somewhat to the north of a point between 
£ and c Piscium, Hallev's comet at the time near to 
the latter star, and less than ih degrees distant from the new 


By K. A. HoBART Houghton. B.A. 

I propose to consider briefly that somewhat neglected but 
important branch of native education, agricultural training. And 
in doing so one has at least this satisfaction that here, at any 
rate, is a phase of the vexed native problem upon which there is 
little ground for controversy. For, whatever opinions may be 
held as to the wisdom of allowing natives to advance to secondary 
and higher education, and whatever arguments there may be 
against training native artisans to compete in the labour market 
against skilled European workmen, it is difficult to imagine what 
objections can be urged against instructing natives how to make 
a better use than they do at present of the land they possess. It 
does not bring them into competition with white labour — that 
bugbear of our proud Anglo-Saxon race — it sends them back among 
their own people, it increases the natural wealth of the country, 
and tends to raise their standard of living, and, in consequence, 
to increase the general trade carried on with them. 

But there are two outstanding reasons why agricultural training 
for natives should be developed. Of all the land reserved for the 
exclusive use of natives, over 220,000 square miles are occupied 
communally. That is to say, that, with rare exceptions — for the 
progressive native farmer, whose land has not been granted him by 
Government on individual tenure, usually purchases a farm for 
himself — this great extent of country is handled in the most wasteful 
way ; mealies, kafir corn, pumpkins and beans are practically the 
sole products, raised too only to supply the present needs of the 
cultivators ; the stock is scarce and poor ; the land is being denuded 
of its valuable timber. The annual loss to the country from this 
kind of occupation must be something enormous, and will continue 
until some even elementary knowledge of agriculture spreads 
among the people. 

But there is another and a more pressing reason why agricultural 
training should receive attention. In the past the natives have 
been a pastoral people — and still are, to a large extent. But the 
commonages are getting smaller and are unable now to carry the 
population dependent upon them. The result is that with the 
exception of the few progressive natives who are preparing for 
what they recognise the future holds in store, the natives as a 
nation are growing poorer — are becoming an impoverished race. 
Even in prosperous seasons the land cultivated gives no more food 
than is necessary, while fuel and building material are growing 
scarcer every year. 

Unless a widespread movement in the direction of improved 
methods of agriculture take place, and until the native learns how 
to grow food for his stock in times of drought, and to make the 
land produce two bags of mealies where now he reaps only one, 
the situation, as the population continues to increase, will become 


very serious indeed — serious not only to the natives, but also to 
the country as a whole. 

It cannot be said that in past years the subject of agricultural 
■education for natives has received much attention, and this has 
been so not only because as in other parts of the world it is in com- 
paratively recent times that men have come to recognise that 
previous training and a study of the experience of others are essen- 
tial to success in farming, but also because the native has from 
time immemorial regarded labour in the fields as belonging to the 
province of the women and of slaves, fighting and hunting being 
considered more suitable occupations for men. And so, even 
after the men began gradually to take their share in the cultivation 
of the fields, and the plough took the place of the ruder implements 
o{ labour, it has taken many years to convince even the most 
intelligent of natives that he had anj'thing to learn which he did 
not already know. For this reason an attempt, made at Lovedale 
some twenty years ago, to teach agriculture to native students 
was a failure, and, until within the last year or two, all that could 
be done was to try and teach them habits of industry by requiring 
of every resident pupil that two hours a day and three hours on 
Saturdays should be spent in field labour, making and keeping of 
roads, hoeing, etc. 

It was found, however, that such work, having no relation to their 
class-room studies, and being of a kind at which apparently no 
fresh knowledge was obtained, was seldom done with zeal or even 
interest. During the last three years, however, an experiment 
has been made whereby this outdoor work has been organised 
with a view to increasing its educative value. Further, in order 
that the traditional stigma attaching in the native mind to every 
kind of manual labour might be removed, the masters in charge 
of the literary studies, having acquired some technical knowledge 
of such subjects as tree-raising and tree-planting, fencing, dam 
construction and gardening, are now teaching these to the boys, 
University men working with their coats off side by side with them 
in the fields. 

The results have been satisfactory. The work that was formerly 
done " grudgingly and of necessity " is growing in favour. Even 
when European supervision is withdrawn the work has been found 
interesting enough to be worth doing for its own sake. In other 
words, the old attitude of disdain for all form of manual labour is 
giving place — thanks to the example of the men who take charge 
of it, and to the constructive character of the work itself — to an 
increasing appreciation of its value. 

But that is not all. Last year the senior students gathered 
from the trees in Lovedale seeds of the Halepensis and Pitch Pines, 
Pepper, Deodar, Cypress, Eucalyptus and other trees, sowed them, 
and raised over seven thousand seedlings from them. Other 
seedlings of previous sowings were planted out, beside some hun- 
dreds of cuttings from the basket willow and other trees and shrubs. 
The avenues of trees thus planted out are fenced and cultivated by 
the students, who have also constructed a dam for storing water 
for their use in time of drought. 


If one had time one might describe more fully what is being 
attempted, but this will suffice perhaps to indicate a direction 
in which such work might be at once developed with some chance 
of success. Unfortunately this form of training is not yet 
" recognised " by the Government, and in consequence is still 
regarded by many pupils and teachers as a work of supererogation 
— the passing of examinations being the " chief end of man." 

There are, of course, other ways in which a knowledge of agri- 
culture and a desire for such knowledge is being encouraged among 
natives. In the more progressive districts of the Transkeian 
Territories, especially in those where the land is held on individual 
titles, there have been in recent years great advances in the methods 
of farming, and the educated natives there have shown their ap- 
preciation of the value of agricultural training by establishing 
two small agricultural institutions, where native apprentices are 
trained and where an object lesson in up-to-date farming is being 
given to the surrounding districts. On the upkeep of these two 
institutions the Transkeian Territories General Council is spending 
this year £4,654. 

In the Transvaal, also, regulations were recently drawn up 
making gardening or farm work of some kind an integral part of 
the course of a native village school. Of the utility of this in 
teaching habits of industry there can be no doubt. But somewhat 
extensive enquiries made a few years ago by the Cape Government 
Education Department elicited the fact that in the majority of 
cases it was impossible to obtain land suitable for agricultural 
purposes in the vicinity of native schools, the latter being usually 
built on high and rocky ridges of commonage for the sake of dry- 
ness, good drainage and prominence, or because the headman 
who chose the site considered the land as useless for pastoral or 
agricultural purposes. 

Obviously this is a difficulty which could be overcome, but 
there is the further obstacle that, unless the teachers in charge of 
these schools have received practical training in agriculture, their 
labours in this branch of the work will be of little use. I do not 
know how far it has been found possible to insist upon these rules 
being carried out, but, as none of the native institutions of the 
Cape Colony from which the majority of trained teachers have 
in the past come, give instruction in this work, it will be necessary 
to wait some years until another generation of teachers trained 
in agriculture has arisen, before its full benefits are felt. When 
these go out to work they will be an example to the other men of 
their village in the way in which they cultivate the garden lot 
which is usually given to supplement their meagre salary, they 
may, where possible, directly teach gardening and tree-planting 
to their pupils, but perhaps most of all they will help by the atmos- 
phere they create in their schools, in which manual labour will be 
given the dignity and importance that is its due. 


Bv Professor E. H. L. Schwarz, A.R.C.S., F.G.S. 

Geolog-y has inherited many beHefs from mediaeval times,, 
which still remain part of the creed of those who profess to 
base their ideas on solid fact. One of the most ingrained of 
these beliefs is that of a hot. liquid interior of our earth. It 
was proved to the satisfaction of the Mediterranean nations 
by the flows of lava from the chimneys of Etna and Vesuvius, 
and it was the civilisation of these nations which spread and 
was taken up by the rest of the world, so that ideas started 
in Italy became the heritag-e of all thinking men. Then Kant 
and Laplace, with their Nebular hypothesis, put this liquid 
globe theory on a basis which satisfied every condition then 
known or imaginable. If, however, we examine the premises 
of the Laplacian theory; if we put ourselves outside our heredi- 
tary tendencies and dispassionately review the whole question, 
we" shall find that all the so-called proofs and reasons for the 
earth's interior being hot and liquid rest on arguments which 
will not hold water. The lava of Etna, for instance, cannot 
come from any profound depths. The gaseous sphere with 
which Laplace commences his history of the Solar System 
could not have existed, as the kinetic energy of gaseous 
molecules would have prevented their being whirled round in 
a coherent globe; the Solar System, in fact, at the present day, 
instead of affording testimony in favour of the Nebular 
hypothesis, contains so many contradictory evidences that a 
new theory of its origin has become imperatively necessary. 

Not onlv is the philosophy of modern geology destructive 
of the old idols of theory and hypothesis, but it is constructive, 
perhaps merely to set up a new idol, but nevertheless the new 
hvpothesis of the nature of the earth's interior rests on a basis 
of probable fact and stands four-square to modern knowledge. 
I refer to Professor T. C. Chamberlin's Planetismal hypothe- 
sis. I cannot here explain the hypothesis as a whole; it is 
available to all in the Text Book of Geology published by 
Professors Chamberlin and Salisbury; suffice it here to state 
that the theory necessitates the gradual growth of the earth 
from a small, solid nucleus by the infalling of meteorites and 
that it is still growing. My purpose in the present paper is to 
examine some of the results of the physical investigation of 
the surface of the earth which prove by undeniable evidence 
the existence of a solid interior of the earth, which we postulate 
from theoretical considerations if we accept the Planetismal 
hypothesis; and as none of the processes of earth building- 
explained by this hypothesis require a hot interior, we are 
left with presumptive evidence that it is cold. 

In the first place we are now enabled to actually test the 


physical condition of the interior of the earth by means of 
vibrations which travel through it. When an earthquake 
originates at any one place there is sent forth a vibration which 
affects the outer siliceous surface only; the latter heaves as 
an ice-t^oe would upon the surface of an agitated ocean. Be- 
sides this surface quake there are vibrations which travel by 
the brachistochronic or the shortest possible paths right 
through substance of the earth's interior to a spot on the other 
side, where the vibration can be recorded. Now, when a shock 
is communicated to a body, there are two kinds of waves 
that are set up ; there is the normal or compressional vibration, 
which can be propagated in any medium solid, liquid or gas; 
but if the medium is solid, there is a further transverse wave, 
which, on account of its being distortional, cannot be pro- 
pagated in a liquid or gas. The velocities of these two waves 
are very different, and when we find on the recording Seismo- 
graph two distinct vibrations separated by a definite time 
interval, which is proportional to the distance traversed in the 
earth's interior, then we can state that the earth's interior is 
solid throughout. Indeed, we can say more than that. The 
difference in the rates of the two waves is such as would be 
experienced in a medium twice as rigid as steel. Arrhenius 
has maintained that a gas might be so compressed that it 
becomes as compact as a solid, but then it could not transmit 
distortional waves, which can only be propagated in rigid 
substances, and Arrhenius' theory of the gaseous interior of 
the earth must fall to the ground on that fact. 

Tliere is another curious fact connected with earthquakes 
which bears on our subject. For direct paths between two 
points in the earth's crust less than i,ooo miles apart, the one 
being that at which the earthquake occurs and the other being 
that at which it is recorded, the speed of transmission is such 
as is found in waves propagated through ordinary rocky 
material ; but if this straight path penetrates more than 30 
miles below the surface, the waves are accelerated. There is, 
as it were, a globe of high elasticity, twice as rigid as steel, 
immediately below 30 miles in the earth's crust, whereas all 
above is not materially different in physical condition from the 
rocks exposed on the surface. If the earth's interior were 
molten, let alone gaseous, it would be impossible from the laws 
of diffusion for this sharp demiarcation between crust and 
interior to remain in existence. 

Having established the fact that the earth's interior is a 
solid, let us now examine the temperatures observed in the 
earth's crust. 

As we go downwards in the earth's crust there is a distinct 
increase of temperature below the variable zone affected by 
the climatic and seasonal conditions. This increment is on 
an average about 1° F. for every 60 feet. But what is this 
average calculated upon? It is obtained by massing all the 
figures from various rock systems and dividing through. If now 
we take the older and younger rock systems we shall find that 
the former, nearer the earth's centro-'sphere, have a tempera- 



ture increment of only i° F. in every 200 feet, whereas the 
latter may have as rapid an increment as 1° F. in every 28'i 
feet (Anzin, near Valenciennes). In the British Isles we may 
obtain in this confined area alone differences ranging from an 
mcrement of 1° F. for every 34 feet to i ° F. for everv 130 

To explain the earth's temperature we have no reason to 
postulate an internal molten sphere of rock, in fact, were there 
any heat at all in the centre of the earth, life on the surface 
would be impossible from the enormous additional heat re- 
ceived by the crust by radiation. The source of this earth 
temperature lies firstly in the chemical chanyes which go on 
in the rocks themselves and secondly in the fact that all sili- 
ceous rocks contain radium, and lastly in the movements in the 
earth's crust, which produce frictional heat. 

To take the first case first. The earth's crust is a veritable 
chemical laboratory, in which reactions are always going on. 
The simplest process is the oxidisation of pyritic carbonaceous 
shale rock, such as we find abundantly in the Lias of Europe 
and above the Dwyka Conglomerate in South Africa. When 
water containing" oxygen gains access to this rock through 
cracks, there is immediately a reaction which sets up so much 
heat that not infrequently steam and sulphurous vapours are 
given off and escape at the surface as in solfataras near 
volcanoes. In the Kimberley Mines, which pierce the carbon- 
aceous shale of the Dwyka series near the surface, this action 
has happened in many instances, and the reef has burnt for 
years. It must be remembered, however, that the reaction 
is reversible. An oxidised sediment deeply buried may be- 
come pyritised and hence heat will be absorbed and locked 
up so that pyritic shales will show abnormally high tempera- 
ture increnients near the surface and abnormally low ones 
below the range of surface waters. 

The following figures are given by Sir A. Geikie for the 
Rose Bridge Colliery Shaft at Wigan, and will show at a glance 
how dependent on the rock encountered is the temperature in- 

Depth in 

Increment in 

Increase in 

Temperature 1 




feet for i°F. 








80 1 





83 1 




















88 -q 























; I 















In one place, therefore, the rate of increase may vary from 
1° F. for every 24 feet to 1° F. for every 116 feet. 

In the deeper-seated portions of the earth's crust, where the 
pressure is so enormous that sohds become potential liquids 
and tiie molecules of which they consist have the mobility of 
those of liquids, silicic acid or silica becomes active. The heat 
of combination is equal to that of nitric acid, and wherever 
this silicic acid comes in contact with a carbonate it replaces the 
carbonic acid, forming tirst the various lime silicates, wollas- 
tonite, garnet, epidote and so forth, but later, if the process 
is continued, sending the bases out in solution and entirely re- 
placing the original compound. The heat-equivalent of all 
these reactions can be worked out, and in the near future it 
will be possible, if the history of a piece of metamorphic rock 
is known, to say that it has given out or absorbed so many 

The important fact to observe is that chemical reactions may 
add to or subtract from the heat of the earth's crust. Gener- 
ally it may be stated that at great depths the reactions cause 
diminution of temperature, whereas nearer the surface they 
are of such a nature that they cause rise of temperature. Every 
reaction has its own heat equivalent, but it may be safely 
stated that the majority of heat producing reactions stop at 
five miles depth in the earth's crust, and that the nearer the 
surface the greater the number of such reactions. From 
which It follows that rocks once deeply buried, but now un- 
covered, are rocks such as have been formed under conditions 
of heat absorption, and we arrive at the apparent paradox 
that the fundamental granite and gneiss was melted under 
conditions of great cold. It is impossible in a paper of this 
nature to go over all the reasons which make such a fact ex- 
tremely probable ; suffice it here to call to mind that the liquid 
condition of a substance means that the mass offers no resist- 
ance to distortion ; hence under enormous pressures it is cjuite 
possible to liquify a solid, stich as granite, in much the same 
way as one can cause lead to flow under pressure*, and in 
that case, the molecules having the mobility of that of a liquid, 
v.iii cause the granite to have all the features of a rock crystal- 
lised from igneous fusion. From field evidence of the contact 
of granite and slate, for instance, it is abundantly clear that 
the rock cannot have been at the temperature necessarv to 
cause it to melt under atmospheric pressure ; in the classical 
examples at Huelgoat in the department of Finisterre, in 
Brittany, the Silurian slates on the west of the granite are 
entirely unaltered, though on the east side they have suffered 
extreme metamorphism, proving that it is not the heat of 
the granite that has to do with the metamorphism, but rather 
the pressure which happened to be concentrated on only one 
side of the granite. 

* The parallel of granite and lead under pressure is not strictly a true one 
since the granite becomes molten through the solvent action of water, which, 
under high pressures, dissolves silicates. 


Turning now to the heating effect of radium, we have the 
work of Joly in the Simplon and St. Gothard rocks to guide us. 

In the St. Gothard tunnel, Stapff observed in the central 
portions temperatures which worked out at a gradient of 46-6 
metres for i°C., with small irregularities, which he attributed 
to cold springs and the decomposition of the rock. At the 
north end, where the tunnel pierces the granite of the Fin- 
steraarhorn massif, there is a rise of temperature sufficient to 
make the gradient 20*9 metres for every 1° C. Stapff ex- 
plained the last rapid increase by imagining that the granite 
retained some of the original heat of its molten condition, but 
Prestwich, on the other hand, preferred to look upon it as the 
result of mechanical actions which had comparatively recently 
been in progress, and to which the upheaval of the Alps was 
due. In the more recently bored Simplon tunnel, Stapff. bas- 
ing his estimates on the experience obtained in the St. Gothard, 
predicted a maximum temperature of 47° C., wdiile others pre- 
dicted much lower ones. The actual temperatures observed, 
however, rose to the north end to 55° C., and caused immense 
difficulties in ventilation and working. This unexpected high 
temperature was believed by Fox to be due to proximity to 
volcanic rocks, but nothing of the sort has been noticed on 
the surface. This fact nevertheless shows how impossible it is 
to estimate increase of temperature in the earth's crust; in the 
Simplon case the excess of heat almost stopped the working, 
whereas the deep levels of the Witwatersrand, which should 
be almost unbearably hot if the established temperature gradi- 
ents existed in Nature, are comparatively cool. 

Joly investigated the Simplon and St. Gothard rocks with 
a view to ascertaining their radium contents, and found that 
the amount of radium contained in the various types encoun- 
tered corresponded in a remarkable way with the temperature 
gradients, so that in the high gradient region of the St. Gothard 
the amount was 14-1 billionths of a gramme per gramme of 
rock, whereas in the low gradient region it fell to 3-3 billionths. 
In regard to the temperatures of the two tunnels, the following- 
tables show the same correspondence : — 

Simplon Tunnel, amount of radium per gramme of rock substance in billionths 
of a gramme : 

Jurassic and Triassic altered sediments 

Crystalline schists, partly Jurassic and Triassic and partly 

Monte Leone gneiss and primitive gneiss . . 

Schistose gneiss 

Antigorio gneiss 

j\Iean for all rocks 


Archaean 7-3 
.. 6-3 
.. 6-5 

St. Gothard Tunnel, amount of radium per gramme of rock substance in 
billionths of a gramme : 

Granite of Finsteraarhorn . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 '7 



St. Gothard massif 

Tessin mulde 

Mean in Central* Section 



From Joly's figures there can be no doubt left in one's mind 
that radium has at any rate a very great influence on the tem- 
peratures observed in rocks, if it is not entirely responsible for 
all the heat in the earth's crust. But the work of Strutt, who 
initiated this line of research, is still more positive. The fol- 
lowing table is taken from his work on the distribution of 
radium in the earth's crust and on the earth's internal heat: — 

Rock. j Locality. Radium in billionths of a gramme 

per gramme of rock substance. 

Granite . . . . Rhodesia . . . . 9'56 

Granite . . . . Cape of Good Hope . . 7-15 

Granite . . . . Shap Fell . . . . * 6-65 

Granite . . . . Isle of Rum . . 676 

Olivine basalt .. Skye .. .. i'32 

Basalt . . . . Victoria Falls . . i -26 

Basalt .. .. Ovifak, Greenland .. •613 

Dolerite .. .. Isle of Canna .. i"24 

Dunite . . . . Loch Scaivig . . "664 

Stony Meteorite .. Dhurmsala .. .. i-i2 

Iron meteorite . . Three specimens . . o 

Native iron . . Disco, Greenland . . -424 

The general result of the analysis of the 33 specimens tested 
is that the radium content is higher in siliceous than in basic 
rocks and that meteoric iron is free of radium. Assuming 
that the rate of increase observed in the crust of the earth is 
1° F. for every 42*4 feet, according" to Prestwich's mean, then 
if all the heat were solely produced by radium contained in 
the earth, the amount would be -175 billionths of a gramme per 
gramme of earth substance, taking it all through. All igneous 
rocks, however, contain far more than this; the poorest of all, 
tne 'Greenland basalt, contains 10 times as much and an aver- 
age rock 50 to 60 times as much. 

If then the earth cannot contain on an average more than 
•175 billionths of a gramme per gramme of earth substance and 
that 5 billionths is a representative value for rocks in the crust 
of the earth, then not more than 1/30 of the earth's volume 
■can consist of material similar to that encountered on the sur- 
face. This would give a depth of rock crust of about 45 miles, 
assuming a total absence of radio-active material within. 

Suppose, further, that all the heat in the earth's crust is 
produced by radium, then the temperature at the base of the 
45 miles will be 1530° C. Radium has been tested up to a 
temperature of I200°C., at which point no diminution of its 
properties was observed, so that there is no reason to suppose 
that the temperature at the base of the rocky crust would in- 
terfere with the emanation of heat. Remembering, however, 
that the fundamental rock of the earth's crust is granite, the 
radium content 5 is probably far too low; considering" also the 
■contributory effects of the chemical reactions, the depth of the 
radium-containing crust can be halved or at any rate reduced 
to Milne's estimate of 30 miles. There is a further considera- 
tion not contemplated by vStrutt, namely; the probability that 


the radium is concentrated near the surface of the earth and 
the heating' effects therefore would be confined to a zone near 
the surface. 

These researches then lead us to the conclusion that the 
earth consists of a self-heating crust resting upon a solid 
nucleus. Is there any reason to believe that this central 
nucleus is hot or cold ? Until very good evidence is adduced 
to the contrary the earth centrosphere must be regarded as 
having the temperature of outer space, that 15 — 273° C, plus 
any heat that may have radiated out into it from the surface 
layer. For consider how this earth's centre has been formed. 
Meteorites large and small have come together and have been 
consolidated by mutual gravitation; heat by impact of new 
meteorites has been generated and the whole has swung round 
for immeasurable time in an extremely cold medium. When 
the earth was small, or even as large as the moon, the radia- 
tion of heat into space would have been rapid enough to cool 
down the whole to the temperature of outer space. Only 
later, when water became abundant on the surface and the 
outer rocks became disintegrated, changed by chemical pro- 
cesses, enriched by the concentration of radio-active substances 
through solution and deposition and distorted by earth folds 
and quakes, could the internal generation of heat keep pace 
with the radiation of heat into space and the crust of the earth 
could thus become habitable. If we accept Prof. Chamberlin's 
planetismal hypothesis, then it seems inevitable that we must 
regard the earth's centre as a cold body like that of the moon. 
In a small body, a cold nucleus surrounded by a hot surface 
would gradually assume the temperature of the surface, but 
in a vast body like the earth the penetration of the heat into 
the interior is stopped by absorption in chemical and physical 
changes near the base of the crust, and at most the tempera- 
ture cannot be in excess of that existing in the surface laver i.e., 

1530° C. . ' . 

The production of molten lava m volcanoes is to be attri- 
buted to local causes in the outer 10 or 12 miles of the crust; 
where movement and consequent frictional heat is being de- 
veloped ; as this heat is brought in lava streams and hot 
springs to the surface and there dissipated into space, the melt- 
ing of the rock under these circumstances does not add to ihe 
general body heat of the earth. Or to look at the question 
ill another way: since the heating effects in the earth's crust 
in the end can be traced to the agency of water, so we can 
state roughly that the limit of warmth in the earth is deter- 
mined by the percolation of water; as granite has been formed 
with the help of water we can define this limit of heat at that 
depth to which the earth's substance has the elasticity of 
normal rocky substances, namely: 30 miles. 

In other words, the temperature increment in the earth's 
crust will increase as we go downwards till a limit is reached, 
and beyond that, there will be a decrease. Is there good 
evidence for this theoretical deduction in actual fact ? South 
Africa is peculiarly well situated to answer this question. From 


the recent work of Jean's, it is found that the earth is pear- 
shaped with the stalk end in Africa and the bhnit end in the 
Pacific. The reason for this shape is that nowdiere else in 
the globe are the sedimentary rocks of post-Archaean age so 
thinly developed: for immense periods the Continent of Africa 
has been practically uncovered by the sea. and as a conse- 
quence, wdiere the rest of the crust has been burdened by 
thicknesses of strata representing billions of tons. Africa has 
stood free, Hence, whereas the rest of the globe has_ been 
depressed, Africa has been bulged out beyond the limits of 
the sphere. 

In piercing the rocks in Africa we therefore penetrate deeper 
into the earth's interior than in any other part of the globe, 
and we find that the temperature increment, instead of being 
anything like the average of i° F. for every 60 feet, is 1° F. 
for every 225 feet on the Rand. 

There' are of course other areas of low temperature incre- 
ment in the globe, such as the granite area of ^^linas Geraes 
in Brazil, also a region of granite and gneiss thinly covered 
with sediments, but nowhere else than in Africa is such a vast 
area of low temperature increment to be reckoned on. If 
the height of the bulge of Africa above the spherical surface 
be taken at five miles this would mean that in five miles the 
temperature increment has fallen from 1° F. for every 60 ft. 
to 1° F. in 225 feet. 

It is, 'however, impossible to reduce the observations to 
scale in this way; a contemplation of the rates of increase at 
various places given in any of the lists makes it quite obvious 
that no prediction of temperature increase at one place can be 
made from observations at another, as we have seen was done 
with unfortunate consequences in the case of the Simplon 
tunnel; in the British Isles alone the temperature increment 
vary from 1° F. for every 34 feet to 1° F. for every 130 feet; 
but, taking all the variations into account, there is sufficient 
evidence from the observations to bear out the contention that 
the nearer the interior of the globe the less is the temperature 
increase for equal distances. This has been long recognised 
and reg'arded as an insoluble enigma, but in the light of modern 
geological thought it is not only not an enigma but a neces- 
sary consequence. 

The belief in a hot interior of the globe has so possessed 
the minds of people, that when deep level mining is proposed, 
the public still cling to the belief that it must be impossible 
because their geological text books say that at such depths 
the temperature would be prohibitive to working. I venture 
to trust, therefore, that a more widespread knowledge of 
Chamberlin's planetismal hypothesis and the developments 
that have appeared since its publication are not only of 
academic interest, but have an important bearing on the 
economic w^elfare of this country. I have. I am afraid, out- 
lined a number of contentious arguments, but the intention 
of this paper is more to call attention to the trend of modern 
investigation in Geology than to prove each step, and I have 
elsewhere dealt with the whole subject in cxtcuso. 


(Plates 7 and 8.) 

By Rev. Father Norton, S.S.M. 

The centenarian Mokoena that I have described in another 
paper* said that when she was a child (pointing to a child of about 
eight) the Bushmen were everywhere. This must have been 
about the year 1814, when the famous old medicine man, her 
cousin Mohlomi, died. She did not mention them, however, 
in her list of the neighbouring tribes, either because they are small 
or because they lived in small groups apart in the caves. The 
devourers of Moshesh's cattle in the paper referred to were called 
the Makhomokhomo but there is a version which makes them 
Griqua. The title means " great at cattle," for so they evidently 
were, whatever race they really belonged to. The centenarian says 
that after the Lifaqane or invasions of the Zulu tribes (1822) the 
Bushmen (they had come from Matatiele, but approached Modder- 
poort from the north, i.e., from Mequatleng) taught the broken 
and scattered Basuto tribes to trap game in pits. There is in 
■our caves a very vivid picture of the unsuspecting bok approach- 
ing the large oblong trap, covered with brush wood, and human 
beings near. In this way they gained consideration for a time, 
or regained, for there is a story that the Bushmen taught the 
Basuto the way to circumcise and took precedence in the Lodge. 

The Bushmen, then, who painted our Modderpoort caves had 
their home at Mequatleng, whence come some of my exhibits, 
kindly lent by Miss Woldmann. They came to the Modderpoort 
valley, the country of their allies, the Bataung of Ramokhele, 
which abounded in game, including the lion, the totem of that 
tribe. The king of beasts had a splendid hunting ground in the 
reeds between Hoogfontein, which travellers by Modderpoort 
pass, and Welgevonden, some four miles off. There were elands 
and all manner of game, and in the Poort itself (the " Pass of 
Lions," as it is called in Sesuto) thick bush, a splendid lair. 
But the Bushmen disputed the sport with the lions, and being 
too small a folk to carry off the huge spoil of their little poisoned 
arrows, they sat down in the caves till they had consumed it, 
painting the chase on the walls and scraping the skins with the 
tiny scrapers which one may still pick up any day. I made a 
casual collection of the flints of the cave floors and sent them 
to Cape Town the other day. To my surprise I was told they were 
true flint implements, and my inexperience in this department 
was encouraged. They were cleared out of Mequatleng by the 
farmers, presumably after the conquest in 1868, for they were 
as " great " at horses as at cattle, and relished them even more. 
Nevertheless I met a tiny man about four feet high tramping 
along the road the other day by Mequatleng. The unfortunate 
remnants of the race were cleared out of the Maluti also some- 
where about the same time. Alas for the only relic of Stone- 

See pp. 114-117, ante. 


Age man in South Africa. The Bantu have, of course, been iron- 
workers from time immemorial ; indeed some say their cousin 
the negro was the first. 

The Bushmen paintings need to be seen, to make one reahse 
the extraordinary vigour and advance of this pigmy race. To- 
say that they drew as children do is to slander them. Contrast 
those heads drawn by Leicestershire peasant boys, if I remember 
right, with the extraordinary vigour of these Bushman copies. 
But what does our picture* represent ? At first I thought, a 
raid on the cattle of another village, but our little herdboys tell 
me that they are not cattle but wild animals, probably elands 
again, the bushman's best favoured game. I stand corrected, 
and we must take it as a hunt, though I am still puzzled by the 
familiar relations of the small figures at the bottom with their' 
prey. The beast at the side or end they say is a lion, and on 
mature consideration I think they are right (witness the tail). 
This would account for the special excitement of the figures tO' 
its right which I have not had room to put in ; and the verdict on 
the whole picture will be the piquant one that it represents the 
Bushman poachers of the lion's preserves interrupted by his 
majesty himself ! The weapons — large shields, broad assegais 
and their quivers seems to shew that it is not Bushmen but Kafirs 
(from their shields, of Zulu sort) who are presented. The frail 
and often solitary Bushman seems to have been quieter in approach 
to the game, than the racing five and thirty figures of the picture 

Another hunting scene represents, on a long frieze-like strip of 
smooth rock, a number of blackmen (apparently Bantu again) sur- 
rounding some large bok, which are browsing, it seems, on the leaves 
of a tree. Beside the tall blackman, one of whom is shooting with 
a bow, and is therefore probably one of the Bataung, the allies 
of the Bushmen in possession of Modderpoort, there are two small 
red figures, probably Bushmen, one of which is pointing to the 
game. The picture seems to represent the stage at which the 
black folk were glad to avail themselves of the Bushman's hunt- 
ing skill. Just above are two red lions, one magnificently drawn, 
in another place a black monkey, very lifelike. 

Here is another picture,! the best of the collection for colour, 
crimson, orange, yellow and white. In the centre are two elands 
fighting; in the background (there is an idea of perspective)^ 
human figures with curious white taches, very hard to explain. 

There are other groups representing the incoming Bantu, and 
these are to my mind the chief interest of our caves. The pictures 
are thus proved to be comparatively recent ; from the uniform 
of white caps, ostrich feathers, &c., which appear, they would 
seem to be subsequent to the organisation of the Zulu army by 
Dingiswayo, &c., after the middle of the i8th century. Zulu 
tribes, e.g. the Amahlubi, came to get ostrich feathers, probably 
before the great incursions of 1822. The ligures have long keries, 

* Plate 7. t Plate 8. 


anklets and wristlets and black shields (or karosses). A little 
Bushman seems to be attacking one group, and another to be fallen. 
Another group has a dog, which friend of man was said not to 
have been known to Zulu tribes before 1827. Hence this group 
is probably Basuto, especially as one appears to have trousers, 
which may have been got from the Koranas. though these did not 
com.e to live near till the thirties. The figures are often beauti- 
fully formed, with well rounded muscles, except the heads, which 
are a mere bob of paint for the Bushmen, though they are careful 
to shew the prognathous jaw of the Kafir. Sometimes also they 
remark his lanky legs and protruding heel, as in a ridiculous picture 
of one doubling up before the butt of an eland at bay, but some 
of the figures are beautifully drawn, one resembling the attitude 
of Satan in Dore's Miltonic scene of his court in Pandemonium. 
There are some pictures of dancers with animal heads. Some 
of the figures seem to be dancing on their knees as Basuto girls 
sometimes do. In conclusion there is a scene of two eland, bull 
and cow, with two figures behind the latter (perhaps by another 
hand), and two in ambush in the reeds, while a woman stands 
in the foreground, of whom the beasts apparently take no notice, 
knowing she is not armed (so a native explained to me). The 
reeds are deftly put in with a dark wash ; nothing so crude as 
the substantial sticks, by which an English beginner would have 
represented them — and a most vigorous group of a Kafir leaping 
with his assegai upon a large spotted beast, leopard or what not. 

In another part of the mountain where pictures are not seen, 
a carving on stone was found, and under the pictures I once 
found a digging stick, which I regret to say I gave away because 
at the time its authenticity was derided. 

I have just learnt two points more from one of the Bataung 
who intermarried with them. The poison of their arrows was 
not merely poisonous to the wound but also in the mouth. 
Whereas snake's poison may be innocuous to drink, a Queen 
Eleanor who should suck the wound of a Bushman's victim would 
have to fill her mouth first with the secret antidote. The other 
point is that I am assured that a Kafir, at any rate, marrying a 
Bushman woman, as many did, was supposed to hold her tight 
while her family rained blows upon his head (fairly thick, but 
not so much so as a Bushman's, said my informant). This is 
evidently a relic of marriage by capture, but my informant's 
relative offered three cattle instead, which the Bushmen accepted 
instead of beating him till they were tired. The Bushmen were 
not, of course, pastoral, so that this is a fairly up-to-date example 
of the great transition from capture-marriage to marriage-cattle 
through which most of our ancestors have passed. 



By W. T. Saxton, AI.A. 

(Not printed.) . 



(Evening Discourse delivered in the Tozvn Hall, Bloemfontcin, 
on Thursday, Sept. 30, 1909: Illustrated by 44 lantern 

Your Excellency, ladies and gentlemen : 

Before proceeding with my lecture to-night I hope you will 
pardon me if I say just one word about the Association under 
whose auspices we meet. Its aims are well stated by its official 
designation, the South African Association for the Advance- 
ment of Science, and I need hardly remind you that it is 
modelled on its more famous prototype, the British Associa- 
tion, which is holding its annual meeting at Winnipeg this 
year. Long before the cjuestion of a political union of the 
various South African States had assumed a coherent form, 
the members of our Association had recognised that science 
knew no geographical or racial boundaries, and that its ad- 
vancement was rather retarded than otherwise by their exist- 
ence. In turn, all the British South African Colonies, except- 
ing" the Orange Free State, have been visited, and I would like 
to say on behalf of my visiting colleagues how pleased we are 
to be here at last, and how much we appreciate the hospitality 
which has been so lavishly showered upon us. I hardly hope 
that our visit will altogether compensate you for the loss of the 
Capital, but under the new era which will soon be officially 
inaugurated we trust that this historic town and your virile 
community will receive a measure of prosperity, commensurate 
with the great sacrifices which have been made. 

What South Africa wants to-day is rest — political and in- 
dustrial — such rest as will enable us to tackle those multifarious 
scientific problems upon which the prosperity of the whole 
country so much depends — in the true spirit of enquiry — un- 
hampered by considerations of expediency, and onlv considered 
from the point of view of the good of the whole. 

I owe you an apology for the choice of a subject with which 
most of you must be entirely unfamiliar, but my excuse is 
that the subject of explosives is the one that I know best. But 
even after 20 years' acquaintance I know just sufficient to 
realise that I know so very little after all. To-night I propose 
only to tell you what I think I know. After all, however, ex- 
plosives have a good deal to do with the material prosperity 
of your State. Without them you will have no mining industry 
at all, and very possibly you would still have been without an 
efficient railway service. If then they are essential to you — 
for remember all your coal is won by their means — how much 
more so must they be to the Witwatersrand, where every month 
some 1,600 tons are consumed in the mining' for gold, 


diamonds, coal and base metals. Let me illustrate this by a 
few official figures. 

Witwatersrand Statistics for year ending June, 1908. 

Explosives consumed : — 560,000 cases = 14,000 tons. 

Value : ;^i, 500,000. 

]\Ietals and minerals handled and won : — 

Silver . . . . 740,000 oz. Value ;£'88,297. 

Base metals . . 7,661 tons. ",, ;^i66,452. 

Coal .. .. 2,892,214 tons. ,, ^^778, 659. 

Diamonds .. .. 2,184,490 carats. ., ;£i.879,55i. 

Gold .. .. 6,711,436 oz. ,, ;^28,5o8,368. 

Total mineral output : — ;^3 1,634,000. 

Note. — During the year ending June, 1909, the above figures show an 
overall of about 10 per cent. 

But even on its lowest basis the explosives industry is one 
of the most important in South Africa. Over £2,000,000 are 
invested in the three factories now working; every year these 
three factories pay out almost £200,000 in wages, and spend 
an additional £100,000 locally on the purchase of stores. Then 
directly they contribute to the various administrations about 
£250,000 in railway rates, and give direct employment to 2,000 

If I had been lecturing" on the subject of explosives just a 
few years ago my task would have been comparatively easy. 
The only explosive in general use until about 30 years ago wa 
black powder, than which perhaps no other material has played 
a greater part in the economy of the world. This is a tall 
statement, but if you consider only the warlike aspect of the 
question you will see that I must be correct. We are pretty 
certain that it was known 800 years ago, but experts are still 
undecided as to which of the two ancient civilizations, viz., 
those of China or Arabia, should be credited with the discovery. 
That point need not trouble us. Five hundred years ago its 
use was pretty general in warfare. 

It is sad to part with old friends. The days of black powder 
are doomed, notwithstanding the fact that some old-fashioned 
sportsmen still swear by it, but the same class of sportsman 
swears also by the muzzle loader. For some classes of work, 
however, such as quarrying, it will be difficult to beat. 

At this stage I might say that black powder is wdiat chemists 
call a mechanical mixture, i.e., an ag"gregation of particles of 
different bodies adjacent to one another, but having no interest 
whatever in one another, until chemical reaction is started. 

Time does not permit of my dwelling longer on the past, so 
I propose now to pass on to some of the more modern develop- 
ments, which have not only revolutionised industry, but also 
warfare, as we in this country know only too well. Two names 
are most intimately associated with these developments, and 
tney are so much alike that they are frequently confused. Thev 
are Alfred Nobel and Sir Andrew Noble. 

Explosives, as I have already indicated, is a very wide sub- 
ject. Under its category are included squibs, torpedoes. 


rockets, compressed gases, shells, military and sporting car- 
tridges of all kinds, caps, fuses, and blasting compounds — the 
latter infinite in variety. I propose to limit myself to those 
which are of purely South African interest, but even this is a 
very wide field. The base of all is nitro-glycerine, or gun- 
cotton, or both. 

Nitro-giycerine was discovered in 1846 by an Italian chemist 
called Sobrero, and although he recognised its explosive pro- 
perties, he was not able to apply his knowledge. For many 
years its only application was medicinal, and it still figures in 
the British Pharmacopia. To Alfred Nobel, than whom no 
more daring experimenter ever breathed, belongs the merit of 
developing its latent potentialities. I remember vividly his 
relation of some of his early experiments. It may seem a 
small thing to say that he distilled over hundredweights of 
nitro-glycerine under reduced pressure, but this he actually did. 
and only those who know what a ticklish body nitro-glycerine 
is can realise the daring of the experiment. It had apparently 
a great future. Factories for its manufacture were established 
everywhere. True, the quantities made at a time were not 
large — a few lbs. being generally the limit. Nowadays in 
America they make two tons in one operation. Here in South 
Africa we are content with one ton. I might explain that in 
these early days nitro-glycerine was handled in much the same 
manner as paraffin oil is to-day. To make the comparison com- 
plete, it was generally transported in paraffin tins, and the 
precautions observed were not so g'reat as those which obtained 
for the carriage of eggs. Railway contractors, however, 
generally made it as they went on with their work — certain men 
skilled in the art, but mostly unskilled — following up the con- 
tractors and supplying them with what they wanted. But a 
rude awakening was at hand. Accidents of the most appalling' 
nature were reported from all corners of the civilised world. 
Of these England had her share, and the Government of the 
time became so alarmed by these occurrences that they ap- 
pointed in 1874 a Select Committee to investigate and report. 
That committee recommended the absolute prohibition of 
manufacture, and much the same course was followed by other 
countries. Any ordinary man would have been deterred from 
going further — but not , Nobel, who had set his heart on the 
taming of the shrew. This he succeeded in doing after many 
failures, and his dynamite of 1867 is the selfsame dynamite 
which made mining at depth possible in Kimberley and else- 
where. Dynamite is nothing more nor less than nitro-glycerine 
absorbed by a body called Kieselguhr — Fuller's earth— whicli 
is composed of the skeletons of tiny animalculje. These ha\e 
a remarkable absorptive capacity, and as a matter of fact soak 
up three times their own weight of nitro-glycerine — which is 

For the moment I leave nitro-glycerine and pass on to the 
other base, guncotton — which is really a generic term for a 
wdiole series of bodies. Physically all look exactly the same^,^-jrr]S~"*"-^ 
but in their chemical properties they are as far apart as >tfeO^H*v^/ 

L I S R A R *t 




poles. One variety is the " collodion " of photographic plates; 
another is the disruptive charge of torpedoes : from one arti- 
ficial silk is made, and a similar one forms the base of nearly 
all smokeless powders; one is the base of celluloid, out of which 
most artistic articles are now made — even billiard balls — and 
another is one of the two ingredients of blasting gelatine, of 
which more is manufactured in South Africa than in any other 
continent. Guncotton was discovered only one year before 
nitro-glycerine, in 1846, by an Austrian chemist called Schon- 
heim, and an Austrian military officer, called Von Link, dis- 
played the greatest ingenuity in adapting it for firearms and 
military purposes generally. He wove it into cloth, wound it 
on reels for rifle charges, compressed it into slabs for cannon ; 
tut all was of no avail, guncotton would not be tamed, and 
after a series of most disastrous calamities, both in Austria and 
in England, guncotton shared the same fate as nitro-glycerine; 
It was apparently consigned to oblivion. 

I pass over all the pioneer work of Sir Frederic^ Abel, of 
the British War Office, of Alfred Nobel, and merely say that 
in due course these two remarkable bodies were tamed and 
made amenable to ordinary manufacturing processes. Nowa- 
days it is very seldom that an accident takes place during the 
preliminary processes of manufacture of either. 

The chemical reactions involved in preparing these two 
bodies are very similar. They are as follows : — 
Chemical reactions involved in the making of Gun Cotton and Nitro-Glycerine. 

C,H,„0, + 3 HNO3 = CH; (NO,)3 + 3H,0. 

Cellulose + Nitric Acid = Gun Cotton + Water. 

C3H, (OH)3 + 3 HNO, = C3H, (ONO,)3 + 3 H,0. 
Glycerine + Nitric Acid = Nitro Glycerine + Water. 

Composition of permanent gases produred on explosion. 


un Cotton. 


Carbonic Acid 



Carbon Monoxide 




20 -20% 


Nitrogen . . , 



Marsh Gas 


1 8 -4% 


— ■ 





But I must abruptly leave these two most interesting bodies 
to follow up another phase of explosives activity. Modern 
explosives would be absolutely useless without caps, or detona- 
tors. In general terms you all know what I mean by these. 
The ordinary military and sporting cartridge is exploded by a 
cap, which is in turn exploded by a striker or hammer. Shells, 
shrapnel, and common and torpedo charges are exploded by 
a more elaborate development of the same device; explosives 
used for blasting purposes get their initial shock from a 


detonator, but the underlying principle in each case is precisely 
the same, and until a very few years ago only one body — 
fulminate of mercury — was known to perform this very neces- 
sary function. The first caps were made by an English gun- 
maker in the year of the battle of Waterloo, but the idea lay 
dormant until Nobel's intuitive mind saw their potentialities. 
He adapted gun caps to blasting compounds, and concurrently 
came along the development of ordinary time fuse. 

And now, ladies and gentlemen, I have very briefly reviewed 
what might be called our raw materials, and equally briefly I 
propose to review the processes through which these materials 
pass, on the way towards being turned out efficient engines 
of destruction. Time does not permit of my considering more 
than three, viz. : — 

Blasting Gelatine, 

Safety Explosives, 

Each of these three is typical of a very large class, and all 
are used in this Colony. I have already said that more blasting 
gelatine is made in South Africa than in any other continent. 
It is the strongest blasting agent known, and its manufacture 
is exceedingly simple. Provided you have been able to follow 
me so far I need only devote a word to it. It consists of nitro- 
glycerine 93 per cent, and collodion cotton 7 per cent. You 
will observe that both the ingredients are strong explosives. 

I next pass on to the so-called safety explosives, of which 
there are scores. The name " safety " has been given because 
of their comparative safety in coal mines, i.e., mines in which 
there is the danger of explosions, either from accumulated gas 
or from coal dust. We in the Transvaal are so far quite free 
of these risks. We are free from gas on account of the geo- 
logical formation of the overlying rocks, and we are free from 
dust because of the very large workings, the seams not infre- 
quently being 12 to 20 feet thick, against 24 to 30 inches in 
England. In the northern part of your Colony, however, 
there are two coal mines, both of which are gaseous, con- 
sequently both safety lamps and safety explosives have to be 
used if danger is to be avoided. These safetv explosives have 
a comparatively low temperature of explosion, so that they do 
not readily ignite coal gas unless when used in tremendously 
large quantities. 

I now pass to cordite, which was the only propellant used in 
the latter stages of the recent war. The history of the develop- 
ment of smokeless powders is perhaps one of the most interest- 
ing in the whole range of applied chemistry. I have already 
referred to the early experiments of Von Link, which came to 
nought. The name of Alfred Nobel is connected with the 
next great advance. I have just described to you what blasting 
gelatine is, and " ballistite," brought to the world's notice by 
Nobel about 22 years ago, is much the same body with the 
proportions altered. Ballistite, as produced by Nobel, con- 
tained equal proportions of collodion cotton and nitro-glycerine, 
and it was immediately taken up by the Germans and other 


Continental Powers as their propellant for large guns, and it 
is their propellant to-day. The sporting- ballistite, which is 
fairly well known in this country, was first made about i6 years 
ago, and was a development of my own. 

What I have just said now is more or less introductory to 
cordite, which you have been blazing away at your Orange 
Free State Bislev, but at this stage I must retrace my steps a 

About 20 years ago the different European Governments 
were all vieing with one another as to who should have the 
best military propellant. France had not forgotten 1870, and 
Austria's recollections of her misadventure were still green. 
The chemists of the British War Office were meantime quietly 
working away on the lines indicated by Nobel a few years 
earlier, and gradually they evoWed cordite, which is perhaps 
the best allround military propellant. 

Now, all smokeless powders are affected by climatic con- 
ditions, and no other Power has such a variety of those as 
Great Britain. Cordite has successfully withstood the swelter- 
ing heat of India and the arctic cold of Canada, the humidity 
of West Africa, and the aridity of Aden. This may seem a 
small thing, but it is not. We have only to think of wdiat was 
happening regularly in the French Navy recently to realise 
what an important thing it is. The " Jena " disaster in the 
harbour of Toulon is only one of many similar occurrences, 
and I have no doubt whatever that the blowing" up of the 
American warship, the " Maine," in Havana Harbour — an 
occurrence which brought on the Spanish-American war — was 
not the work of the Spaniards, but the result of a defective 
smokeless powder. 

So much for the manufacture of explosives. I now- come 
to the use, but I must assume that you are all acquainted with 
this in a general way, therefore I shall, as hi the case of the 
manufacture, refer only to a few typical cases. Explosives, of 
course, have only a value proportionate to their potential 
power. For instance, one litre of nitro-glycerine produces 
1,141 litres of gas on detonation, reckoned at zero and ordinary 
barometric pressure; but as the theoretical temperature 
of explosion is 6,980° C, and as the mechanical effect 
is a function of the gas volume by the temperature, one can 
easily calculate what an enormous force is developed at the 
moment of explosion. The pressure which would be exerted 
under these conditions is equal to 1,300 tons, not lbs., per 
square inch. Taking equal bulks of nitro-giycerine and black 
powder, the former produces 10 to 12 times as much gas as 
the latter. And yet every particular application must have its 
own particular explosive. Black powder could have no effect 
on the rocks of the Witwatersrand, and blasting" gelatine would 
be worse than useless for quarrying sandstone. Cordite is of 
no use in a' shot-gun, and Schulze powder would blow the breach 
off of a -303 rifle to pieces. Lyddite, which is merely molten 
picric acid, must have a special primer before its potential 
power is iilierated, and wet guncotton — the explosive for tor- 


pedoes and submarines — would be quite useless in shrapnel 
shells. These examples give one a slight idea of the all-em- 
bracing nature of this branch of our subject, but from the 
apparent chaos a few underlying principles may be evolved. 
For instance, practically all blasting explosives are exploded 
by detonators, which give the initial shock. All sporting and 
military small-arm cartridges are exploded by caps — the idea 
benig to make the initial shock less violent. The same applies 
in a modified form to cartridges for large guns, and then, last 
of all, we have that wonderful development of the explosive 
force of uninflammable mixture of gases — in the motor car — in- 
ternal combustion engines. All of these have meant, as you 
know, years of patient scientific research. 

The velocity of projectiles can now be determined with the 
nicest exactitude by a whole host of methods. Not only so, 
but, thanks to the modern developments of photography, the 
bullet of the shell, or even the pellet, can be photographed on 
its path, and the very air pressure waves registered. Some of 
you may remember the old rough and ready methods of test- 
ing the penetration of shot-gun pellets. You took up your 
stand about 40 yards away from a parafiin tin and fired, exam- 
ining the effect; or else you got pads of brown paper, and 
noticed to what depth the pellets penetrated. All that has now 
given place to scientific determination of velocity, and the 
underlying" principles are really very simple. Velocities are 
now measured by an instrument called the chronograph. 

It is occasionally necessary to make a complete examination 
of the possibilities of an explosive under all conditions, as, for 
instance, the number of calories and gas volume which unit 
weights evolve. I have, however, not time to go into those 

In the early days of smokeless powder, as no doubt many 
of my audience will recollect, the erosion of guns was very bad. 
This was caused partly by the high velocities obtained, but 
mainly by the very high temperatures produced by the powders. 
Now this difficulty has been overcome, mainly by a new system 
of rifling, but with the Maxim and other quick-firing guns it 
was a long time before all the difficulties were overcome. In 
the initial trials the calorimeter was in constant use. 

Before I conclude this very cursory review, I should like to 
refer to some experimental work which has been done in the 
Transvaal — work which has been the result of years of patient 
observation and research. The results will have a profound 
influence on mining operations as carried on in the Witwaters- 
rand and other centres of mining activity where the conditions 
are similar, and they will, I trust, greatly improve the working 
conditions of those who labour in the bowels of the earth. 
Incidentally, I may mention that in a few years' time some of 
the Transvaal mines will just about reach sea level. One can 
readily realise therefore how difficult becomes the question of 
ventilation the lower one goes down. Within the past few 
years a great amount of attention has been directed to a solu- 
tion of this problem, and I am pleased to say that it has been 


attended with the happiest results. True, much still remains to 
be done, but the researches to which I have referred have indi- 
cated one line of improvement. Even to those who don't know 
much about mining or the use of explosives the mortality on 
the mines must always have appeared very great, and a large 
proportion of these always figured under the heading " gas- 
sing." Gassing is caused by the inhaling of either carbon 
monoxide or nitric peroxide, or both, but more frequently the 
former. Now theoretically neither of these ought even to be 
produced, but in practice, as was found out during the course 
of the experiments, the former is always formed, and that 
in dangerous quantities. The samples of gas for the examina- 
tion were obtained in rather an extraordinary manner. I pass 
over the difficulties which had to be overcome in 
arriving at a satisfactory method of determining with accuracy 
the small quantities of carbon monoxide which had to be taken 
account of, and will only state that an explosive has been dis- 
covered which produces very little indeed, and this apparently 
so safe that some miners have actually the hardihood to return 
to the face immediately after a large blast. This is not a prac- 
tice which I should recommend, but that it has been possible 
to do so is the strongest evidence of the importance of the 
discovery — and one which I am pleased to say has been made 
in a South African laboratory. The improvement which will 
be effected in the state of the underground atmosphere when 
this explosive comes into general use, together with the im- 
proved systems of ventilation, will cause a revolution in mining 
and a great improvement of the health of the miners. 

I am aware that this lecture is extremely elementary. Neither 
it nor the slides please me, but both have been prepared under 
the greatest pressure of work, and this must be my excuse. I 
can only hope that it has interested you in a subject which is 
not brought often before the public, and that you have now a 
somewhat better understanding of the vastness of the subject. 

A HALLEY COMMEMORATION The fact that Halley 

occupied the Savilian chair of astronomy at Oxford, says 
Nature, gives this University a special interest in Halley's 
comet. This interest the University proposes to mark by con- 
ferring the honorary degree of Doctor of Science on Mr. P. 
H. Cowell, F.R.S., chief assistant, and Mr. A. C. D. Crom- 
melin, assistant, at the Royal Observatory, Greenwich, by 
whose joint calculations the exact determination of the re- 
appearance of Halley's comet was successfully accomplished. 
The actual ceremony of conferring the degree will probably 
take place in May, at the time when the comet is expected to 
be at its brightest. It has further been arranged that the first 
discourse given on the new foundation of the Halley lecture 
shall be delivered by the founder himself, Dr. Henry Wilde, 
F.R.S., and it is hoped that this may take place at the same 
time as th-e conferring of degrees on the two Greenwich 


By Rev. Father Norton, S.S.M. 

The early g"eography of South Africa is a very interesting 
study, especially to the student of Bantu tribes and their origin. 
I had a golden opportunity of studying this on one of my rare 
holidays, when staying' at Keble with some friends who have 
an interesting" collection of the older South African travellers. 
I spread out these volumes in chronological order and opened 
out the numerous maps they contained. The earlier ones gave 
only the vaguest impressions of the country beyond the Storm- 
berg, but I was able to make a sketch map of this part of the 
country from latitudes 24 to 31. and from the Kalahari to the 
East Coast, from G. Thompson's map, published in February, 
1827, in order to illustrate his travels in 1821-4. By comparison 
with the later map of Steedman, published in 1835, I discovered 
the interesting fact that one could trace the advance of various 
tribes during the few years between the two travellers. It is 
true that some error in the observations had caused the natural 
features, coastline, mountains, etc., to be shifted some degrees 
from their real positions. The latitude seems to be fairly cor- 
rect, but it will be seen on the map that the position of Kuru- 
man and Griqua Town, both of which Thompson knew well, 
are marked some 40 miles (two-thirds of a degree at that 
latitude) towards the N. by E. The same is true of Koning 
and Phokoane and of Melita to the north, but in the case of 
Ramah and Philippolis, far to the south on the Orange River, 
the longitude also seems incorrect, but in opposite directions 
in the two cases. 

But this error does not nearly account for the considerable 
displacement of tribes on the second map compared with the 
first: e.g., the BaNgwaketse have moved one degree to the 
south (at that latitude about 70 miles) and the BaFurutsi (who 
revere their totem the monkey in their dances) about 80 miles 
to the S.W. By comparison again with the modern map, it 
will be seen that the North Bakwena and the BaNgwate and 
BaNgwaketse have since gone N.W., the two former as far as 
the tropics; the BaRolong west as well as south to Thaba Nchu; 
the BaKatla (who dance to the baboon) north, and some south 
to Basutoland — all scattered by Moselekatse and his Matabele. 

It will be noticed on Thompson's map that the country on 
either side of the Vaal about Potchefstroom district was one 
of the least known at his time. The mysterious but hospitable- 
sounding Binkletee is the only entry for that part. 

Steedman notes giraffe and white rhinos, west of the Lim- 
popo about Molepolule. They must have supplied game to the 
marauding Matabele. He also notes elephants near Ulundi. 
where Cetshwayo afterwards dwelt, while the banks of the 


IsiNyati or Buffalo River were infested with the beasts from 
which it takes its name. 

I was interested the other day on finding in the Maritzburg- 
Museum a copy of the Waldseemiiller maps of 1507 and 1516 
(the former the first, it is said, to mention America, though 
the name is omitted in the second), which note elephants on 
the East Coast by Zululand, and about the 30th parallel (i.e., 
in the Inkomanzi district of Natal), also " abundance of gold,"' 
but here perhaps Zululand and its gold mines is really again 

At the Cape they mark the coast points and rivers with names 
of all the royalties of Portugal, one would think, but nothing 
inland except naked savages with bows, probably Hottentots, 
since there is no sign that they are very small. Further to the 
north are the Mountains of the Moon, with various barbaric 
chiefs, throned, sceptred and crowned, and ultimately Prester 
John himself to the south of Egypt. 

The observant Steedman marks stone walls near Melita, and 
again near the Caledon. This in contrast to the Colony and 
some Bechoana tribes which made kraals of branches. The 
entry " Descendants of Europeans " in Thompson's map refers 
to the pathetic fate of the survivors of the " Grosvenor " c 
an earlier wreck about 1763. Steedman gives two accounts of 
the finding of these mulattos. 

half of 1909 a series of experiments was initiated at the Robert- 
son Experiment Station, with a view to determining the pro- 
portions of moisture lost to the soil by evaporation, and how 
much of that loss it would be possible to obviate by cultivation. 
The soil used in the experiments was the ordinary red soil of 
the district, a soil which often goes by the name of Karroo 
soil, although, strictly speaking, the appellation is not quite 
correct. The experiments were conducted in three pairs, one 
of each pair of soils being cultivated and the other left without 
cultivation. At the commencement of September the first pair 
of soils received a wetting corresponding to a rainfall of four 
inches, the second pair receiving a six-inch, and the third pair 
an eight-inch wetting. By the end of the month the nett loss 
by evaporation from the uncultivated soil of the first pair had 
amounted to -8 of an inch of rain, while the cultivated soil had 
lost only -2 of an inch, the saving by cultivation amounting to 
nearly 17,000 gallons per acre. In the second pair the loss 
was I'O inch in the case of the uncultivated and "4 of an inch 
in the cultivated soil, the conservation being practically equal 
in amount to that of the first pair. The loss of the uncultivated 
soil in the third pair was the equivalent of 2-5 inches of rain, 
while the cultivated soil lost about 1-9 inch, the difference 
between the two soils being similar to that in the other cases. 
The total nett loss of moisture from the uncultivated soil of 
the third pair amounted to over 68,000 gallons per acre. 



By Rev. Father Kelly, S.S.M. 

The object of this paper is to criticise the theory of the mechan- 
ical basis of Natural Science, and to criticise it from the point 
of view, not of philosophy, but of Natural Science itself. If, 
then, I am to speak in the name of Science, I need make no apology, 
— since I cannot claim to be a scientific specialist, — for the adoption 
of the method of extensive quotation from the writings of men 
who may be taken to represent the scientific standpoint. 

My paper will raise more questions than it attempts to solve ; 
and yet it may not be without some scientific value, since the 
systematic questioning of its hypotheses is an important element 
in scientific investigation. 

I. Statement of the Mechanical Theory. 

The mechanical theory of Natural Science may be stated in the 
following way : — It assumes that all the phenomena of the Universe, 
physical, chemical, and organic, can be reduced to the movements 
of material particles, and it assumes that these movements are 
conformed to the recognised laws of kinematics or dynamics. 
These particles, according to the older chemistry, would be con- 
ceived of as the atoms of the elements, but according to the newer 
chemistry as the corpuscles or electrons or ions of which the atoms 
are themselves composed 

The following quotations will throw further light on this theory, 
and will, at the same time, show its prevalence. 

Huxley, speaking of the origin of the Universe (a point with 
which we are not now concerned) says, 

" The more purely a mechanist the speculator is, the more firmly does 
he assume a primordial molecular arrangement of which (and here is 
the point with which we are concerned) all the phenomena of the Universe 
are the consequences."* 

Professor Hicks, in an address to the British Association (1895) 
says : — 

" Science will have reached its goal when it shall have reduced ultimate 
laws to one or two. . . . These ultimate laws — in the domain of physical 
science at least — will be the dynamical laws of the relations of matter 
to number, space, and time. The ultimata data themselves will be 
number, matter, time, and space themselves. When these relations shall 
be known, all physical phenomena will be a branch of pure mathematics. 
Before this can be attained we must have the working drawings 
of the details of the mechanism with which we have to deal. 
It is a slow and laborious process. The wreckage of rejected theories is 
appalling ; but a knowledge of what is actually going on behind what 
we can see or feel is surely if slowly being attained." (Quoted Ward 130.) 

We shall be better able to do justice to Professor Hick's meaning 
when we take into account certain other passages from the same 
address which will be given later on in another connection. 

* Darwin's " Life and Letters," voL ii, p. 201. 


Professor Ray Lankester, speaking for " all schools of thinkers 
who are acquainted with the facts," says, 

" The consensus is complete : Man is held to be a part of nature, a 
product of the definite and orderly evolution which is universal ; a being 
resulting from and driven by the one great nexus of mechanism which 
we call Nature."* 

It is only fair, however, to say that in the next line the Professor 
says (whether consistently or not) that 

" man stands alone, face to face with that mechanism. It is his destiny 
to understand and to control it." 

An approach was made to the mechanical ideal when it was dis- 
covered that heat and light were modes of motion. Another 
approach to the same ideal has been made more recently by 
discoveries connected with the corpuscular composition of the 
atom. This discovery (or probable hypothesis) is stated by 
Professor Duncan as follows : — 

" Our theory of the atom is that it is a sphere of positive electrification 
enclosing a number of negatively electrified corpuscles. The corpuscles 
are similar in all respects with the exception of mere velocity." 

It is the different modes in which the corpuscles are grouped 
and the differences of the number of corpuscles in each group 
that account for the atoms of the different elements. Working 
from this theory 

" we have been able to explain all the mysteries of matter which it has- 
been the function of the preceding pages so describe." 

He refers to the law of the periodicity of the atoms of the elements 
their various valencies, and the phenomena of those elements 
which are inert, i.e. which display no valency whatever. f 

II. Criticism of the Mechanical Theory. 

Science aims at simplification, and the mechanical theory of 
science is an instance of such simplification. It is calculated, 
as Mr. Balfour says, to excite in us " a feeling of acute intellectual 
gratification." But the more a theory pleases us the more closely 
it should be examined, and we turn to the criticisms with which 
this theory has been assailed. 

I. In the first place, we have the criticisms of the so-called 
" Descriptive School " of Scientists. 

It may be true, say the members of this school of thought, that 
the mechanical theory gives us a true description of the sequence 
of phenomena, but we must not think that it brings us any nearer, 
as Professor Hicks' words assert, " to what goes on behind what 
we can see or feel." 

" The object of Natural Science," says Prof. Whetham, " is to fit to- 
gether a consistent and harmonious model which shall represent to our 
minds the phenomena which act on our senses ; ... we cannot de- 
cide whether that model .... represents truly the real structure 
of Nature ; whether, indeed, there be any Nature as an ultimate reality 
behind its phenomena." J 

* " Kingdom of Man," 1907. 

f The New Knowledge, pp. 171. 150. 

i " Recent Development of Physical Science," p. 14, 15. 


Mach says similarly, 

" I hope that the science of the future will discard the idea of cause 
and effect, as being formally obscure ; and in my feeling that these ideas 
contain a strong tincture of fetishism, I am certainly not alone."* 

Professor Hicks calls matter, time, and space the data of a 
mechanical theory. But on this view matter has become a mere 
centre of force ; and even the word " force " is discarded in favour 
of the mere calculation of rapidity of movement or amount of 
acceleration. And in the same way it is recognised that space 
and time are purely relative expressions with no absolute value. 

Lord Kelvin said once that he could never satisfy himself 
until he could make (mentally, I presume) a mechanical model 
of a thing. As long as he could not make a mechanical model 
all the way through, understanding was impossible. From 
the point of view of the Descriptive School this statement is open 
to doubt. We might have a mechanical model which would 
repeat with mathematical accuracy all the ultra-microscopic 
processes of the minutest molecules that take part in a chemical 
combination. Yet nothing would thereby be, in a true sense of 
the word, explained. We should have a picture of the phenomena, 
but we should be as far as ever from understanding the inner 
forces by which these changes are brought about. In fact our 
problem would be doubled, for we should want the model itself 
to be explained as well as the section of reality which it was 
supposed to represent. 

2. In the second place, there is a theory mentioned in the passage 
referred to above from Professor Hicks that the phenomena 
of light, of electricity, of magnetism, and of other forms of radiation, 
cannot be mechanically explained, or even described, without 
the hypothesis of an ethereal medium. Thus in order that the 
mechanical theory may be complete it must be assumed that 
" all phenomena are manifestations of one continuous medium." 

In the same way matter itself, one of the data (according to 
Professor Hicks) of the mechanical theory, is frequently explained 
or described as a mode or modification of the ether. 

" According to Kelvin the ether is the locus of those points at which 
the ether is animated by vortex motions. According to Reimann it 

is the locus of those points at which the ether is being destroyed. According 
to Larmor it is the locus of those points at which the ether is undergoing 
a kind of torsion." 

Now this ether, which enters so largely into the scientific 
description of Nature, is not in itself mechanical, and cannot 
be described in mechanical terms. It is commonly said to be 
inert, incompressible, frictionless, inviscid, structureless, — all 
negative terms. As Clifford says, 

" The liquid of Sir William Thomson's hypothesis is continuous, infinitely 
divisible, not made of molecules at all, and it is absolutely frictionless. 
(In these ways it is sharply contrasted with all the liquids with which 
we can experimentally deal). It is a mathematical fiction." 

* " Popular Scientific Lectures," English Translation, p. 253. 
f (This summary is taken from " The New Physics," by Prof. Poincare, 
p. 167). 


Thus Poincare asks in the face of these facts the pertinent question, 
" By what right do we apply to the ether the mechanical properties 
•observed in ordinary matter ? " 

3. In the third place, even if Nature as a whole could be 
adequately described in mechanical terms, it would not follow 
that the mechanical view was the fundamental view. 

This point is made by Professor Whetham with regard to 
electrical phenomena : — 

" When we turn from mechanics to other branches of physics, it is necessary 
to use certain fundamental conceptions, such as temperature, and quantity 
of electricity, though it is probable that ultimately these will be connected 
with the mechanical units. But such a connection would not show that 
mechanics is necessarily the more fundamental science ; it would be quite as 
correct, when the connection is established, to express mechanical quan- 
tities in terms of electricity or temperature."* 

In other words, if A can be expressed in terms of B, B can be 
expressed in terms of A, and there is no more reason for thinking 
the latter to be fundamental than the former. 

To think otherwise is natural but not justifiable. If we can 
make a picture of the way a thing works we think we have 
explained it, and this is what mechanics does by reducing natural 
processes to the movements of molecules. But, as we have 
seen, the picture, or, to use Kelvin's illustration, our working 
model of nature, does not really explain nature, but stands itself 
in need of explanation. 

4. The mechanical theory and organic life. 

If the mechanical theory is inadequate to explain or even to 
■describe the problems of physics and chemistry, still more is it 
inadequate to explain or describe the problems of organic life. 
We have space to mention three points only in this connection, 
and that in the briefest way possible. 

[A) The problem of organic life itself has been resolved (or has 
been considered resolvable) into chemical or mechanical processes. 
Thus fProf, Ray Lankester offers an emphatic denial to a dictum 
•of Lord Kelvin's to the effect that 

" modern biologists are coming more and more to a firm acceptance of 
. a vital principle." 

Sir Michael Foster in a British Association address (1899) agrees 
with Lord Kelvin that some at least of the problems of life are 
neither mechanical nor chemical. Prof. Burdon Sanderson, who 
said that " the word ' vital ' as distinctive of physiological pro- 
cesses might be abandoned altogether," said, nevertheless, in 
another place : 

" The only satisfactory methods for the investigation of organic life 
being physical or chemical the organisation itself came to be considered 
as a complex of such processes and nothing more. In particular the 
idea of adaptation, which is not a consequence of organism, but its essence 
came to be lost sight of." 

Thus if it is wrong to use the word " Vitalism " in the old 
sense of a " Vital Force," a force, that is, which acts mechanically 
though it has no mechanical origin, yet, at any rate, we have the 

* {op. cit. p. 28). 

I (" Kingdom of Man," pp. 62, 63.) 


admission that there is something in the organism which Hes under 
or goes beyond the processes of mechanics. Prof. Ray Lankester 
seems to admit as much when he says in a passage quoted above 

" man stands face to face with the mechanism of nature. It is his 
destiny to understand and control it." 

Prof. Ward gives the following reason for holding this view, 
and claims for it the support of the Physicists as Loi'd Kelvin 
claimed that of the Biologists : — 

" In the inanimate world we note a general downward trend, the resolution 
of potential energy into kinetic, and of available forms of this into forms 
which are unavailable ; in other words we find a uniform tendency to 
pass in the shortest and easiest way to physical quiescence, fixity, and 
equilibrium. But in the organic world we find a steadily increasing 
differentiation of structure and composition, entailing a large storage of 
potential energy." 

" So diametrically opposed are the two (the organic and the inorganic 
tendencies) that our eminent physicists, with scarcely an exception proclaim 
the problem of life to be ultra-physical."* 

Of course we recognise that no scientilic question is to be settled 
by the counting of heads ; yet these quotations may serve, at any 
rate, to make us pause in the tendency to ascribe too wide a scope 
to the mechanical theory before that theory has been sufficiently 

(B) What is true of Organic Life in general is still more true in 
regard to the problem of sensation and feeling — e.g., the feelings 
of pleasure and pain. Even these scientists who incline most 
strongly to the mechanical theory give up the attempt to account 
for, or to describe, sensation and feeling, in mechanical ways. 

Thus Huxley, who says : 

" I believe we shall arrive at a mechanical equivalent of consciousness, 
just as we have arrived at a mechanical equivalent of heat."f 

says in another place : 

" it seems to me pretty plain that besides matter and motion there 
is a third thing in the Universe, to wit consciousness, which, in the 
hardness of my heart or head, I cannot see to be matter or force or any 
conceivable modification of either." | 

So Tyndall, who spoke of matter containing " the promise and 
potency of life," says nevertheless that 

" the passage from the physics of the brain to the corresponding facts 
of consciousness is unthinkable," 

and that 

" the chasm between the two classes remains intellectualh' impassable." 

(C) I come now to my last point. There are certain scientists 
who maintain the fundamental difference between mechanical 
and psychical processes who nevertheless attempt to save the 
mechanical theory by the theory commonly known as " Conscious 

* (" Naturalism and Agnosticism," vol. i, p. 276, and vol. ii, p. 26). 

t (Macmillan's Magazine, vol. 22, p. '/?<). 

J (" Evolution and Ethics," p. 117 ff.) 

§ (Address to British Association at Norwich, and Belfast Address), 


Whether consciousness is or is not caused by mechanical pro- 
cesses it exercises, on this theory, no influence over those processes, 
which, whether in the body or in the other world, " go along by 
themselves." Thus Huxley says : — 

" All states of consciousness in us, as in them (the brutes), are im- 
mediately caused by molecular changes of the brain substance. It seems 
to me that in men as in brutes, there is no proof that any state of con- 
sciousness is the cause of change of motion in the matter of the organism. 

Consciousness would appear to be related to the mechanism 

of the body simply as a collateral product of its working, and to be 
as completely without power of modifying that working as the steam 
whistle which accompanies the work of a locomotive engine is without 
influence on the machinery."* 

But this theory seems to be sufficiently answered by what we 
know of the processes of biological evolution. I quote in this 
connection a characteristic passage from Prof. James : — 

" On the average what seems best to consciousness is really best for 
the organism. It is a well known fact that pleasures are generally associated 

with beneficial, pains with detrimental experiences These 

coincidences are due, not to any pre-established harmony, but to the 
mere action of natural selection, which would certainly kill off in the long 
run any breed of creatures to whom the fundamentally noxious ex- 
periences seemed enjoyable. An animal that should take pleasure in 
a feeling of suffocation would, if that pleasure were efficacious enough to 
make him keep his head under water, enjoy a longevity of four or five 
minutes. But if conscious pleasure does not re-inforce, and conscious 
pain does not inhibit anything, one does not see (apart from such pre- 
established harmony as would be scouted by the scientific champions of 
the automaton theory) why the most noxious acts, such as burning, might 
not with perfect impunity give thrills of delight, and the most necessary 
ones, such as breathing, cause agony."f 

In the same way the automaton theory would put an end to 
those views of hedonic selection which play a large part in many 
theories of evolution. { 

III. Conclusion. 

I hope that these reflections will show that there is a case 
of considerable strength against the view that the mechanical 
theory of science accounts for, or can conceivably account for 
the problems of organic life, or even of chemistry and physics. 

In conclusion I should like to make a remark — a complaint, I 
might call it — about the dogmatic tone which underlies so much 
scientific writing, especially scientific writing of a popular kind. 

I preface my remark by an illustration. In the case of a jury 
we cannot reasonably complain if they disagree on their verdict, 
but if one juryman says that a verdict of guilty has been given, 
and another that the verdict was not guilty, and a third that no 
verdict was given at all, then, I think, we should have an excellent 
right to be dissatisfied. 

So it is in the scientific world. The layman cannot expect 
scientists to be all agreed. But if he finds scientific experts, not 
only holding contradictory dogmas, but asserting that these dogmas 
are the verdict of the jury of scientists as a whole, he is being unduly 

* (Essays, vol. i., p. 239 ff.) 

t (" Text Book of Psychology," pp. 103, 104). 

I (Wallace, " Darwinism," p. 172). 



puzzled. He will think, and he will think rightly, that the parties 
in question are ignoring unwarrantably, not only their opponents' 
case, but even their opponents' existence. 

I speak as a layman with no claim to be a scientific expert, and 
with no claim to be even a student of science in any but a super- 
ficiar sense. And yet I think I am right in saying that the 
mechanical theory of science is too often put before the world, 
either consciously or unconsciously, as if it were the view of science 
as a whole, as if it was not sharply criticised on scientific grounds, 
and as if no other hypothesis was in competition with it. 


Brouwer, in Comptcs Rcndns, Vol. 149, pp. 1006-1008, com- 
pares two recent analyses of lujaurite from Pilandsberg, in the 
north-east of Rustenburg. with the published analyses of speci- 
mens from the Kola Peninsula (Lapland) and other localities. 
Nos. I. and II. below are the analyses of the Transvaal 
samples, and were performed by M. Pisani, while No. III. is 
an analysis of Kola lujaurite quoted from v. Hackmann. 
























































I 100-30 




Chemical, Metallurgical and Mining Society of South Africa. — 
Saturday. February 26th: A. McArthur Johnston, M.A., M.I.M.M., F.C.S., 
President, in the chair. — " Further notes on Rand Mining " : T. Johnson- 
Suggestions for deahng with the roof of working places in mines, together 
with a general view of underground conditions. — " The Tube-]\Iill circuit and 
classification " : G. O. Smart- The author pointed out how it was possible 
to obtain a more desirable uniformity of condition as regards tonnage and 
moisture in the pulp entering the tube-mill than could be secured by the 
classifiers now in common use on the gold fields. 

South African Society of Civil Engineers. — Wednesday, March 9th : 
H. H. Elliott, A.M.I.C.E., President, in the chair. — " The amalgamation of 
Railways under Union " : H H. Elliott (Presidential address). 

Royal Society of South Africa. — Wednesday, March i6th : S. S. Hough, 
j\I.A. F.R.S., President, in the chair. — " The ovule of the Bruniaceae " : W. T. 
Saxton- — " Some new South African Succulents " : Dr. R. Marlotb. 
A description of Mesembrianthemum mitratiim, discovered in the desert belt, 
east of Port Nolloth, by Mr. Garwood Alston, and of Euphorbia elastica, from 
which a sort of rubber had been prepared in Little Namaqualand. — " Gravity 
on the South African Table land " : Prof. R. A. Lehfeldt- 



A Study of the Agricultural Soils of the Cape Colony. By C. F. Juritz, 
M.A.. D.Sc, F.I.C. pp. vii. + 221. Roy. 8vo. Cape Town : T. Maskew 
Miller. 1909. Price, 7s. 6d. An account of a series of investigations 
into the nature and composition, from an agricultural point of view, of 
about 800 soils from various parts of the Cape Colony ; with a discussion 
of agricultural chemical methods, the relation of the plant-food content 
of certain soils to their geological origin, some of the problems of soil 
alkalinity, and the physical composition of soils. 

Transactions of the Royal Society of South Africa. Vol. I., Pt. 2, 
19 10, pp. 317-477 + xxxviii., 4 plates. los. Cape Town : Published 
by the Society. Contents : — Theorem regarding a sum of differential 
coefficients of Principal Minors of a Jacobian : T. Muir. — Spectrum of the 
Ruby ; a new characteristic test : J. Moir. — -Upper limit for the value 
of a determinant : T. Muir. — Remarks on some experiments with snake- 
venom : W. Frei. — Note on a Ccenunis of the Duikerbok : L. Gough. — 
Evolution of the River System of Griqualand West : A. L. du Toit. — 
Rainfall of South Africa ; the possibility of prediction over the south- 
west : A. G. Howard. — Some points in the Morphology and Biology of 
a new species of Haworthia : S. Schonland. — .Absorption of water by 
the aerial organs of some succulents : S. Schonland. — Note on an 
abnormal seedling of W iddringtonia cupressoides : H. S. Morris. — The 
genesis of the Chemical Elements : J. Moir. — Some new South 
African succulents : R. Marloth. — Evaporation in a current of air : 
J. R. Sutton. — Absorption of water by the aerial organs of plants : R. 
Marloth. — Statement of Silayi with reference to his life among the 
Bushmen : W. E. Stanford. — Some flowering plants from the neigh- 
bourhood of Port Elizabeth : S. Schonland. — Borchardt's form of the 
Eliminant of two equations of the wth degree : T. Muir. — Revised list of 
the Flora of Natal : J. Medley Wood. — Relationships of South African 
Fossil Reptiles to those of other parts of the world : R. Broom. 

Transactions of the Geological Society of South Africa. Vol. XII. 
July-Dec, 1909. pp. 1 12-212, 3 plates. 21s. Johannesburg: Trans- 
vaal Leader Office. Contents : — The Pleistocene deposits of Port ElizaT 
beth : E. H. L. Schwarz. — On contact metamorphism in the Western 
Transvaal : A. L. Hall. — The occurrence of diamonds in Dwyka con- 
glomerate and Amygdaloidal Lavas ; and the origin of the Vaal River 
diamonds : H. S. Harger. — Some notes on the geology of the Katanga 
country and copper belt : F. E. Studt. — On the origin of the South 
African tin deposits : R. Recknagel. — Geological observations in the 
Lace Diamond Mine, now known as Crown Diamond Mine : H. Merensky. 
—Note on the Roberts Victor Diamond Mine : E. H. V. Melvill. 


The Assistant General Secretary (P.O. Box 1497, Cape Town) would be 
glad to receive the correct addresses of the following members, whose last 
known addresses are given below : — 

Boulton, H. C, c/o Messrs. Pauling & Co., Ltd., Broken Hill, Rhodesia^ 

Champion, Ivor Edward, P.O. Roberts Heights, Pretoria. 

Court, S. E.. High Commissioner's Office, Johannesburg. 

Dickie, A., 475, Currie Road, Durban, Natal. 

Durham, James, P.O. Box 2734, Johannesburg. 

Hutt, Ernest W., P.O. Box 2S62, Johannesburg. 

Kessler, L., ^Mining Engineer, Rayton, Transvaal. 

Wilson, Allen, ^y and 38, Steytler's Buildings, Johannesburg. 

Zimmerman, J., P.O. Box 1743. Johannesburg. 


Bv R. Pape. 

A perfect cycle of the lime present in the soil may be observed 
under primitive conditions on some isolated farm, which forms 
a self-supporting and self contained universe in miniature. 

The lime is assimilated by the plants, passes into the animal 
economy and after a longer or shorter journey returns to the 
soil again. Now suppose the soil of such a farm contains suf- 
ficient lime, then no shortage of lime will occur as long as every- 
thing produced on the farm is consumed there, and all waste 
products are returned to the soil. 

The hypothetical case, however, is a very exceptional one, 
and on most of the farms part of the produce is exported beyond 
the farm boundaries, and as a consequence part of the lime 
originally present will be lost. 

The plants assimilate the available lime, i.e., the lime present 
in such a condition that it may serve as a plant food. A soil 
may, on analysis, contain considerable quantities of lime and 
yet be " deficient " in lime from a farmer's point of view. Marble, 
unbroken shells and bones are composed of lime but it takes 
countless years before the forces at work in the soil layer have 
changed these bodies into an assimilable state. 

The lime gathered in the plant passes into the body of the cow 
and is partly used for bone formation, partly exuded again in the 
udder into the milk. Milk contains on the average 075% of 
mineral salts of which lime forms 23% or, 1,000 lbs. of milk con- 
tain about I lb. ii| oz. of lime. For every 1,000 lbs. of milk 
sent away from the farm a loss of i lb. 11 J oz. of lime is therefore 

On farms where large quantities of milk are produced and where 
the original soil was not specially rich in lime, this continuous 
drain, insignificant as it may seem, makes itself seriously felt 
in the exhaustion of the soil. In Europe the practical farmer 
notices a change in vegetation ; when sorrel and mosses begin 
to prevail he knows he must have recourse to a lime-containing 

The exact role lime plays in the milk has not been elucidated 
on all points, but we are able to trace the broad outlines. Nature 
intended milk as the food for the young animal and the real 
purpose of the lime is to help building up the animal body. Man 
has intervened, deflecting milk from its original destination and 
using it for artificial ends in dairying. 

The lime present in milk is partly combined with proteid, 
partly dissolved as lime salt, partly suspended as insoluble salts, 
and the proportion and quantities in which lime is present in 
these three states is of the greatest importance to the dairy farmer. 

The basic lime salts serve as a protection against too rapid 
souring of the milk. When the lactic acid bacteria disintegrate 
milk sugar, forming lactic acid, the free acid combines with the 



basic lime salts present, forming acid lime salts. When no more 
basic salts are available for the neutralisation of acid, then only 
the lactic acid will attack the orthocasein. 

The casein molecule is " double potential " i.e., it contains 
a basic and an anhydric nucleus and we must assume that the 
molecular structure is such that these nuclei have no opportunity 
of mutual neutralisation. Therefore casein can combine with 
a base and form a salt. Possibly the explanation is that on 
contact with a base the casein is dissociated in such a manner 
that the anhydric nucleus obtains liberty of action, whereas on 
the other hand contact with an acid liberates the basic principle. 

In cheese-making we are striving to regulate the formation of 
a salt by casein and acid, hence it is important that no such for- 
mation takes place before the milk is submitted to the special 
process, or at least that such formation be kept within certain 

Professor Lloyd has drawn attention to the fact that a certain 
proportionate relation seems to exist between lime, casein, and lactic 
acid and that a deficiency in one substance is usually accom- 
panied by a deficiency in the other substance. This matter 
wants further elucidation. A proportion between " acid," 
as found by means of the acidimeter, and casein is very probable, 
as casein has. an " acid value " and certainly affects the soda 
solution used in the determination. A proportion between casein 
and lime, again, is probable, as the casein in the milk is bound 
to lime. But the exact relation between the three bodies is not 
yet sufficiently clear. 

The quantities of lactic acid present in milk depend on quantities 
and species of bacteria present, temperature, quantity of milk 
sugar, and the time that has elapsed since drawing. Probably 
a certain " balance " in the composition of milk will eventually 
be found. 

When we introduce rennet into milk, the role of the lime changes. 
The active principle of rennet, a chymosine, affects the colloidal 
and suspended proteid, but leaves the dissolved proteid untouched. 
The ferment changes the ortho-casein into para-casein, but there 
its action stops ; it produces no actual coagulation. As soon 
however as the para-casein comes into contact with soluble lime 
salts a coagulum is formed. This w^as proved by Hammersten 
with artificial milk, containing no lime. The introduction of 
rennet produced no visible change, but the para-casein was preci- 
pitated at once on the subsequent introduction of a lime salt. 
This explains why matured or ripened milk will coagulate more 
readily than absolutely fresh milk, for ripened milk will contain 
more soluble lime salts than fresh milk. On the other hand 
" ripened " milk will give a reduced yield in curds as a greater 
proportion of proteid will be in a dissolved state, due directly 
or indirectly to biological action and consequently escape the 
action of chymosine. 

The effect of a shortage in lime salts becomes apparent at once. 
In curdling, the rennet will change the ortho-casein into para- 
casein, but in case of a shortage in soluble lime salt, part of the 


para-casein will find no opportunity for coagulation and escape in 
the whey. These facts led a German investigator, some ten years 
ago, to an announcement that he had discovered a method for 
■considerably inci"easing the quantity of cheese obtainable from 

This problem of yield is a very vital one in the cheese making 
industry, for it is a well authenticated fact that in cheese making 
only about two-thirds of the protein present is recovered whereas 
one-third is lost in the whey. In general the " yield " is about lo 
lbs. of cheese to the lOO lbs. of milk and if this could be increased 
to II lbs., an increase of io%, as our German friend asserted ; 
this would make a considerable difference to the pockets of cheese 
producers. The remedy was simplicity itself, onh' to add some 
chlorate of lime to the milk. 

Unfortunately all experiments had been made with the milk 
of one herd, containing only o'6o% of salts. Here was a de- 
ficiency of o'i5% and all the chlorate of calcium could do was 
to replace the natural deficiency. When experiments were 
repeated with milk containing the normal quota of salts, the 
addition of chlorate of lime made no difference in yield. 

An increase of the cheese yield is possible if, previous to renneting, 
steps are taken to decrease the proportion of the dissolved protein 
in the milk. This can be ensured in two ways : — 

1. By preventing the development of bacteria in milk, as some 

proteid is dissolved directly or indirectly by bacterial 
activity. This can be done by reducing the milk at 
once after drawing to the lowest obtainable temperature. 

2. By changing dissolved proteid into either colloidal or 

suspended proteid, and this can be done by the agency 
of heat. 

A temperature over bo degs. Cent, will solidify part of the dis- 
solved proteid, and the higher the temperature is carried the more 
protein will solidify. 

There is a material difference in the effect the two methods have 
on the curdling properties of the milk. The chilling of the milk 
has no influence on the lime salt, and such milk will coagulate in 
a normal manner. The heating, however, has the effect of de- 
creasing the proportion of soluble lime salts, and, if the heating 
be carried to the boiling point and prolonged for some time, the 
curdling properties of the milk will be probably destroyed. In 
order to obtain a coagulum from milk which has been heated, it 
is necessary to add some soluble milk salt, like the lactate, citrate, 
or chlorate of calcium or citrate of magnesium. The chlorate of 
lime shows the most vigorous action in reviving the curdling pro- 
perties of milk. From pasteurised milk to which chlorate of lime 
has been added, it is possible to obtain an extra yield of about 
I lb. of cheese per loo lbs. of milk. Here, again, an intimate 
relation between casein, lactic acid and lime is shown. 

In curdling, two-thirds of the protein is abstracted from the 
milk and the acidity of the resulting whey is about one- third lower 
than the acidity of the original milk. At the same time the whey 
contains less lime salts than the milk as the curd encloses one-third 
of the total milk salts. 


The addition of soluble lime salts (though the salts themselves 
may be neutral) radically changes the balance between casein, 
acid and salts. The adding of the lactate, citrate or phosphate 
of lime will increase the acidity of the whey. 

Lloyd found in 1892 that during cheesemaking a large quantity 
of lime is subtracted from the curds. The curd in the cheesevat 
is a casein salt of lime. Attention has been drawn before to the 
double potentiality of the casein molecule and we must assume 
that in contact with lime the anhydric principle is liberated. 

Some authors hold that the lime in the curd is not chemically 
bound but retained there by adhesion. But this theory is unable 
to explain the subsequent processes in the curds. 

Duclaux states that curd contains more than two-thirds and 
sometimes the whole of the phosphates of lime in the milk. Not 
only the suspended salt but part of the dissolved salt is engulfed 
by the coagulum. The latter, however, with more difficulty and 
in proportionate smaller quantities as the milk at the moment of 
curdling showed a higher acidity. 

This does not explain why neutral lime salts added to the milk 
before renneting will increase the acidity of the whey. I am 
inclined to believe that in curdling, acid salts as well are enclosed 
by the coagulum and that this partly explains the lower acidity 
of the whey. Apparently neutral lime salts have the tendency 
of taking the place of acid salts in the forming of coagulum. The 
casein can only retain a proportionate quantity of salt, the displaced 
acid salts remain in the whey and increase the acidity. 

The curd formed in the cheesevat is a casein salt of phosphate of 
lime and the whole process of maturing cheese hinges on the gradual 
elimination of the lime from the curd by lactic acid and the subse- 
quent effect of lactic acid on casein. 

Professor Lloyd described ripening Cheddar cheese as "a solid 
acid in an acid pickle," and this seems a very apt description. 
Professor Freudenreich maintained that the ripening of Gruyere 
cheese is caused by the symbiose (co-operation) of four species of 
lactic acid bacteria. Probably both authors are right, the four 
species of bacteria produce the lactic acid which disintegrates the 

Fresh curds show an entirely different consistency from ripe 
cheese. The curd is whitish, practically tasteless, hard and tough. 
After the lapse of a longer or shorter time the curd changes. The 
colour is different, the curd becomes smooth, soft and silky. This 
difference is due to a chemical change in the casein. The lactic 
acid in the cheese has combined with lime derived from the casein, 
forming lactate of lime. Even after this the lime present continues 
to influence the ripening process, as the lactate of lime forms the 
nutritive medium for certain species of germs. A deficiency of 
lime in the milk, therefore, materially influences the qualit}^ of the 
cheese made out of such milk. The lactic acid forming in the milk 
rapidly absorbs the available basic lime salts and begins to act on 
the casein much earlier than in the ordinary milk. . » > . 

The coagulum formed on renneting is dift'erent in composition. 
Casein coagulates with rennet, but precipitates Mdth acid, there- 


fore in case][of a deficiency in lime, the coagulum will contain a 
larger proportion of precipitated casein. The ripening process is 
considerably accelerated but the cheese yield will be lower, curds 
deficient in lime will be much softer, not so " firm " as ordinary 

Professor Lloyd advises providing cattle with drinking water 
rich in lime to prevent such deficiency, but this is not sufficient in 
all cases. A deficiency can be obviated in three ways : — 

1. By adding a soluble lime salt to the milk before renneting. 

This is the cheapest but at the same time the most hazard- 
ous course. The balance of the milk is artificially upset 
and the composition " improved " in one direction. 
Frequently difficulties arise in the ripening process which 
may become abnormal. 

2. By feeding a lime salt to the cattle either by mixing it with 

the food or by providing a salt lick containing lime. 
This is an improvement on the first-mentioned method 
as now the deficiency of lime is made up in the body of 
the animal ; but the best method is : 

3. To apply a lime fertiliser to the land. This will ensure an 

improved richness in the lime in the grazing and the 
animal receives the lime in a more assimilable condition. 

In the process of butter-making lime plays a less conspicuous 
role. Its influence is noticeable chiefly in the maturing of the 
cream. This maturing is due to the activity of two different 
species of bacteria, peptonising germs and lactic acid germs. 

Matured cream should have a slimy appearance, somewhat 
resembling a custard. This slimy consistency is the work of 
the peptonising bacteria. A certain quantity of lactic acid is 
developed at the same time as this improves the flavour of the 
butter. If a deficiency of lime occurs, the lactic acid forming, 
will, instead of combining with lime, at once begin to act on the 
casein and precipitate it. The peptonising germs produce a 
chymosine-like ferment, which coagulates the casein, but once 
it has been precipitated, the casein can no longer be precipitated 
by this chymosine. 

This little sketch would not be complete if I did not show the 
uncertainty that still exists on certain points about the role, lime 
plays in dairying. This year Mr. W. van Dam published in the 
Reports of the (Netherlands) Government Experimental Stations 
some investigations of curdling. The purpose was to investigate 
the cause why some milk refuses to coagulate, a phenomenon 
hitherto ascribed to deficiency in soluble lime salts. Mr. van 
Dam's conclusions differ widely from the opinions of well known 
authorities, but since the establishment of the dissociation theory 
and the discovery of the radio-active bodies, our conceptions 
of chemistry are undergoing such fundamental changes that a 
clashing with old accepted theories does not any longer warrant 
the simple rejection of a contradictory theory. Mr. van Dam 
states that a distinction must be made between the potential 
degree of acidity as found with the acidimeter and the absolute 


or real degree of acidity, that is the concentration of hvch^ogen 
ions. The latter has been fixed by electrical methods, the value 
found varies between o'i4 and 0*32 x 10-6 normal. For non,- 
coagulating milk o-i6 and 0*22 x 10-6 normal hydrogen was found. 
Therefore a deficiency in hydrogen ions could not be the cause 
of failure to coagulate. 

These measurements made it possible to investigate in what way 
the curdling time depends on the acidity of the milk. The curdling 
time is inversely proportionate to the concentration of hydrogen 
ions. With this result it was possible again to find in which 
way the curdling time is influenced by the soluble lime salts. It 
was shown, however, with great probability that the soluble 
lime salts have very little influence on the rapidity of coagulation. 
The experiments seem to show that the lime bound to casein is 
the dominating factor in coagulation. 

This conception is entirely at variance with the accepted tenet 
that the soluble lime salts exert an accelerating influence, and 
necessitates a careful investigation of the argument always brought 
for the hypothesis. 

It was found that : — 

1. When chlorate of lime is added to milk only about 50% 

of the added salt remains in solution, irrespective of the 
concentration of the solution. For high concentration 
(above 2%) no more lime ions are fixed in non filtrable 
form. That all the same at this percentage the chlorate 
of lime acts acceleratorily, may be explained in this 
way, that the adding of this salt materiall}" increases the 
number of hydrogen ions. 

2. The dissociation of the lime salts in milk is very limited, 

certainly less than 12%. 

3. The adding of soluble oxalate does not (as generally 

supposed) precipitate in the first place the dissolved 
lime salts, but the pseudo-dissolved lime salts. In 
milk containing 50 milligrams CaO (monoxide of calcium) 
per 100 cubic centimeters serum, 12 milligrams CaO 
was precipitated when the equivalent quantity of oxalate 
of potash was added. This milk refused to curdle. 
But by means of a chlorate of lime solution it could 
be regenerated in spite of the fact that the quantity 
of normally dissolved lime salts hardly increased (40 
instead of 39 milligrams per 100 cubic centimeters of 

4. That soluble citrates retard or destroy curdling is always 

explained through precipitation of lime salts, citrate 
of lime does not dissolve easily- But the experiment 
shows something else. When soluble citrates are added, 
the " colloidal " lime salts dissolve normally. The 
percentage of dissolved lime salts increases considerably 
and yet the milk declines to coagulate. Further, it 
is found that citrate of potash wall solve part of the lime 
bound to casein and ^his fact is in accord with the new 


5. It was shown that the retarding in coagulation of diluted 

milk which is commonly explained by dilution of the 

lime salts, may be explained by four circumstances which 

act towards an increase in the time of coagulation. 

Further, it has been pointed out that no great value 

may be attached to the experiments with dilution with 

whey as the influence of small changes in acidity was 

not taken into account. 

I found that milk diluted with oxalate serum showed a different 

coagulation time from milk diluted with ordinary serum, and 

this fact I could not explain. The cause of non-curdling of milk 

was therefore finally sought in a deficiency of lime, specially colloidal 

lime. In i6 milk samples of which 8 did not coagulate or only 

curdled with difficulty, it was found that the easily curdling milk 

contained considerably more lime. 

One cow was yielding milk which declined to coagulate, after 
dosing the animal for three days with 50 grams of bi-phosphate 
of lime per diem, the curdling of the milk was nearly normal. 
It will be noticed that Mr. van Dam, though he explains various 
phenomena in a novel way, yet comes to the same general con- 
clusion as other investigators that the lime is absolutely indispens- 
able for the process of cheese making. 

FIRMED. — In /\sfro)ioiiiiscIic N a citric lit en No. 4392 doubt is 
now thrown on the existence of the comet reported from th=? 
Geneva Observatory. The supposed comet was shown, as a 
Y-shaped nebulosity, near Halley's comet, on a plate exposed 
on February 20tli, and a new comet was said to have been 
discovered at Cardiff in the same position. A plate exposed 
on February i6tli showed a similar object, but no trace thereof 
was discoverable on plates covering" the region where it should 
have been, according to calculation, on February loth and 14th. 
The existence of the comet therefore remains unconfirmed. 

SCIENCE AND INDUSTRY.— Dr. K. C. Machiurni, Pre- 
sident of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, in a recent 
address, referred to the need of industry and science being kept in 
the closest possible relatic^nship. "The awful example — the 
standing' warning — in this respect," said he, " is the case of 
England. There, a few^ years ago was celebrated the 50th anni- 
versary of an English chemist's epoch making discoverv of mauve, 
and yet the jubilee in honour of this man of science was the 
occasion of the funeial oration of the colour industry in his own 
country. This deplorable result was brought about entirely by 
two things that are closely related : first, the failure to keep 
industry in close touch with science, and. second, the impatience 
of the manufacturer and his narrowness as a self-styled ' practical ' 


By J. Brill, Litt.D. 

In connection with the re-organisation of our Secondary and 
Higher Education, which is to be expected on the estabhshment 
of Union, I wish to bring forward some suggestions concerning 
the teaching of Classics in our Secondary Schools, and in connection 
therewith certain alterations in the Matriculation Examination. 
The suggestions I wish to submit are the following : — 

(i) That Latin be removed from the list of compulsory subjects 
in the Matriculation Examination for all candidates who 
want to obtain a degree, diploma, or certificate in Science, 
Medicine, Land Surveying, Mining, Engineering, Commerce 
or Agriculture. 

(2) That in the Matriculation Examination Latin and Greek be 

compulsory, and that the existing standard in these subjects 
be considerably raised for all candidates who want to obtain 
a degree in Literature or Divinity. 

(3) That Latin be a compulsory subject, and its standard con- 

siderably raised for those candidates who want to obtain a 
degree or certificate in Law. 

(4) That, with a view to the preparing of candidates for these 

different examinations, two different types of secondary 
schools be established, or, where this is not practicable, 
two sides in one and the same school, the one having a 
distinctly Classical, the other a pre-eminently Scientific, 
Technical and Commercial character. 
Now that the Union of South Africa has come to a happy con- 
summation, one of the most important duties awaiting the first 
Union Government will be the establishment of a complete system 
of primary, secondary and University education, comprehensive 
enough to embrace the whole of the Union, and at the same time 
so elastic as to readily adapt itself to the local wants of the various 

To enable the Government to perform a task as difficult as it 
is all-important, a good deal of preliminary work will have to be 
done in collecting and arranging the necessary information, both 
as to the systems thus far followed in the various States constituting 
the Union, and as to those in vogue in other countries, in order to 
find out what is worth retaining and what is to be rejected as 
unsuitable to our conditions. 

Lender these circumstances it seemed to me not inopportune to 
lay before this Section of our Association a few thoughts on one 
small portion of the vast field, in the hope of thereby eliciting a 
discussion which might at any rate prove a test of the unanimity 
or otherwise among educationists on the points under debate. I 
have naturally chosen that portion with which a long practical 
experience has made me most familiar, namely, the teaching of 
Classics in our Secondary Schools. 


The first question that occurs to us in this connection is : What 
is the present state of matters with regard to the study of Classics 
in our schools ? and the second is : Can that state of matters be 
regarded as in any way satisfactory ? 

Now, if by Classics we are to understand Greek as well as Latin, 
I have no hesitation in stating that Greek may be looked upon as 
a well-nigh negligible quantity, inasmuch as, with the exception 
of perhaps two or three large schools, Greek can hardly be called 
a class subject in our schools at all. 

In the Grey College School, at any rate, I have, as a rule, taught 
Greek out of the ordinary school hours, for two reasons : (i) because 
there were only a few pupils in each class who took the subject, 
and (2) because I was only too glad to relieve in this manner an 
already overcrowded time-table. 

I shall of course be delighted if the testimony of Classical teachers 
throughout South Africa convicts me of error, but until this hap- 
pens I shall take it that I am justified in stating that the study 
of Greek in our Secondary Schools is unsatisfactory ; I do not say 
as to quality, but as to quantity — i.e., on account of the small 
number of those who take up the subject, and also on account of 
the low standard of the Matriculation requirements for the subject. 
For this reason, in the rest of this paper, my remarks will be con- 
fined mainly to Latin. 

Now, as regards Latin, those of us who are acquainted with 
education in South Africa are well aware that the study of this 
subject in our secondary schools depends entirely on the condition 
of entrance into the University. If in those conditions there is 
any uncertainty or want of definiteness, this will lead unavoidably 
to confusion and disorganisation in our schools. Unfortunately 
the signs of such a want of a firm and definite policy on the part 
of the various University authorities are only too conspicuous. 
While in the Transvaal Technical College Latin is frankly optional 
in Matriculation, the University of the Cape of Good Hope, though 
having Latin as a compulsory subject, yet by certain clauses 
exempts those from Latin who are qualifying for a certificate in 
Land Surveying, Mining and Engineering. 

The effect of this divergence in the examination requirements is 
that we have in our Matriculation classes three kinds of pupils : 
(i) those who take Latin as an ordinary subject, (2) those who 
leave the subject out altogether, and (3) those — and this is the 
worst and most embarrassing kind — who take it uj) on the 
off-chance of passing in it by some stroke of good luck, in which 
case they will get the full Matriculation certificate, while,- in case 
they fail in Latin, but manage without it to scrape together the 
minimum required for a pass, they may still go in for the courses 
for which exemption from Latin is granted. Now, as I know by 
sad experience, the presence of such pupils in a class works like a 
drag on the whole class, as far as the study of Latin is concerned. 
There is, in my opinion, nothing that hampers the work of these 
classes more than this want of homogeneousness and single- 
heartedness among their members. 

The second question I want to ask is : What is the standard in 
Classics, and more especially in Latin, required for candidates for 


Matriculation ? Does that standard afford a sufficient guarantee 
that those who have succeeded in passing have reached the stage 
which enables them to reap the full benefit from the University 
courses in Classics ? 

This is a most serious question, seeing that, if it has to be 
answered in the negative, it cannot but have a deleterious effect 
on the character of University teaching. In fact, it would compel 
the University to do the work of the secondary school, thereby 
lowering the level and frustrating the purpose of the highest educa- 
tion in the land. 

Still, I am afraid, the answer must be that in this respect also 
the position is far from satisfactory. And how could it be other- 
wise, after what I have said about the study of Classics in our 
schools ? For, after all, the standard of an examination must 
depend to a great extent on the average standard attained by the 
candidates who present themselves for such examination. 

The examination in Latin is divided into two sections : Section 
A, comprising translation of passages from set work, with questions 
on the subject-matter and on special points of grammar occurring 
in the same, and Section B : on Grammar, Unseen translation, and 
Composition. With Section B I have not much fault to find, 
but as regards Section A the main question is, wherein does the set 
work consist ? Looking through the University Calendars of the 
last ten years or so, we find that it generally consists of one book 
of Caesar or one of the easier works of Cicero, as De Senectute or 
De Amicitia, and in addition to this of some 150 lines from Ovid 
or Virgil. 

Now, can any one seriously maintain that this amount of reading, 
even if we add a little practice in unseen translation, forms a 
sufficiently broad foundation for a LTniversity course in Classics ? 
Even if we were to add the amount required for Classics in the 
Intermediate examination, the standard appears still ridiculously 
low in the case of students of Literature or Divinity. I do not 
believe that it would pass muster in any European country, 
especially when we notice that in Greek the range is still narrower. 

We find, therefore, after investigation, that the state of matters 
with regard to the study of Classics in our schools is far from 
satisfactory, inasmuch as the Matriculation standard which forms 
the goal of those studies is too low for their proper prosecution in 
the University, while, on the other hand, it proves not seldom for 
our schools too hard a task to attain to even that low standard 
in consequence of the heterogeneous elements which are combined 
in the Matriculation classes. 

It is not difficult to see that, if this state of matters continues, 
whatever else may flourish and prosper under Union, the study of 
the immortal art and literature of the ancients is doomed to lan- 
guish and decay. And I feel convinced that every one here will 
agree with me that it will be an evil day for South Africa when, 
by allowing such a state of matters to endure, it should sever itself 
from the fountain-head of the world's culture. At the same time 
we cannot shut our eyes to the fact that the times have changed 
and that we must change with them. 


There was a time when the University was a place solely devoted 
to the humanities, and it was only right and fair that entrance 
to it could be gained solely by a competent knowledge of Latin 
and Greek, which then was not only the key to all human know- 
ledge, but also the sole medium of intercourse between the learned 
of all countries. But that time is gone by for ever. The study of 
modern languages and their literature, beginning with the mother 
tongue, on the one hand, and, on the other hand, the study of 
nature in all its endless diversity, both from the theoretical and 
the practical side, have claimed and won for themselves a position 
in University education equal to that so long held by the Humani- 
ties. When we recognise this fact, it behoves us to bring our old 
methods into harmony with the new conditions. 

Let us then admit frankly that the modern Lhiiversity. besides 
being the seat of the highest literary culture, broadbased on the 
civilisation of the ancients, has also become the place for every 
form of higher education, technical, industrial, commercial and 
agricultural, and that it is no longer possible to put across the 
entrance to it the barrier of an examination which does not dis- 
criminate between the different aims for which admission to the 
University is sought. 

These are the considerations which have led me to submit my 
first proposition : that Latin be removed from the list of com- 
pulsory subjects in the Matriculation examination for all candidates 
who want to obtain a degree, diploma or certificate in Science, 
Medicine, Land Surveying, Mining, Engineering, Commerce or 
Agriculture. In other words, that we should not go on, as we 
are doing at i)resent, admitting, as it were on the sly, by a side 
gate, candidates for a few subjects, but throw open the gate of the 
University, without the barrier of Latin and Greek, to all whose 
future studies in the University will be concerned mainly with 
Natural Science and Mathematics. 1^ 

In submitting this proposition I wish, however, to emphasise 
the fact that by granting such relief to the students of Science 
the only thing we take from them is a mere smattering of Latin, 
destined to be forgotten more quickly than it has been acquired. 
I still cherish the conviction which I have always held that there 
exists no sounder and firmer basis for a general linguistic education 
than the study of the Latin and Greek languages, nor a better 
means for developing a love for art and literature than the study 
of the art and literature of Greece and Rome. But I maintain 
that there is no connection between such studies and the mere 
smattering of Latin which is all that our secondary schools under 
existing circumstances have been providing. 

And this brings us to the second and, to my mind, more imj^ortant 
part of our subject : the necessary reform and the raising of the 
study of Classics in our secondary schools and. as a direct conse- 
quence, in our University of the future for all who aspire to literary 
culture or would devote themselves to the study of language, 
history or philosophy, which objects cannot be attained without a 
first-hand acquaintance with the language, the literature, history 
and philosophy of the ancients. 


The second proposition I submit is the fohowing : — 

(2) That in the Matriculation examination both Latin and 

Greek be compulsory, and that the standard in these sub- 
jects be considerably raised for candidates who want to 
qualify for a degree in Literature or Divinity ; 
and together with it ought to be taken the third proposition : — 

(3) That Latin be a compulsory subject, and its standard con- 

siderably raised for candidates who want to qualify for a 
degree or certificate in Law. 
I have already stated before that the standard in Classics required 
for Matriculation at present is ridiculously low, and would hardly 
pass muster at any University in other parts of the world. But 
it was difficult, not to say impossible, to change this so long as the 
same standard was required from all candidates without reference 
to the line they were to take up at the University. If, however, 
we recognise the principle that the changed character of the 
University itself renders necessary a change in the conditions 
.of admission, and are willing to admit Science students without 
Latin, on the ground that a knowledge of Latin is not strictly 
necessary for the line of study they have chosen, then we shall be 
in a position to ask for a competent knowledge of both Latin and 
Greek from those who have taken Ancient or Modern Literature, 
Philosophy, History or Divinity for their subject of study, and seek 
a degree in one of those subjects from the University on a similar 
ground, namely, that it is not possible to master any of these 
subjects without a first-hand acquaintance with the civilisations 
of Greece and Rome. 

I should have liked to ask the same — a competent knowledge of 
both Latin and Gresk — from future students of Law. but in a 
perhaps exaggerated spirit of concession, I have instead added my 
third proposition by which only Latin will be required from them, 
but as a matter of course the same amount of Latin which is 
expected from students of Literature, for how could less suffice 
in a country where Roman-Dutch Law forms the basis of our 
Jurisprudence ? 

With regard to the fourth proposition, I believe that the course 
of my argument has made it clear enough not only that the 
establishment of two types of secondary schools would be the 
natural consequence of the introduction of a double Matriculation 
examination, but also what advantages the measure proposed 
would bring to both types of schools. 

In order not to make this paper too long I will, therefore, add 
only one remark to what I have said, and that is that it is not 
without great regret and without having given serious thought 
to the question that I have come to the conclusion that we must 
break with a time-honoured tradition and give up Latin as a 
compulsory subject in Matriculation for at least one-half of the 
candidates. I admit that a knowledge of the vocabulary and 
grammar of Latin is of very great value for the understanding of 
English, as well as for the study of certain other modern languages, 
as French, Italian and Spanish ; and I am the last person to deny 
that the power of reading and appreciating the great Latin authors 


is " a joy for ever," but what I denv is that these objects can be 
gained by the hasty cramming methods which circumstances com- 
pel Classical teachers to adopt in this country. For us there are 
only two alternatives : either to give up Latin or to compel those 
who take the subject to devote at least four years of regular study 
to it. If educationists after investigation and due consideration 
should come to the conclusion that a thorough teaching of Latin 
is possible even in a school where Mathematics and Science form 
the educational basis, and where, besides English and Dutch, one 
or two foreign languages like French and German have to be studied, 
I should rejoice exceedingly, although even then I would prefer to 
await results before coming to a final decision on the matter, but 
for the present I must be allowed to adhere to the motto : multiim, 
non multa, and to the belief that thoroughness in teaching and 
overcrowded curricula do not go together, and that cramming for 
examinations and true education exclude one another. 

It is on these grounds that my conclusion rests that we must 
come to a separation between mainly literary and mainly scientific 
schools, and that Classics ought to form the basis of the formi 

meeting- of the Pharmaceutical Society of Cireat Britain, Dr. 
F. B. Power and Mr. H. Rogerson communicated the results 
of a chemical examination of entire plants of Ornithogalum 
thyrsoidcs, Jacq., carried out by them at the Wellcome Chemi- 
cal Research Laboratories. Complete absence of any alkaloid 
was ascertained in respect of the bulb as well as of the over- 
ground portions of the plant. In addition to the dihydric 
alcohol ipuranol, a dark green resin, amounting' to about 4 
per cent, by weight of the dried plant, was extracted. The 
reputed poisonous properties of the plant were fully confirmed, 
inasmuch as the administration of 5 grammes of the ground, 
air-dried material to guinea-pigs was followed by fatal results. 
The symptoms produced were stated to be in entire agreement 
with those which have been recorded as typical of the poison- 
ing produced in horses by fodder with which the ornithogalum 
had been mixed. Apparently the resin was the chief seat of 
the toxic principle, and especially a portion of the resin which 
was soluble in ether. Although attempts to obtain a definite 
active principle were unsuccessful, it was apparent that there 
were several poisonous substances present. All the extracts 
obtained by the successive treatment of the resin with various 
solvents proved to be physiologically active with the exception 
of the portion extracted by light petroleum. 


By J. C. MacGregor. 

It is difficult to say when and how the present system of the 
Basuto came into being, but it must have been a very long time 
ago indeed. As far back into the centuries as tradition takes 
us — in some cases over twenty generations — we find the same 
system at work, differing perhaps in detail in the various tribes, 
but identical in principle in them all ; which goes to show that 
they all come from a common source. 

Not being able then to get at the beginning of things one can 
only attempt to describe the outlines of the system, as it has 
been for many generations, and as, with very little modification, 
it is to-day. 

The chief of a tribe may be said to begin his public career at 
the time of his circumcision, that is to say, in the usual course 
of things, during his father's life-time. A number of lads of his 
own age — sons, some of them, of his father's circumcision mates — - 
undergo the rite at the same time, and these are henceforth his 
mates, adopt his circumcision name and go through life with 
him as councillors, officers and messengers — his eyes and ears 
among the people. They would marry about the same time ; 
their children would intermarry ; and when the eldest son of 
our young chief came to undergo the lite in his turn, the eldest 
sons of his father's mates would go with him and remain his j^er- 
sonal followers till death. The second son would be accompanied 
by the second sons of his father's mates and so on. 

Thus it came about that every son of a chief at a very early 
age had the nucleus of a following, which increased according 
to his popularity, his father's favour, or other circumstances ; 
and sometimes, as has been seen in the course of their history, 
younger sons have been in a position to secede from the parent 
tribe and form tribes of their own. This indeed is how the 
various tribes came to be formed, and. if it did not happen 
oftener than it did, it is probably due to the ties of blood and 
affinity which bound a young chief's mates to those of his 
elder brother. 

When the sons of a chief reached a suitable age, they would 
leave their father's village, and set up villages of their own : usually 
near their maternal uncles, who were supposed to nurse and serve 
their sister's child : and, in this way, it sometimes happened 
that the eldest son of a secondary wife had more people than 
a younger son of the chief wife, as the maternal uncles of the 
latter would be with his elder brother. One son of the chief, 
however, always remained with his father. He was called 
Mosala-lapeng (the one who remains in the house). He was 
usually a younger son of the first wife, and his duties were to 
assist, and act for his father in every act of chieftainship, and 
support him in his old age. During his father's life-time his 


influence was great, greater even than that of the eldest son. 
But when the old chief died he was apt to be left in evil case ; 
as, when acting for his father, he had probably contrived to 
disoblige his brothers, especially the heir, and had now nothing 
to fall back upon but the bounty of the latter. 

The chief, with the assistance of his mates and uncles, ruled 
the tribe, and the mates and uncles were subject to the influence 
of those among whom they lived, for they did not as a rule live 
at the chief's village ; so that the rule, although patriarchial, 
was by no means autocratic ; indeed, if one may be allowed to 
use a paradox, it was a kind of autocratic democracy ; under 
one chief, it is true, whose word, in the last resort, was law ; 
but who did not rule alone, and who could do little without the 
consent and co-operation of his constitutional advisers who, in 
their turn, were influenced by the people. 

The chief himself was a very busy man, though, owing to the 
sedentary nature of his occupation, and consequent corpulency, 
he was apt to lose credit for industry which was his due. His 
whole day was spent in the lekhotla or court, hearing complaints, 
discussing tribal matters, or trying cases. He was always ac- 
cessible to the meanest of his people, and the complaint of a 
poor man was always heard. 

The lekhotla or Court was a semi-circular structure made of 
reeds, facing north or east, with its back to the prevailing wind. 
When a case was tried, the chief sat in the centre, with his head- 
men and councillors on either side, while the public, who could 
not find room in the semicircle, occupied the open space in front. 
Women were not allowed in the lekhotla except as witnesses 
or as parties in a case. No regular procedure was followed ; 
witnesses and parties speaking when, and as often as they pleased. 
Nothing was more congenial to these people than a complicated 
civil action, or a well-defended criminal case. It was a tourna- 
ment of wits, in- which everyone took part ; the object being the 
stultification of a witness, or the conviction, out of his own 
mouth, of an accused person. All sorts of questions were allowed 
time being no object, and the idea of cautioning the accused against 
committing himself would have been thought silly and subversive 
of justice. The utmost decorum and silence was observed all 
thi'ough a trial, except that now and then an extra shrewd question 
which brought about the confusion of the deponent, would 
elicit applause. When a case had been fully heard, the coun- 
cillors or indeed anyone who cared to do so expressed their 
opinions upon it ; and the chief, speaking last, gave the decision, 
which, although it was not bound to be so, was generally in 
accordance with the finding of the Court. From which it will 
be seen that some of the most important principles of our own 
trial by jury were not altogether absent in these native courts. 

There were usually only two modes of punishment, viz., fine 
and death, though flogging was now and then resorted to, especially 
in the case of juvenile offenders. The death penalty, however, 
was seldom made use of by the Basuto ; the national sense was 
always averse to it. But for all that, persons who made 


themselves obnoxious to the chief were hable to meet with fatal 
accidents when they took their walks abroad. 

A person convicted of witchcraft was probably " eaten up," 
that is to say his property and family were taken from him, 
and he was driven naked into the wilderness, to live or die. That 
is why a person so accused seldom waited for his trial, but fled 
with such of his belongings as he could get together with a view 
to attaching himself to some other chief. If he was unfortimate 
enough to be caught his attempted flight would be considered 
an additional proof of his guilt, and things were likely to go 
hard with him. For though there have been cases where persons 
accused of witchcraft, have been allowed to depart in peace 
with their families and property, they were very rare. All other 
trials were fair enough, and travesties of justice were the ex- 
ception ; but on a charge of witchcraft, the accused had a poor 
chance, and did well to fly if he could. Prosecutions for 
witchcraft have now disappeared among the Basuto, and of 
course the British Government could not allow such a thing ; 
but the persons who really roused the nation to a sense of its 
absurdity were the old sage Mohlomi, who died in 1816. and 
after him the Chief Moshesh. 

Some of the ancient customs are worth noticing. 

Every man was compelled to work for the chief : that is to 
say, to give him a day's labour at least three times a year at 
times of ploughing, weeding, and reaping. These work meetings 
are called Matsena, and any person absenting himself from them 
without sufflcient cause was liable to be fined. The cultivation 
of the field belonging to the chieftainship, called the Tsimo-a-lira, 
was, and is, a binding tribal obligation on every able-bodied male : 
that of the chief's other and personal lands was an attention 
which it was not well to omit ; but as beef and beer were 
always provided, and as these meetings partook of the nature 
of social gatherings where people met, heard "the news, and 
gossiped to their heart's content, they were never regarded as 
a hardship. 

People were expected to help one another in accident or emer- 
gencies. In the case of fire, it was the duty of everyone to run 
to the spot with water and an^'one neglecting to do so was 
liable to be fined. 

In theory everyone was responsible for his neighbour, and 
liable to be punished for the fault of his neighbour if he failed 
to report it. If the spoor of a stolen animal was traced to a 
village, and the inhabitants failed to trace it further, they were 
held collectively responsible ; and unless they produced the thief, 
they had to compensate the owner and pay a fine " to clean 
the ground." 

If any man saw two others fighting, and failed to interfere, 
he was held to share the responsibility if either was hurt. Any 
person hurt by another had a claim to compensation, and if the 
person who wounded him wished to show his regret, it was his 
duty to go and solemnly expectorate on the wound. This was, 
and is, accepted as a proof of the absence of malice aforethought. 


If an unmarried girl became pregnant, the father of tfie 
child had to pay his six head of cattle to her parents ; but, if 
he married her, the payment was reduced to two head, over 
and above the regular dowry. There was little, if any, social 
stigma attached to either of the delinquents in such cases. 

The laws governing family life, inheritance, and marriage, 
were the same among chiefs and commoners, the only difference 
being in the nature and extent of the interests involved. The 
father was the head of the family, but his authority was by no 
means absolute. Each of his wives had a house, and a kraal 
belonging to that house — and the father could not use property 
belonging to one house for the purposes of another. For in- 
stance he could not marry a son of his first house, with the 
cattle paid as a dowry for a daughter of the second house, and 
it was the duty of the brother of each wife {Malome) to see that 
his sister's rights were respected. 

When the father died, the property of each house belonged 
to the eldest son of that house, whose duty it was to provide 
for his own brothers, marry them, and start them in life. 

Besides the property vested in his various houses, the father, 
especially if a chief, or man of rank, had always property of 
his own, acquired by inheritance or other means, which he could 
use as he pleased. At his deatVi all this was inherited by the 
eldest son of the first wife, and he, during his father's lifetime, 
used to watch this with a jealous eye, lest, peradventure, the 
father should be tempted by natural affection to endow unduly 
the house of some favourite wife. This was often the cause 
of strife and bad feeling. 

In ruling families the eldest son of each of the three or four 
principal wives was a chief, but the eldest son of the first wife 
was the chief. Each had his own village or sphere of influence, 
and, if things went well, lived contentedly enough under the 
authority of the elder brother. But it was an authority of 
a very special and limited kind : they would address him and 
speak of him as Morena oaka, Moholo oaka (my chief, my elder), 
with the very greatest respect, but, if he ventured to infringe 
any of their rights^ they would be quick to resent it, even to 
the extent of throwing off their allegiance. 

Such, roughly sketched, are some of the salient points of tlic 
Basuto tribal system and custom. Their law of inheritance 
was a limited form of primogeniture. As long as they had 
plenty of room it answered well, making up in freedom and elasticit}' 
what it lacked in solidarity. It is in a circumscribed country, 
with a growing population, where it is apt to fail. Ties of 
family and expediency, as before stated, bound younger brothers, 
through their mates, to their elder ; but they were not indis- 
soluble, or strong enough to bind against his will a junior, who 
thought himself ill-treated, or whose ambition could not brook 
authority, however mild. It was infinitely preferable to the 
cast iron system of the Zulus, of one chief absolute and despotic 
and the rest nowhere. That made for solidarity indeed, but 
it also made for cruelty, tyranny, and bloodshed without end. 


Marriage was effected by payment to the bride's family of 
a consideration in cattle, called bohali (dowry). The amount 
varied with the times ; at present it is about 15 head. The 
contract is public, and there cannot be too many witnesses 
to it, and to its fulfilment when the cattle are handed over. 
It is said that this custom degrades the woman, and places 
her in the position of a slave or a chattel ; and it is true that 
it is liable to abuse, and to give rise to cupidity, and also that 
there is a danger of small consideration being paid to the in- 
clination of the girl. But these are evils from which our own 
civilisation is not free, and it is commonly reported that in 
reigning families personal inclination in these matters has some- 
times to give way to political expediency. It is very like that 
among the Basuto. In chief's families, marriages, especially 
the first, are political, and inclination of either party is not often 
taken into account : but among the common people, marriage, 
as a rule, is by natural inclination, and after a more or less 
formal courtship. It is not suggested that there are no ex- 
ceptions, but there is a danger of mistaking the exception for 
the rule, for the simple reason that it is the exception which 
attracts attention. 

The Basuto themselves deny, with some indignation, the 
assertion that they sell their daughters, and their denial should 
not be brushed aside without examination ; and if the question 
is examined honestly, and without prejudice, it will be found 
that if it is indeed a sale, it is a very peculiar one. It is true 
that valuable consideration is given, and received, but there the 
resemblance to a sale, in the ordinary sense of the term, ceases. 
The woman, though married, is always, theoretically, under 
guardianship of her own people through the Malome (maternal 
uncle of her children). Her husband may not illtreat her, prostitute 
her, kill her, sell her again when tired of her, as he might a 
slave, a horse, or a cow. He has married her for life ; and 
that is the crux of the whole question. If he illtreats her, she 
can run to her family, who will exact a penalty, before they allow 
her to return. If she leaves her husband, without just cause, he 
can demand the restoration of his cattle, which gives her relatives 
an interest in her good behaviour ; but if, in this last case, she 
has borne children, the husband is called upon to chose, whether 
he will have his children or his cattle. — not the woman ; she 
cannot be compelled to return if she does not wish it. In the 
restoration of such cattle, no account is taken of natural increase. 
The actual number paid are returned. 

Another aspect of the question, which is often lost sight of 
by those who attribute the system to cupidity, is, that as a 
business proposition there is really no profit in it at all ; for, 
if a man gets cattle for his daughters, he has to pay them away 
again for his sons, — a duty which no Mosuto will ever neglect, 
— so that only those families, who have more daughters than sons, 
would profit financially : and, be it remembered, especially by 
those who attribute the system to cupidity, that there is not 
a Mosuto in existence, who, expense notwithstanding, would 


not rather have sons than daughters. But if a man, in the old 
days, could have got a wife without payment, there would have 
been no guarantee for the permanence of the marriage, the 
respect and consideration of the woman, the care of the children, 
or, on the other hand, for the good behaviour of the wife. 

The present writer has no desire to suggest that the native 
bohali is an ideal institution ; he is merely concerned to show 
that it is not so bad as it is sometimes made out to be, and that 
a fair allowance of decent happiness and contentment is possible 
under it for both sexes. Mr. E. Casalis, the famous pioneer 
of the French Mission in Basutoland, after pointing out the evils 
of the system, as he saw them from the missionary point of view, 
was constrained to admit that : — 

" Notwithstanding all these disadvantages, it cannot be denied, that 
marriage by purchase, contracted in the presence of witnesses, of the several 
parties, has been a valuable institution to these barbarous people, who, 
from the absence of any settled principles of morality, might have fallen 
into a state of brutal degradation. From the time that a woman belonged 
to a man for his whole lifetime, the family tie was formed."* 

To show that the system does not in itself, degrade women, 
to the position of slaves or chattels one has only to refer to the 
number of famous women — Mantatisi, the Queen of the Batlokoa, 
for instance — who were all married according to it. The respect 
and obedience paid to them, would hardly have been paid to 
a slave or a chattel. 

There are many other aspects to the Basuto social and political 
system, which is really very complete in all its ramifications ; 
but it would take volumes to consider it in detail, and a much 
longer paper than this to deal with it adequately even in outline. 
But if this little paper succeeds in conveying a rough general 
idea of the conditions of society under which these people have 
lived for many centuries, it will, notwithstanding its shortcomings, 
in some small measure, have fulfilled its object. 

* " The Basutos," page 180. 

CULTURE. — The Second International Congress of Tropical 
Agriculture and Colonial Development will be held in Brussels 
from May 20th to 23rd. Amongst others the following South 
African papers have been promised: "South African cereal 
rusts; with observations on the problem of breeding rust- 
resistant wheats," I. B. Pole-Evans, Plant Pathologrist, Trans- 
vaal; "Problems connected with maize growing in South 
Africa," J. Burtt-Davy, Government Botanist, Transvaal; 
■' Tobacco culture in South Africa," G. M. Odium, late 
Tobacco Expert, Rhodesia; " Dry farming and land settlement 
in South Africa," Dr. W. Macdonald, Dry-land Agronomist, 
Transvaal; " Economic Zoology in African Colonies," E. M. 
Jarvis, Government Veterinary Surgeon, Rhodesia. 


By W. T. Saxton, M.A., F.L.S. 


It has long been a disputed point whether certain South 
African Conifers should be included in the Australian genus 
Callitris or should constitute a separate genus IViddringtoma. 
Tne investigation here reported was undertaken partly with 
the object of finding out whether the anatomy of the two 
genera w^ould throw any light on this question. As will be 
seen, the results entirely support the second alternative, but 
material of only three species has been at present examined, 
and it would be scarcely safe to generalise without studying 
other representative species. Incidentally, however, certain 
peculiarities of structure have been met with, which are unique, 
so far as the writer is aware, and it is upon these that stress 
is laid, rather than upon supposed generic differences, which 
may prove, by further research, to be merely specific. 


The anatomy of leaf bases* and stem of Widdringtonia cup- 
ressoidcs, Callitris verrucosa and Callitris rohiista has been ex- 
amined, the leaf in transverse sections of young twigs and the 
stem in transverse, tangential and (in two cases) radial section. 

(z.) Leaf Bases. — Figure i is a sketch of a transverse '-ec- 
tion of a young twig of Callitris verrucosa, passing through 

Fig. I. 

Fig. 2. 


Transverse section of a young twig of Callitris verrucosa. S = 
Stomata, X = Xylem, P = Phloem, T = Transfusion tissue. ( x6o.) 
„ 2. A part of Fig. i more highly magnified. i^ = Hypoderm, A =Tan- 
nin-sacs, .F = Fibres. Other lettering as in Fig. i. ( x 145.) 

the bases of one whorl of leaves. This shows the position of 
the vascular bundles, transfusion tissue and stomata. 

* Doubtless the free portion of the leaf (a very small proportion is free) 
would show a similar structure to the base, but without using embedded 
material it is difficult to obtain sections. 

ANATOMY OF WtddriugtoJiia axd Callitris. 


A part of this section is shown in more detail in Figure 2, 
where the following points may be noted : (c) the very thick, 
occasionally ridged, cuticle; (b) the position of the .stomata; 
(c) the thick-walled hypoderm; (d) the single layer of rather 
narrow palisade cells; (e) the Tannin-sacs. The position of 
transfusion cells, conjunctive parenchyma and mesophyll is also 

A few of the transfusion cells from another section are shown 
in detail in tigure 3. Bordered pits are present, at least in 
some cases, but their structure is usually entirely obscured by 
irregular thickenings of the cell wall protruding into the cavity. 

Fig. 3. 

Fig. 4. 

Fig. 3. Transfusion tracheids, Callitris verrucosa. F = Fibres. (X415.) 
,, 4. Stoma of Callitris robusta. G = Guard-cells. (X415.) 

Callitris robusta shows an essentially similar structure, ex- 
cept that the stomata are to be found on the outer, exposed, 
surface of the leaf as well as in the angle between two leaves. 
In the immediate neighbourhood of the stomata the hypoderm 
is interrupted. A stoma is shown in F"igure 4. Except for 
differences in thickness of the cuticle the stomata are exactly 
alike in all three species examined, but of the type normally 
met with in other Coniferae. The cuticle is by no means so 
thick in Callitris robusta as it is in C. verrucosa, and, taken as 
a whole, the xerophytic character of the leaf is clearly much 
less pronounced in the former species. 

Fig. 5. 

Fig. 6. 


Transfusion tracheids, Callitris robusta. (X415.) 
Part of a transverse section of a leaf base of Widdringtonia cupres- 
soides. Lettering as before. ( X 145.) 


ANATOMY OF Ji' id d r'lii gtoiiio AND CoUitris. 

The transfusion cells are considerably larger than those of 
C. verrucosa, and bordered pits can nearly always be recog- 
nised. The thickenings of the wall are relatively smaller than 
in that species, and in some cases are absent. These points 
are indicated in Figure 5. 

A part of a section of a leaf of IViddringtouia cuprcssoidcs 
is shown in Figure 6. The most obvious difference between 
this and CaJUtris is in the entire absence of a hypoderm, the 
palisade being found immediately below the epidermis. The 
larger size of the palisade cells may also be noted, and the fact 
that a second layer is also present, but less regular than the 
outer, and with certain of its cells modified as tannin sacs. 
Another difference is in the transfusion cells, in which no 
irregular thickenings are found, only bordered pits, as shown 
in Figure 7. The position of the stomata is essentially the 
same as in CaJUtris robust a. but only a small number are found 
in the angles between the leaves. The cuticle is also thinner 
than in the last-named species. Resin cavities are present in all 
leaves of Callitris and Widdringtonia but have not been figured 

(ii.) Stem. — The structure of the wood of Callitris verrucosa 
as seen in transverse section is shown in Figure 8. The most 

Fig. 7. 

Fig. 8. 


Transfusion tracheids, Widdringtonia cnpressoides. (X415.) 
„ 8. Part of a transverse section of the wood of Callitris verrucosa. M = 
Medullary ray. (Bordered pits are omitted in this figure.) ( x 240.) 

conspicuous feature of the section is the appearance of roughly 
concentric rings of modified tracheids, the walls of which re- 
main unthickened, while their cavities become filled with a 
dense secretion of tannin (?). 

An examination of tangential sections reveals a striking" 
peculiarity in the method of thickening of the tracheids of the 
metaxylem. As far as the writer is aware the 
only Conifer which is known to possess thicken- 
ings other than bordered pits on the walls of the 
metaxylem tracheids is Taxiis, in which con- 
spicuous spiral thickenings are found in addition 
M^\L ^ to, but independent of, the bordered pits. In 
Callitris thickenings are found which originate 
just above and below each bordered pit, and can 
be traced transversely round the tracheid as far 
as the opposite wall. This is indicated 
in Figure 9, in which a part of one of 
Fig. 9. Part oi a ta.ngentia\ section oi the -wood oi Callitris veryucosa. (X415.) 

ANATOMY OF lildd 11 1! gto Ilia AND C'alliti'is. 


the tannin (?) containing tracheids is also shown. It 
may be pointed out that in a z'cry thin median section of a 
bordered pit the thickenings are not seen to extend round the 
cell, but appear only as horns projecting" into the cavity of the 
tracheid from the upper and lower margins of the bordered pit. 

The metaxylem of Callitris robusta only differs from that of 
C. verrucosa in the fact that the contents of the secretory 
tracheids are much less dense than is the case in that species.'* 
In all other respects the structure seems identical. 

In IViddriiigtoiiia cuprcssoidcs the structure of the wood is 
decidedly different from that of CalUfris. A few secretory cells 
are met with, but they are scattered throughout the thickness 
of the wood, and not aggregated to form concentric rings. In 
tangential section the bordered pits are seen to be smaller than 
those of Callitris, and no trace of thickenings, extending from 
their margins, is found. \'ery rarely traces of spiral thicken- 
ing are found in the metaxylem. but not in relation to the pits. 
In some tracheids, however, a considerable number of obliquely 
elongated bordered pits are seen on the tangential w'alls. These 
are very slightly smaller than the circular pits, and may occur 
in either one or two rows. The various points mentioned are 
indicated in Figure jo. 

Fig. 10. 

Fig. 1 1. 

Fig. 10. Part of a tangential section of the wood of Widdringtonia cuprcs- 
soidcs. M = Medullary ray. ( x 4 1 5 . ) 
,, II. Part of a transverse section through the cambium and inner phloem 
of Callitris robusta. Cellulose walls black or deeply shaded : 
Lignilied walls of bast fibres lightly shaded. M = Medullary 
ray. (X270.) 

In all three species the structure of the phloem is the same. 
It consists of alternating concentric bands of hard and soft 

* It is possible that this difference is wholly or partly due to the fact 
that the wood of C. verrucosa had been hardening in alcohol for some 
months, and that of C. robusta for only two days, when cut. The difference 
might also be due to the fact that they were collected at different seasons, 
C. verrucosa in summer, C. robusta in winter. 

286 ANATOMY OF JJ'idd y'ui gto )uo AND CalHtvis. 

bast. The former is composed of a single layer of bast fibres, 
the latter of three layers of thin-walled cells, of which the 
middle layer represents the functional sieve tubes. A small 
part of the phloem of Callitris robiista is shown in Figure ii, 
and the same drawing would serve equally well to ilhistrate 
either of the other species examined. 

I am glad to acknowledge advice and criticism on certain 
points from Mr. W. C. Worsdell, F.L.S., who also cut the sec- 
tions from which Figures 8 and 9 were drawn. I have also to 
than Messrs. J. J. Boocock and G. A. Zahn, of the S.A. School 
of Forestry, for collecting the material of Callitris on which 
the present account is based, and Mr. G. A. Wilmot, M.F., for 
permission to collect this and other material in the Government 
Plantations at Tokai. 

Summary and Conclusions. 

In two species of Callitris thickenings of the cell wall are 
found to occur in connection with the bordered pits, both in 
the wood and in the transfusion tracheids. 

Concentric rings of secretory cells are also characteristic of 
the wood of these two species. 

In the leaf of Callitris a layer of thick-walled hypoderm is 

In Callitris verrucosa very pronounced xerophytic characters 
are met with, but these are less marked in C . robusta. 

In Widdringtonia ciiprcssoides no irregular thickenings of 
the cell wall occur in connection with the bordered pits, either 
in the wood or in the transfusion tracheids. 

Peculiar tracheids are, however, found, in this species, with 
elongated bordered pits on the tangential walls. 

No concentric rings of secretory cells are met with in the 
wood, and in the leaf no hypoderm is found. 

As far as conclusions may be drawn from so small a number 
of species, the genus Widdringtonia seems to be sharply separ- 
ated in anatomical characters from the genus Callitris. 

RHODESIA MOTHS.— At the meeting of the Zoological 
.Society held on the ist March, Sir G. F. Hampson submitted 
a list of moths collected by Mr. S. A. Neave in Northern 
Rhodesia and in the Katanga district. The descriptions include 
close on to 200 hitherto undescribed species. The moths for the 
most part resemble those of W'est Africa, together with many 
East African and Mashonaland types. Owing to the topo- 
graphy of the area considered the fauna presents considerable 
uniformity, and is tropical African in character, the high moun- 
tain forms and those characteristic of the drier regions being 


By A. M. RoBB, M.A. 

In Switzerland each Canton arranges its school system ac- 
cording" to its special circumstances and needs. While the 
Bimd Constitution requires the various Cantons to see that 
the education provided is satisfactory and free, it in no wise 
interferes in the matter of school government. 

The Canton Basel-Stadt consists of the town of Basel and 
two small country districts, with a population of nearly 
126,000. About 24,000 pupils are in attendance at the various 
schools in the Canton. The school system of the Canton 
embraces all grades of instruction from Kindergarten schools 
to the University. 

Principal resolutions of the School Law. — According to the 
School Law every normal child in the Canton must attend 
school for eight years from the age of six. Apart from the 
University all education is free. During the eight compulsory 
years all writing and drawing material, and all printed educa- 
tional matter is free. In this respect Basel goes farther than 
any other Canton, giving books free not only in the Volks- 
schulen but also in the lower divisions of the Higher Schools. 

During the first six school years, religious instruction is 
g'iven by flie teachers and is undenominational. After that 
time it is given by the clergymen on an understanding arrived 
at between the Director of Education and the church authori- 
ties. Religious instruction is not compulsory. Private educa- 
tion is allowed, but the teachers in private schools must be 
fully qualified and recognised by the State. 

KleinkinderscJiulen. — Although compulsory education com- 
mences when a child is six years of age, " Kleinkinderschulen " 
(little children's schools) receiye children of 4-6 years for occu- 
pation suitable to their age, such as story-telling, looking at 
pictures and conversing" about them, playing" with dolls, etc., 
paper folding", little recitations and songs, etc. It would not 
be correct to call these Kindergarten Schools. There are 
about 100 of these schools, which are attended by the children 
of the poorer and lower-middle classes, who are allowed to 
speak Basel German, a kind of Low German, and are taught 
in the same. All these schools are under the supervision of a 
lady inspector, who is consulted by parents wishing" to send 
children to one of them, and who decides which school a child 
shall attend. 

Primary Schools. — The first four school years are passed 
in the Primary Schools, in which, as in other schools, apart 
from the country districts, boys and girls are taught separately. 
In the town there are 12 Primary Schools for boys and 10 for 
girls. From 7 to 17 teachers are employed in each and they 
have no principals. For their conduct and control two inspec- 
tors are appointed, one for the bovs' schools and the other 


for the girls'. Between tliem they supervise the Primary- 
Schools in the country. Also they decide which Primary 
School a child shall attend. 

Every Primary School consists of four classes, each being' 
a one year's course. Throughout all the classes the study of 
German receives great attention. For example, in Class IV., 
the highest in the Primary Schools, out of 26 " hourly " 
periods per week, 10 are devoted to lessons in the native 
tongue, 3 being given to reading, etc., 6 to the language 
in its strict sense, and i to Heimatkunde, which consists of 
observation lessons in plants, animals, etc., of the home dis- 
tricts and the simple study of its geography and history. But 
these " observation " lessons are treated to a great extent as 
" language " lessons. This proportion of the total weekly 
period is considered highly necessary on account of the diffi- 
culties of High German Grammar in itself and of the need of 
correcting the Low German spoken by the children in their 

No class may have more than 52 pupils. This may seem a 
fairly high maximum, but, on the other hand, the classes con- 
tain only normal children as there prevails in Basel a modifica- 
tion of the " Mannheim " svstem. For many years there have 
existed " Spezialklassen " for children of more or less weak 
intellect. In these classes the teaching is adapted to a certain 
extent to the syllabus of instruction for normal pupils, but 
much is left to the discretion of the teacher, who has practi- 
cally a free hand. Children are put into them only with the 
consent of the school doctor and of the parents. "At present 
there are four of these special schools in different parts of the 
town, one having three classes and the others tw'o each. The 
working school day is an hour shorter than that for normal 
children, and in the afternoons only handwork is taken, the 
girls having sewing and knitting, and the boys cardboard 
modelling, etc. The maximum number of pupils in any class 
is 25. " ^ 

Those children who are unfit to work even with the " Spezial- 
klassen " are received into an institution at some distance from 
the town. 

A few years ago a new departure was made. For backward 
girls in the first classes of some of the Primary Schools, who 
were unable to keep pace w^th the normal class owing to shy- 
ness, delicate health, etc., " Forderklassen " (advancement 
classes) were formed. It was intended that in such " Forder- 
klassen " small numbers and skilful handling should secure 
the satisfactory progress of these shy, backward pupils. Dur- 
ing the school year 1906-07 there were 54 pupils in the " For- 
derklassen," of whom, at the end of the year, 33 were given 
to the normal classes, 18 were kept for the second grade " For- 
derklassen," and 3 were sent to the " Spezialklassen." 

As funds are forthcoming, the authorities are gradually 
extending the system throughout the town. At the beginning" 
of the school year in April, there were in operation 17 " For- 
derklassen," distributed amongst five out of the ten Girls' 


Primary Schools. In two of these five there are now com- 
plete groups of four " Forderklassen " running' parallel with 
the four normal classes of the Primary School course, while 
the others have three each. It is hoped to introduce them soon 
in the Boys' Primary Schools and later on into the Secondary 
Schools. At present 26 teachers are emploved solely in con- 
ducting" these two kinds of special classes, namely, the " Spezial- 
klassen " and the " Forderklassen." 

With the fifth school year commence the Middle Schools, 
each with a four-years' course. Pupils are received in the 
lowest classes of these, who have passed successfully through 
the highest class of the Primary Schools. These middle 
schools are of five kinds. There are for boys the Lower 
Gymnasium (or classical school), the Lower Realschule (or 
Modern School) and four Boys' Sekundarschulen; and for 
girls the Lower Tochterschule, or Girls' High School, and 
six Girls' Sekundarschulen. The choice of school is left to 
the parents. 

The Lower Gymnasium and the Lower Realschule prepare 
for the Upper Gymnasium and the Upper Realschule. The 
Lower Tochterschule admits those girls for whom a lengthened 
period at school with a fuller cotn'se of study is intended, and 
who pass on to the Upper Tochterschule. The Sekundar- 
schulen are a continuation of the Primarschulen and receive 
those pupils for whom a simple education not over-reaching 
the compulsory school age is intended. Their aim is to widen 
the knowledge already acquired in the Primarschulen, but step 
beyond the bounds of the latter by the compulsory study of 
another language, in this case French. Pupils who have 
proved themselves incapable of following the instruction in 
French may be exempted from it by the Director of Education 
and may receive instruction in some other subject during the 
French lessons. It may be noted here, that the time given to 
German in the Primary Schools is now fairly equally divided 
between French and German. For the conduct of these 
Secondary Schools, there are two Rectors, one for the boys' 
schools and one for the girls'. Vice-Rectors may act for and 
assist the Rectors. Each school consists of four classes fol- 
lowing one upon the other with a year's course in each. The 
number of pupils in each class must not exceed 45 and the 
weekly time of instruction is from 26 to 30 hours. 

To the Secondary Schools there have been annexed recently 
two years' continuation classes for boys and girls. In addition 
to an extended study of the subjects taken in the normal 
Secondary School course, boys are taught book-keeping, short- 
hand and carpentry, while in the language work special con- 
sideration is given to the vocabulary required for railway, 
postal and telegraph work. The girls' classes are conducted 
in two courses — a Housewifery and a Commercial. Only 
pupils are accepted who undertake to complete the full two- 
years' course in either division. 

There are two Realschulen, a Lower with over 1,100 pupils 
and an Upper with about 600. They are intended to give 


pupils a general " modern " training" and prepare them for 
higher posts in commercial and industrial pursuits. The Upper 
Realschule is especially a preparatory school for higher techni- 
cal, mathematical and natural science studies. The maximum 
number of pupils in Lower School classes is 45, and in the 
Upper 30. 

The Lower Realschule prepares pupils for the Upper. It 
has four classes with a one year's course in each. The course 
of instruction differs little from that of the Boys' Secondary 
Schools except that more time is given to mathematics and 
physics, and English is commenced in the last year. 

The Upper Realschule is divided into a Real or modern and 
a Handelsabteiling or Commercial side, the former compris- 
ing a 4^ years' course, the latter 4 years. The Real division 
finishes with a matriculation examination, the Commercial with 
a diploma. Success in the former qualifies for entrance to the 
Polytechnic at Zurich, as well as to the Mathematical and 
Science courses of the Basel University, the most of the 
matriculated students proceeding to the latter. 

In this Upper School, the provision made for practical w^ork 
in science was very poor. There was no physical laboratory 
for pupils and one small chemical laboratory capable of accom- 
modating 16 boys at a time. There was much costly apparatus 
in glass cases which was used only by the teachers in their 
demonstration lessons. The Rector, however, recognised the 
need for more practical work. The Commercial courses are 
very thorough, including Political Economy, Commercial Law. 
Business Organisation, etc., and four modern languages — 
German, French. English, Italian. 

Lozver and Upper Gymnasium. — The Lower and the Upper 
Gymnasium, the former with about 450 pupils and the latter 
170, are combined under one Rector. Each consists of a 4- 
year course. The Gymnasium is intended to give its pupils a 
general classical training and to prepare them for academic 
studies. Out of 32 periods per week, 14 are devoted to the 
study of Latin and Greek. The numbers in the school are 
decreasing, the Rector's explanation being that the Realschule 
is preferred as more English is taught there. It was his in- 
tention to introduce full English courses at once if they were 
authorised. It may be mentioned here that the Rector of the 
LTpper Realschule wanted optional courses in Latin, which 
would qualify his matriculated pupils for entrance to the Facul- 
ties of Philosophy, Medicine, and even Law at the University. 

Tocliterschulc. — The Lower Tochterschule admits those 
girls whose education is to be more prolonged and comprehen- 
sive. It consists of four classes, each a one-year's course. 
The Upper Tochterschule has two classes. The maximum 
number of pupils in one class must not exceed 45 in the Lower 
and 30 in the Upper School. To the two-years' course of the 
Upper School several " Fortbildungsklassen " (continuation 
classes) are joined. Of these one lasts only a year and prepares 
women teachers for the Kindergarten Schools. Four others 
consist each of a three-years' course, namely, a general course. 


a commercial division, a pedagogic division for the theoretical 
and practical training" of Primary School teachers, and a divi- 
sion which prepares for the " Matriculation " examination with 
the view of academic study. The girls in this school were 
clearly of the better class compared with the girls in the Second- 
ary Schools. On my remarking" on this to the Rector of the 
latter, he admitted that, though there was not supposed to be 
any class distinction in the schools, yet such did exist un- 

Allgcmchie Gciucrhcschulc. — In 1887 there was established 
a General Trades School, the work of which is to give those 
engaged chiefly in trades the necessary training" for their call- 
ing" which cannot be given in the workshop. The school has 
in view on the one side the general training" of those belonging 
to any trade, on the other the education of capable workmen 
for the needs of artistic trades. At the same time instruction 
in drawing, painting", etc., is given in special art classes for 
those not taking" up trade. Instruction is free, except for the 
pupils of the special art classes, and is given both during the 
day time and in the evenings. Many employers have found it 
to their interest to allow their apprentices certain hours of the 
day, e.g., two afternoons a week, to attend the classes. 

For entrance into the Lower Division of this school, pupils 
must have completed their fourteenth year, for the Upper Divi- 
sion the fifteenth. The Lower Division aims at the confirming" 
of school subjects already acquired, i.e., writing, drawing", 
geometry, arithmetic. The work of the Upper Division is to 
supplement the training given in the workshops to builders, 
joiners, locksmiths, mechanics, furniture-designers, book- 
binders, gardeners, etc., and to develop the artistic sense in 
connection with their tasks. The only aim of the school is to 
impart vocational knowledge ; no attempt is made to give the 
smallest measure of liberal education. 

Fraucnarbeiischidc. — The Frauenarbeitschule is intended to 
train women and girls in women's handiwork and in domestic 
work generally. In addition, teachers of needlework for the 
girls' schools are trained here, as also are teachers for the 
cookery and housekeeping classes in the different schools. In- 
struction is free and classes are conducted chiefly in the day- 
time, though also in the evening. Pupils are not admitted 
imtii they have passed their fifteenth birthday. An attempt 
is made to widen the general education of the pupils by giving 
an optional course in German language and literature. 

Charitable Organisations. — For the care of needy children, 
there are public and private organisations, which distribute 
food and clothing and send poor children requiring" change of 
air to holiday homes in the Jura Hills. 

Also in the town there are several children's "refuges," or 
" homes " for the relief of poorer parents, such as those whose 
work keeps them away from home all day. In these " Kinder- 
horte," boys and girls separately are brought together under 
the supervision of teachers for home exercises, play, and con- 


The " Knabenarbeitschulen " (Boys' Work Schools) were 
founded for the purpose of withdrawing" uncared-for boys of 
the middle schools from the streets and giving" them an oppor- 
tunity to occupy themselves in a suitable way during the free 
evening" time from about fiVe o'clock to seven. The course of 
instruction covers cardboard work, carpentry, wood-carving, 
and metal work. They have now developed into a recognised 
institution, giving a regular course of manual instruction to 
boys and receiving State assistance in an ever-increasing" 

The shelters and work schools have proved very beneficial to 
the community. At present about 1,800 children are being 
cared for in the former, and about 1,700 bovs trained in the 

Morally-neglected boys and g'irls, and youthful criminals are 
placed in special reformatories, but at present, out of a total 
of 24,000 children, there are only between 40 and 50 inmates 
of these. 

In the development of the social side of the pupils' lives 
little assistance can be derived from their svstem of physical 
education, which is confined chiefly to drill and gymnastics. 
In the higher schools, however, there are swimming", rowing, 
and shooting" clubs, orchestras, botanical and geological excur- 
sions with teachers, sketching" tours (sometimes of two or three 
days' duration), and holiday colonies in the summer vocation. 

Kindergarten teachers receive their theoretical training in a 
special course of one year at the Tochterschule. For their 
practical work they visit the Kindergarten Schools four times 
a week with the lady inspector. For the Primary Schools 
women get a complete training at the Tochterschule, where 
their is a Pedagogical division with a three-years" course. The 
men are trained in a special normal college, the work of which 
is supplemented by University lectures. The University pre- 
pares for Higher and Middle Teachers' examinations. 

The Basel authorities do not believe in co-education, but 
they employ many male teachers in the girls' schools. The 
proportion of male teachers to women teachers in the Girls' 
Primary Schools is roughly one to two. In the Girls' High 
School, with 1,700 pupils, there is a staff of 60 teachers, of 
whom 36 are men. With regard to relative merits of men 
and women teachers, the Rector of the school stated that he 
found the lady teachers, on the whole, more conscientious in 
the discharge of their duties, but possessed of less initiative 
in introducing improved methods of teaching". 

In these days of changes in the domain of educational affairs, 
a certain steadfastness in any school system is desirable, but 
on the whole the system of Basel seems, in some respects, to 
be rather rigid. For instance, the time allowed per week to 
the various studies, though not the actual time-table itself, is 
fixed for all the schools of any particular class. Again, with 
the exception of the Kindergarten Schools, there is the same 
length of lesson for each subject, namely, one hour periods, 
including" a ten-minutes break at the end of each. An adverse 


criticism of these arrangements on my part was met with a 
counter objection to our system, which, in any particular 
school, has the same length of day for pupils of all ages ex- 
cept the very youngest. In Basel the weekly period for a 
class varies from 20 to 32 hours. Even in the Primary Schools 
alone there is a difference of six hours between the weekly 
period of the lowest class and that of the highest. The Rector 
of the Upper Realschule, however, is firmly convinced that 
forty-minute periods are to be preferred and. along with many 
of the other teachers, is pressing" for their introduction into 
the schools. 

IRRIGATION CONGRESS. — The following programme 
has been arranged for the second South African Irrigation 
Congress, which is to open at Potchefstroom on Tuesday, the 
3rd of May: — " Results of Irrigation, Dry-land, and Evapora- 
tion Experiments," R. W. Thornton, Government Agricul- 
turist, Cape Colony; "The value of irrigation on the High 
Veld," Hon. A. G. Robertson, M.L.C.; '' Periodicity in South 
African Rainfall," R. T. A. Innes, F.R.A.S., Director of the 
Transvaal (Jbservatory ; " Notes on Irrigation in the Trans- 
vaal," F. T. Nicholson, Secretary of the Transvaal Agricul- 
tural Union; " Mooi River, Transvaal," M. R. Collins, 
A.AI.I.C.E.. Executive Irrigation Engineer. Transvaal; "Irri- 
gation development in South Africa with State aid," F. E. 
KantlTack, A.M.I.C.E., Director of Irrigation, Cape Colony; 
" Rotation crops for irrigated lands," J. Burtt-Davy, F.L.S., 
Botanist, Transvaal Agricultural Department; " Some practical 
points on the ' duty of water,' " A. Holm, General Manager, 
Potchefstroom Experimental Farm; "Some aspects of irriga- 
tion in the .South-Western Transvaal," J. A. Neser, M.L.A.; 
" Methods of Farm Irrigation," C. D. H. Braine, A.M.I.C.E , 
Inspecting Irrigation Engineer, Transvaal; "The application 
of irrigation water to orchard lands," R. A. Davis, Transvaal 
Government Horticulturist; "The Donga in connection with 
irrigation." (i. F. Joubert, Agricultural Statistician. Trans- 
vaal; "The correction of hydrographic data." W. A. Lege". 
^UI.C.E., Irrigation Engineer. Cape Colony; "The circula- 
tion of water and its bearing upon plant life," Dr. C. F. 
Juritz, M.A., D.Sc, F.I.C., Senior Government Analyst, Cape 
Colony; " Land Settlement," Dr. W. Macdonald, Dry-land 
Agronomist, Transvaal; " Some Chemical and Physical aspects 
of soils in relation to irrigation," H. J. V'ipond, Acting Chief 
Chemist, Transvaal Agricultural Department. 


By T. R. Sim, F.L.S., F.R.H.S. 

Very large and valuable as have been the collections of 
botanical specimens received in Europe from time to time, 
from Portuguese East Africa, there still remains, so far as I 
know, the absence of any condensed review on the subject of 
this paper. All other parts of South Africa are fairly well 
known to travellers, and the flora of each locality is allocated 
to one or other of the recognised types, but Portuguese East 
Africa remains so much a terra incognita botanically that in 
my paper read before this Association in 1905 on the Ferns of 
South Africa, I had to admit that from this area I had neither 
specimens of, nor records regarding, any species of fern, 
though by analogy I presumed many did exist. It was, conse- 
quentlv, with pleasure that I accepted the invitation of the 
Provincial Government to visit the Province during" 1908, and 
report to Government on its forestal and general condition 
with a view to development, and though the forest flora 
naturally claimed my first attention, the general flora was not 
ignored, and the impressions left are recorded hereunder. 

Portuguese East Africa constitutes what is officially known 
as the Province of Mozambique, and extends along the Indian 
Ocean from 10° S. to 27° S. From the Zambesi southward 
it consists of the coast belt 100 to 150 miles wide, compara- 
tively low and level, and rising only on the Swazi, Transvaal 
and Rhodesian boundaries. North of the Zambesi and East 
of the Shire River and Lake Nyasa it widens northward to 
nearly 300 miles width on the boundary of German East Africa 
and includes several considerable mountains and mountain 
ranges westward. A projecting arm includes the low country 
of the Zambesi valley as far westward at 30° East Longitude. 

There is thus a total range of about one thousand miles in 
length from north to south, and six hundred miles in width 
from east to west; quite enough to admit of, and almost re- 
quire considerable variation in the flora, especially as the 
southern 200 miles are outside the tropic. 

The Province is, as a whole, the lowland portion of south- 
east Africa; its rivers mostly cross it from west to east, and 
are abundant, and of considerable volume, many serving as 
trade waterways where otherwise communication would be 
most difficult, and the larger admit ocean steamers for many 
miles inland, or, if closed by a sand-bar, are navigable inside. 

The whole Province consists either of alluvial flats, rolling 
country of no great altitude, or rocky mountains, and the soil 
may be described as nmd on the flats, sand elsewhere, and 
solid rock on the hills. 

Surface rocks or stones are absent on the flats, and are 
seldom obtainable in the sandy districts; soil is almost equally 
scarce on the mountains. 


Coa.stward. the rivers are tidal and saline, often forming" 
lagoons; inland, and especially westward, beantiful rushing" 
streams on rocky beds are abundant dtiring the rainy summer 
season, though in most parts of tlie Province these stream- 
beds are dry during" winter. 

Though localities differ, the rainfall is usually abundant and 
torrential from November to March, and small or absent dur- 
ing" the other months; tne higher western localities receive 
much more rainfall and moisture than the coast districts, and 
consequently contain better forests as well as better grazing" 
grounds. But taking" the year as a "v^diole, and with regard to 
localities away from the lagoons on the one hand and the 
mountains on the other, there is a tendency toward arid condi- 
tions, which, with the high temperature, tells upon the vegeta- 

This is more marked in some localities than in others, and 
it is on this characteristic, together with soil and localitv. that 
variations mostly depend. 

Taken collectively the l^ora may be described as a sub-arid 
tropical legiuninous vegetation, mostly ligneous, but with con- 
siderable local variation, and with a fair admixture of trees 
and shrubs belonging" to other orders, but comparatively few' 
herbaceous species, and in some large areas very little grass. 
iM-om that of the adjoining" British Colonies the flora differs 
in marked fashion, though the zone limits do not alwavs cor- 
respond exactly with the geographical botmdaries. In the 
south, for instance, the Maputa valley is homogeneous in its 
"•egetation whether in the Province or in Natal, and 
corresponds in soil and vegetation with other valleys 
northward, but differs considerably from other por- 
tions of Xatal, especially in its species of Acacia, 
which genus is well represented in both areas. It also 
differs in having Laiidolpliia in abundance, and it has numerotis 
Peguminous trees, as well as species of Ficus, Adiua, Anona. 
Carcinia, Stcrculia, Cola, Vitcx. Combrctum, etc., which do 
not extend further south, and the exotic, but abundant. 
Anacardium uccidcntalc (the Cashew nut) finds its southern 
limit of naturalisation here. 

On the Swazi, Transvaal and Rhodesian boundaries, the 
greater altitude of these colonies eliminates a large number of 
species in both directions, though the amount of overlap is 
considerable, including Kaffrarian forest species such as 
Podocarpus, Toddalia. Ccltis, Olca. Ptcrocclastrus, Cussonia. 
etc.. which, extending" through the upland forests of Natal, 
are represented more or less sparingly in the Lebombo range. 

On the sea dunes and on sandy tracts near the coast there 
is also a surprising" amount of shrub overlap from the south, 
and in several coast localities north of the Pimpopo almost 
every tree and shrub noted was common to Natal, including": 
Olca vcrnicoso, Rhus longifolia, Schmidclia monoph\Ua. 
Eugenia cordata, Barviugtonia mcanosa. Combrctum Kraussii, 
C. salicifolium. Commiphora Harvcyii. C. car\ccfolia, Ochiia 
arborca, TrichUia cmcfica, Toddalia lanccolafa, Xa)ifhoxxlum 


capoisc. Grczvia sp., Sculopia ZcyJicri, Apodytcs diniidiata, 
Ficiis Ktilis, F. capci:sis, F. na'talcnsis, Exccecoria africcnia, 

On the Zambesi and northward, a very large number of 
species are common to East and West Africa, while on the 
coast the tropical tidal-mud mangroves are cosmopolitan 
within that zone. 

It is impossible to estimate what is the total number of 
species found in the Province, but the outstanding features are 
the predominance of ligneous vegetation and the wide range of 
many of the species. In my " Forest Flora of Portuguese 
East Africa," over 500 species of trees and shrubs are included, 
and doubtless many are omitted, while in regard to Herbaceous 
species no complete list has ever l^een attempted. 

Those geographical botanists who have dealt with Southern 
Africa, generally constitute a floral area embracing eastern 
tropical Africa; thus, Griesbach's "Soudan Region," Bolus' 
** Tropical African Region," and Justus Thode's " Kaffrarian 
Province " agree in general terms, except that the latter is 
intended to be the extra-tropical continuation southward of 
the former. 

Such a general classification is necessary in reviewing Africa 
as a whole, and the flora of Portuguese East Africa practically 
all falls within the larger region so designated, but for closer 
work and with more intimate knowledge such a region is far 
too large, and requires sub-division. 

To what extent the flora of Portuguese East Africa corres- 
ponds v/ith or differs from that beyond its boundaries north 
and north-west I am unable to say, but within itself I would 
suggest the following regions, all of which overlap more or 
less and have some species common to all except No. i, but 
still are sufificientlv distinct to be considered separately. 

I. Tidal-mud Region. 

This extends interruptedly along the coast from Delagoa 
Bay to beyond the Province northward, and embraces all 
muddy shores, river-banks and lagoons subject to daily or 
frequent submersion by tide. This submersion naturally ex- 
cludes all except such shrubs and trees as have developed a 
special xerophytic habit, which allows them to select and retain 
enough fresh water to keep them alive, in the midst of sur- 
roundings which would drown them or kill them with salt, 
but for such special adaptation, and, strangely enough, most 
of them live only within such surroundings. This habit ex- 
tends to certain representatives of several orders, and includes 
the following trees, known collectively as mangroves, viz.: — 

Rhizophorere : RJiizophora mucrouata. 
,, Bnigujcra gymnorhizo. 

Ceriops CandoUiana. 
Meliaceae: Carapa molucccnsis (Xylocarpus granatiiin). 
Combretacese : Lumnitccra raccinosa. 
Lythraces : Soiuicrafia acida. 


Sterctiliaceae : Hcriticni liftoralis. 
Verbenaceae : Aiicciiiiia ofpciiialis. 

The fern Acrosfichuiii aurciDii is an occasional companion to 
these, while on slightly higher but still saline localities 
Tliespesia populnea, Hibiscus iiliaccus and several reeds and 
grasses appear, but on the tidal flats the mud is bare, even 
Cyperaces. Gramineas and Salsolacea; being" very sparingly 

In the southern part of the Province several of the tropical 
mangroves are absent ; the more hardy ones extend south to 
Natal and Transkei but also occur throughout the tropical 
shores, and most of the species are not confined to African 

The export of mangro\e bark for tanning purposes has been 
a source of considerable income in the past, but indiscriminate 
shipping of the bark of the several species has affected the 
reputation of local bark. 

Owing to the rapid exhaustion of the better kinds Govern- 
ment has now temporarily prohibited the export of mangrove 
bark, but encourages the plantation of those kinds likely to be 
of use. Ai'iccnnia, which has little value, and no bark value, 
has practically taken possession of all such localities outside 
the tropic, and unless controlled or destroyed is likely to main- 
tain that dominance. 

The mangroves have a considerable value in fixing tidal mud 
and aiding the settlement of further mud until the altitude is 
sufficient to allow grasses to grow, after which the gradual 
rising of the land continues. In this way probably manv of the 
mud fiats near the Zambesi have risen out of the sea or river, 
and are now above the mangrove level, though still swampv 
during rains. The mangroves, however, extend inland along 
the rivers for manv miles. 

II. Littoral Regiox. 

This comprises two classes of localities, and also extends the 
whole length of the Province. 

In the south it is mostly in the nature of sand-dunes, the 
vegetation of which has already been referred to as l)eing an 
overlap from the south, and many such Gape sand-dune species 
extend to the Zambesi. 

Bevond the Limpopo, however, fresh species appear, 
especially Casuarina, which, standing erect and rigid on bare 
sand-dunes, forms a striking object along the coast, recog- 
nisable from a long distance out at sea. 

Sitnana uiariiima, Sophora foinciitosa, Diospyros sp., 
Gucttarda spcciosa, etc., appear further north, and the exotic 
cocoa-nut and mango form features near the lower rivers. 

The second class of locality belonging to this region in- 
cludes such coast localities as are just above tide mark but are 
flat swamps, or extending gradually toward dry land. Bar- 
ringtonia vaccniosa. Hibiscus tiliaccus, Pliccnix rccliiiata, 
Eugenia curdaia, J'oacanga Tliouarsii. and several species of 


ficiis belonj;- to this type, uliicli also includes numerous 
s^rasses, reeds, and Cyperacese. 

III. Extra-Tropical Thorx-vfld. 

This comprises a larj^e area in the districts of Lourenco 
ISIarques, and Gaza, usually comparatively level, with close 
compact soil of no i^reat depth, and with abundant grass, the 
annual burning- of which kills out most other trees, only iire- 
resisting- Acacias and allied trees surviving. These form an 
open bush-country, the trees standing far enough apart to 
allow the grass to grow freely, and still close enough to give 
a general forest appearance when viewed from a distance. 
Over 20 species of Acacia belong to the Province; most of 
these belong to this region and are gregarious, usually only 
two or three species being present in one locality, each species 
adhering rigidlv to its own soil requirements, which differ 
much. Thus, the Fever-tree, Acacio xanihophlcca, with large 
ghastlv glaucous stems, grows alone on flat clay soils subject 
to inundation; .-!. olbida, another large tree, requires 
rather drier and deeper soil; A. )iigrcsccits and A. Wchvitschii 
prefer dry flat alluvial plains; while A. arahica and A. hirtclla 
approach more on to the sandy soils, and A. caffra var. 
mipcstris prefers rocky banks. 

Other kinds which occur in this region are species of 
Dichrostachys. Albiccio, Schotia, Ficus and Coinbrctum, 
LonchocarpJis Jaxiflorus, llohisauilins spcciosus, Rhus longi- 
folia, R. iusigiiis, etc. Herbaceous Compositae and 
Leguminosce are abundant. Orchids, Liliaceae and Cyper- 
acese are scarce, grasses are numerous, and ferns absent except 
for an occasional patch of Bracken (Ptcris aquiliua). Occa- 
sionally the trees are absent, leaving flat grassy plains. 

IV. Extra-Tropical Saxd-vkld. 

The whole of the coastward portion of Lourenco Marques, 
Gaza and Inhaml:)ane. so far as not alluvial river-valleys, is 
rolling bush-country with light sandy soil — often almost pure 
sand to a great depth. Trichilia cmciica. Commiphora spp. 
Anacardium occidcnialc. Sclcrocarya caffra. Cordyla africana. 
Trachvlohium mossamhicensis. Kigclia piuiiata. Cono- 
pharyhgia. I'crjiiiualia. BracJiylffua. Ficii.s' spp. Erythriiia. 
Aiidradia. Chrysoplivllum. (iarciiiia. Siryclinos. Aiioiia, etc.. 
etc., characterise this region south of the Limpopo, while 
north of it HracJiystcgia spicccformis is added, the latter often 
forming almost pure forest. Grass is scarce and often absent, 
ferns are almost absent except, in occasional places. Poly- 
podium plivmatodcs, P. iiicanum. a.nd Ophioglossnm vulgatuin: 
while epiphytal Orchids are almost equallv rare. Liliaceae 
and terrestrial orchids, if present, were leafless at the time of 
my visit (winter), except a few small-flowered species of Disa 
and Sat\<rinm and one Enliphia. 

The Pine-apple is abundant in a semi-naturalised condition, 
and as field hedges; Sanscvicra is present but scarce, and 
Cassava (manihot) mealies and Mapira (sorghum) are the 
principal native cultures. 


The Baobab and Borassiis both appear in the northern por- 
tion and Coffee occurs wild. A species of Miniusops yields* 
Caoutchouc and Laudolphia species yield rubber. 

\^ Extra-Tropical ]\Iouxtain Range. 

This includes the Lebombo Range along- the Natal. Swazi 
and Transvaal borders — a broken, rocky, rising country, often 
almost destitute of soil, more or less gras^-clad, but contain- 
ing occasional kloofs in which trees are abundant and of many 
kinds, the Cape and Xatal forest species intermingling with 
species from fiu^ther north, further inland and further coast- 
ward. This is, consequently, a comparatively rich flora, alike 
in ligneous, herbaceous and bulbous plants, and includes many 
tnidescribed species. Combrctum is the prevailing genus, 
Acacia species occur, Ficns is well represented, Podocarpus 
is sparingly present, Nuxia oppositifolia forms a large tree, 
Pcltophorum afyicaiiuin is frequent, Dombcya nntltiflora is a 
frequent overlap from the high-veld, Adiiia. Artocarpus and 
Afjjclia overlap from the tropics, while one gregarious tree 
{WciJicaf subpcltata, Sim) occurs here in abundance and has 
not been seen elsewhere except specimens from Mozambique. 
The new genus Diacarpa, having samaroid fruits and pinnate 
leaves and apparentlv allied to Ptccro.v\lon belongs liere. 

Vl. Tropical Forest Region. 

The whole of the tropical coast belt for loo miles inland or 
thereby, may be described as one forest, except where too wet 
for trees to grow. It is a comparatively level tract, alluvial 
in the low lands, somewhat sandy in the higher, sparsely in- 
habited, formerly a slave-raiding area, abundantly supplied 
with tidal rivers, and with considerable lagoons near the coast. 
The forest is of the evergreen broad-leaved type, but the term 
broad-leaved must here be understood as including" Legum- 
inos£e, which order predominates, with pinnate or bipinnate 
leaves. The Leguminous trees, which include very few 
Acacias, are of medium size (say, lo to i8 inches stem- 
diameter) and stand sufficiently far apart to allow a light grass- 
veld underneath; shrub undergrowth is absent, and dead 
stumps of former generations are remarkable by their absence, 
probably through the action of white ants. 

Ptcrocarpus crinaccus, Lonchocarpiis niossanibicciisis, 
Szi'artcia madagascaricnsis, Bauhinia raticiilata, Afcclia quan- 
ccusis, Brachystcgia (several species), Tauiarindns indica, 
Parkia filicoidca, Tctraplcura obtnsaiigiila, and several species 
of Albiacia are some of the Leguminous trees. 

Much larger and more soft-wooded trees occur of such kinds 
as Ficus species. Commiphora species, Combrctum species, 
Cordyla africaiia, Soriiidcia trimcra, Rhus longifolia, Khaya 
scucgaloisis, Milicia africana, Barrcftia umbrosa, Bcrsama 
mossambiccnsis, Blighia sapida. Irvingia mossambicctisis, and 
species of Cola and Stcrculia. 

There are several possibly exotic trees which are now widely 
scattered throughout these forests, including the Mango, the 

300 FLOkA ()]■■ I'()k'lL'(;UESK HAST AFRICA. 

Cashew, the 'Janiarind, and the Kai)ok {Eriudciidroii and 
*t->ouibax): Ziayphns jitjitba and Z. mncrunata are botli fre- 
quent; pahns are scarce. Init inchide one species each of 
Phccuix. Rapliia. /-lorassiis and Hyplueiic, Ijesides the exotic 
Cocoa-nut; ferns are ahnost absent except Plaiy cerium; 
epiphytal ( )rchids are scarce, and Lih'aceae represented only by 
a few species of Aloes, including' the tree form, A. Bainesii, 
and by J^raccciui, an ornamental tree. Rubber is 
obtained throughout these forests from Landolphia species 
also from a small tree — Mascarcnhasia elastica. 

E.vccc curia afi'ic(i)ia (sandalwood) occurs gregariously; Adiiia 
and ArtucarpHs are common along streams; Pandaiuis Liz'i)ig- 
sto)iianus is abundant as a tall slender tree in swampy streams, 
and a small Bamboo occurs. 

On a few wet, sour, sandv flats one bush species of Erica 
is gregarious, and two Protccc and Eugenia cordata and E. 
Guineeiisis occur along" with Cyperacese and swamp grasses. 

Herbaceous and annual plants are few and inconspicuous, 
and the whole flora is rather that of a semi-arid than of a moist 
tropical nature, (hi a few rocky kopjes succulent Eupliorbicc 
ancl Crassuhc apjjear. including the large tree Eupliorhia. com- 
mon in Xatal. 

\'II. Zami'.fsiax Rkgiox. 

Xot having visited the Tete District. I am unable to describe 
the flora there, but records show that, in addition to many of 
the species mentioned under the last region, there are several 
features including" a greater abundance of Acacias and grasses, 
and the presence of such trees as Kirkia acuminata, Hitceria 
edulis. Parinarium inahola. Casearca gladiitormis. Diosp\'ros 
(several s{)ecies). I it ex species, etc. 

A'lII. Tropical AIouxtaix Regiox. 

This also I was unable to visit, but Whyte's collection on 
Milanje. Kirk's on Morambala. and others in Nyasa show 
that altitude eliminates many of the low-countrv forms and 
introduces instead a temperate flora, of which ]]'iddringtonia 
Whytei and [/'. Malio)ii are types. 

With the exception of the tidal-mud region these various 
regions overlap considerably, and probably further acquaint- 
ance will emphasise this, or show that there are a large number 
of species more or less distributed through all. and through 
adjoining" regions, though more abundant in some one than in 

Some of the most widely-distributed plants are doubtfully 
indigenous; among these are the Mango, the Cashew, the 
Tamarind, the Kapok, the Cocoa-nut. the Cotton plant, the 
Pine-apple. Urcna lobata. Hibiscus cannabinus, H. Subdariffa, 
Bixa Orcllana, Ricinus, and even the Borassus Palm. 

The early Portuguese occupation of the ports may have led 
to the introduction of some of these long ago, and slave-raid- 
ing may have aided their distribution afterwards, Avhile the 
subsequent abandonment of native gardens and villages in 
favour of new sites mav account for some of these trees beins" 


now very large specimens and apparently disconnected from 
human agency. Even the Orange and Cajanus indiciis (Dholl) 
are to befouiid abandoned at the present time, and in a century 
or two may appear to be quite indigenous, as is now the case 
with a good many small herbaceous weeds. 

Without a full list of the flora it is impossible to say definitely 
what Orders are represented by most species, since some 
species seldom absent do not form a noticeable feature in the 
landscape, but, taking into account the abundance and size of 
specimens as well as the number of species, I would be inclined 
to arrange the general effect in the following order, viz.: — 

I^eguminosae. "-'i-' I /» i^--^ 

Composita?. -\0^'^'l^ > 

(irammea?. ^^ — ::"^--^ ^ 









Orchidaceae is sparingly represented throughout the Province 
and the number of Fern species is remarkably small, and these 
are not common. 

C)f Erica only one species was noticed, of l*roteacese two 
Protccc and one Faurca, and of Coniferae only one Podocarpus. 
Speaking" generally, the flora of the Province presents the 
following characteristics : — 

I. The prevalence of bush or forest country, and especially 

of Leguminous trees of medium size. 

II. The absence of extensive grass-veld except under trees. 

III. The scarcity of Orchids and Ferns. 

IV. The wide distribution of many species. 

V. The wide distribution of exotic or doubtfullv-indigenous 


VI. The power of recovering" forest growth in a few years 
after cultivated land is abandoned. 

Worthy of notice is the exact knowledge which everv native 
possesses, of the flora of his own district, not only in its 
utilitarian aspect, but also in regard to nomenclature and dis- 
tribution, quite apart from any utility. 

As about ten native and several European languages are in 
use in the Province, and in some of these native languages 
the list of plant names is longer than the whole vocabulary on 
other subjects, and as some plants extend through the whole 
area of the Province, it is no small task to reduce this Babel 
into order, and is only worth doing in regard to the more 
important kinds. These are almost invariably trees, and so 
far as opportunity offered I have dealt with the local nomen- 
clature and utilitarian qualities of the various trees in my Forest 
Flora of the Province, and therefore will not touch upon these 
subjects here. 


With I'^lora and Fauxa Names. 

By Rev. Father Norton, S.S.M. 

In Prof. Meinhof s wonderful book on the Lautlehre, as he 
calls it, on the Bantu dialects, he i^oes some way to reconstruct 
their original common form, as the speech of our Aryan fore- 
fathers has been largely reconstructed by the labours of other 
German scholars. The Professor has had the advantage of 
starting" with the scientific philology built up by their efforts, 
and has applied it in a masterly way, beginning" with a thorough 
investigation and tabulation of the speech sounds of each dia- 
lect, and so proceeding to a Lautlehre of Ur-Bantu. I trust 
he will add to much kindness to a stranger forgiveness for this 
slight study built upon his results. 

In his vocabulary of the original forms of Bantu words, as 
he deduces them from the present dialects, he gives a number 
of flora-fauna names. Let us picture to ourselves from them 
the sort of world the Ur-Bantu lived in, whether about the 
North bend of the ill-starred Congo, as Sir H. Johnson says, 
or elsewhere. Of the 14 simple sounds of his original alphabet, 
none of the vowels (AIU) or semi-vowels (YW) are used to 
begin any word, nor does the guttural nasal (Ng are in sing), 
which often does in the dialects {e.g.. Sesutoj. Of the remaining 
eight, in the words we are considering, T is only used as initial 
of the root in iliTANGA melon, N only in the words for 
buffalo and snake and bee (though all the other stem initials 
are nasalised in the i class, e.g., iNGL' — sheep, stem — GU), the 
continuous, not momentary, B (Y) is used in the names of the 
possibly early-domesticated animals — bull, goat, dog. The 
remaining 20 fauna names begin with K P and the Dutch G. 
The last begins the words for pig and sheep, as well as those 
of the big game, panther and the amphibian hippo and croco- 
dile, with flies and our old friend the locust (already known 
and loved) at the other end of the scale, llie elephant begins 
with a mixed letter, not a pure Dutch (i. nor among the 
original sounds ; hence the wise beast was probably not at first 
known or named. The smaller game begin with P. antelope, 
wild cat. rats and mice, and such small deer, with the hyena, 
and of birds the ostrich only. The rest of the birds begin 
their cackling names with K. and with this company are num- 
1)ered the jabbering ape and the tortoise, snail and bushlouse 
in their shells. In case of animals which utter noises it seems 
natural to suppose that imitation of these had much scope in 
name-giving. When Man, in Mesopotamian phrase, " gave 
names to all cattle and the fowl of the air, and every beast of 
the field," how should he do so but by listening to and repeat- 


iny; the distinctive sound each uttered. Hence KUKU, the 
cock, and ihlvUNGUVU, the crow, whose name gives us in 
English a verb to describe his song when " the jolly cock 
crawis," as Montgomery has it. KWALE is the partridge 
and KANGA the peahen. Again, among beasts, PAKA and 
PUKU are cat and rat, both squeakers in turn. GU, the 
sheep, may have had some relation in the primitive Bantu 
mind to the wallowing GULUVE and GUVU, pig and hippo. 
GIGE, locust, is obviously related to GI, a fly. 

Table of l*"LoRA-h'AU.\A Names. 
(.\11 G's as in Dutch.) 

Tame- GI'LI'VE GU VOGO bull 

VWA dnL; 

VI 'Li 

Wild : GUVU KIM.A. ape P.\KA PUKU \.\TI u ildox 

GWi panther PAL.V antelope 

GOGU elephant PIT I hyena 

Creepint;- thini^s : GWEXA KOMBA snail 

KULU tortoise XOKA snake 

Birds: iliKUNGP'VU PWE ostrich 



Plants: GIKiU KUPA iliTAXGA 

eartlnuii pumpkin 

Of the vegetables, besides the melon, only earthnut and 
pumpkin are given, both beginning with late mixed sounds. It 
would seem that at first the Bantu may have been without even 
those early finds, and have fed on game with promiscuous 
berries, eggs and pupse, moths, etc.. as soon as weaned, as the 
Bushmen and their Bantu pupils did in the famine I speak of 
elsewhere, loo years ago. Ever cramped for variety of 
vegetable, the Bastitos had. till the white man came, pods and 
berries alone for fruit. Yet we tind a tradition that sweetreed 
and millet, or kafircorn, were given to the tirst human couple. 
Maize, on the other hand was introduced in historic times by 
the Portuguese to the Becoana. to eke out their scanty list of 
cane, pumpkin, beans, melon. Our old centenarian told me 
that mealies appeared in Modderpoort district together with 
the missionaries. 

So let us leave the Bantu Adam, with his wide but unridy 
animal kingdom, naming beast and bird and creeping thing; 
for he has nothing nearer fish than crocodile or seal (kuena, 
from which the Basuto chiefs take their title, has both mean- 
ings in inland and coast dialects), and no vegetable kingdom 
to speak of. In conclusion, let us, with Skeat's help, make 
a similar analysis of the English names corresponding, and be 
thankful for our happier lot. that we have not such knowledge 
of fearsome beasts. Fearful they were in days of mammoth, 
but had all nearly passed away from Britain and the Low 


Countries by Anglo-Saxon times. ()f those we found among' 
the Bantu there was the wild-ox only, for bison, which we 
g"et back from Pliny's Latin, was only the A.S. weosend. The 
snake too we had (snacan, to creep, cf. snail); and then we 
come to the small fry, the rat and mouse (Idg. MEUS, steal), 
without the cat, still " walking on its wild lone," as Kipling" 
says, elsewhere, but domesticated in the East (see Herod, and 
his sacred cats of Egypt). Bull, ox, cow, steer are good Eng- 
lish, the last three with long Aryan descent and cousinship. 
Of the other domesticates, dog and its feminine are English, 
hound also Aryan, cf. canis, kvwv. The Picts had goats, 
Kelts neither goat nor swine, but buck is good English, goat 
(haedus) at least European, and pig is English, swine Aryan; 
sheep and ram are Teutonic, but ewe is Aryan (cf. ovis, 
Skt. avi). ( )f the rest named by the Ur-Bantu, locust, tortoise 
are Latin (turtle though Portuguese), monkey is slang Italian 
(though ape is English), elephant and panther are probably 
Hebrew and Sanskrit respectively. The rest are from the 
Greeks, great travellers as some of them were : crocodile, 
hippo, antelope (hyi^oXol). The ostrich is the big bird