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article is devoted by Dr. Rogers to Sir Walter On the "Metrical Tnanslations from ModScott. But here again the biographical sketch ern Gaelic Minstrelsy," which close this first seems to us executed heavily, and without dis- volume, we shall not here comment,- not crimination:-since, after all, Sir Walter was having, for the moment, leisure to examine a songster episodically rather than habitually; and compare them, as we have done with the as such claiming a light and discerning touch. ditties written in a more living language. But There is a wide distinction betwixt the poet the lyrics of Duncan Macintyre-especially who writes for music-such as Burns, or his long poem, "Bendourain, the Otter Moore, or Barry Cornwall-and the poet Mount" (a series of pictures from the wilds of whose thoughts and rhymes tempt the musi- Glenorchy) - have vigor and local color cian. The former must leave much to be enough to justify a volume being devoted to done by his partner-the verses of the latter him by any one thoroughly acquainted with are as often encumbered as decorated by the the subject and able to treat it with gusto. volunteered companionship of another art. Such a one-our notice will have rendered it Curiously enough, with all their beauty and evident-we do not conceive Dr. Rogers to simplicity and flow, not one of Scott's Lochin- be. It rests with himself to change our vars, or County Guys, or Allen-a-Dales has opinion in the five volumes of his collection become a popular song in the wide accepta- which are still to come. tion of the term.
From The Spectator, 1 Sept.
gentleman who can use a gun and his own time. MR. GORDON CUMMING'S ILLUSTRATED Moreover, Mr. Cumming shows that his sports
were the means of life to scores of native sav ages who followed him for the food he killed for them.
THE ANALOGY OF NATURE.
The modern Orion is one of the remarkable men of our day; a man so possessed with the The lecture, which was privately delivered on spirit of the chase that he leaves his country, his Thursday night, was a successful experiment. It kindred and his father's house, his profession and is clever enough, instructive enough, unlearned his prospects of promotion, to hunt savage beasts and amusing enough, to charm large numbers for the mere love of the thing. His museum, for of cultivated idle people, and as many unculti a long time exhibited at Knightsbridge, is now vated working people as can get to hear it. A removed to Piccadilly. As our readers are most little reduction here and there would improve it; of them aware, this museum is composed of the but the bold, easy, colloquial, unpretending tone skins of beasts, skulls and ivory tusks, horns and of the whole, cannot be improved-it just suits antlers, taken in hunting by the collector during the subject. If we might hint a fault, it would five years' wandering in Southern Africa, and be concerning the style of the musical performother huntings in Europe, Asia, and America. ance which accompanied the pictures. The tunes It is undoubtedly the most extraordinary col-selected, whether Scotch or German, should not lection of trophies ever made by one man. The be "melancholy slow." history of the pursuit and capture of large game (for it is against the ravenous and deadly feræ naturæ that Mr. Cumming makes war) is given in detail in the two volumes he published some years ago. He has now worked up certain portions of that book into a lively and very effective lecture, which is improved and illustrated by a series of scenic pictures designed by such men as Leech, Haghe, Harrison Wier, etc. Once or twice in the course of his lecture, Mr. Cumming showed an anxiety to free himself from the charge of cruelty and love of slaughter, which was brought against him at the time of the publication of his book. It is quite clear that the collector of such a museum could not have been cast in the gentlest form of humanity. To be born a mighty hunter, is to be born destructive that is clear. Mr. Cumming could not he tender-hearted to the lions and tigers, elephants and rhinoceroses, he met within his walks abroad. One shrinks at first from the idea of the enormous amount of wild animal life he destroyed for his amusement. It looks like wanton cruelty; but, on reflection, it turns out to be no more cruel than the autumnal recreations of every English
[A beautiful thought was suggested by the Rev. Dr. Channing, that the foliage of every tree when agitated by the wind produced a sound peculiar to itself.]
WHILE to the ear attuned to harmony
From The Press.
Meteorological Essays. By François Arago.
easily satisfy themselves who will take this volume in hand. It opens with an elaborate essay on thunder and lightning, in which are collected with astonishing care those great facts connected with thunderstorms which from their marvellous character have been recorded as well as those minor particulars and observaIr has for sometime been contemplated to tions which have been preserved by the care publish a complete edition of Arago's works of previous investigators. All these facts are in English, and we are glad to see such a com- skilfully marshalled under the sections to mencement made at last as must be eminently which they refer, so that the reader rather satisfactory to our scientific public. To this seems to form conclusions for himself than to first volume an introduction is contributed by have them dictated to him by Arago. This the distinguished Humboldt, who more, per- quality of his mind-never to be valued too haps, than any man living is able to give an highly-commonly gave to his deductions the adequate estimate of Arago's genius; and this force and exactitude of mathematical demonvolume of "Meteorological Essays," including stration, and preserved him in a very remarkthe author's researches on terrestrial magnet- able degree, not only from being led astray by ism, is edited by Colonel Sabine, justly cele- theoretical fancies, or by popular delusions, brated for his attainments in the latter branch but from any chance of his judgment being of science. warped by favorite prepossessions.
Arago devoted himself to scientific pursuit The physical philosopher, blessed with this early. Humboldt's acquaintance with him truthful disposition-and no man can be emi began in 1809. He was then twenty three, nent as a physicist apart from it-has a great and had lately returned from the cost of Africa advantage over the moral philosopher, however having been for some time previously a pris- free he may be from prejudice, and determinoner in a Spanish citadel, at the conclusion of ed to seek truth for its own sake alone. The important trigonometrical operations for con- physicist is surrounded with facts-it is with necting the Balearic islands with the continent. them he deals, and from them he reasons. In the same year, 1809, he was elected a mem- Their significance may sometimes be obscure, ber of the French Academy of Sciences, and but they are to be trusted as far as they go.for upwards of forty years continued his His language is always real: it represents labors in celestial and terrestrial physics, with actual things which every one can recognize, a degree of ardor and success rarely paralleled. Humboldt has chronicled his chief labors, but has hardly done justice to that quality of his genius which is sure to meet with peculiar appreciation in this country.
and hence there can be no dispute as to words. The physical investigator is only in danger when, presuming as he easily may, and as geologists in our day often have done -too much on analogy, he carries his concluArago was indefatigable in collecting facts, sions further than the actual facts will warrant. and in making experiments by which he might But from any danger of this kind mathematimultiply observations. His facts, if they did cal minds like that of Arago are effectually not uniformly precede his theories, yet always preserved by their rigorous adherence to what formed their support and constituted the is known and determined. It is otherwise with groundwork from which he argued. In this the moral or metaphysical philosopher. Dealrespect his practice was the opposite of that ing with the consciousness which is in itself tendency of the French mind to overlook facts impalpable, he is liable to error at every step, in its excessive love of system. The fabled His language is arbitrary. In reasoning, he reply of the Frenchman to one who urged that cannot force his opponents, or even his readers, facts did not support his theory-"Tant pis to attach that meaning to words which he pour les faits"-must greatly lose its point attaches to them himself. Hence interminable after the scrupulous regard paid to facts by arguments and indefinite conclusions. There Arago throughout his whole career. Apart can be no dispute as to the meaning of terms from his original views, his works would be used by physicists-as air and water, iron and eminently valuable merely as the best collec- coal-but who is to determine the meaning tions of facts extant on the particular subjects which is to be attached to the elemental terms on which he wrote. Hence his papers are more than essays-they are scientific histories showing the solid basis on which conclusions rest, and distinguished as much by their copious knowledge-the fruit of years of research and study-as by their profound reflection and luminous and logical reasoning.
Of this peculiarity of Arago's genius all may
of metaphysicians as consciousness and mind, thought and will? Metaphysics will never entitle to rank as a science until its professors pay more attention to facts and less to abstract reasoning.
It is true indeed that the theories of physicists often precede those observations and experiments by which they are demonstrated
any part of her clothes. It was even said that stools were overturned by means of the simple contact of a silk thread.
No appreciable effect of this kind was witnessed
In the presence of the Commission, a delicately suspended magnetic needle did not experience under these circumstances any displacement, either permanent or momentary.
M. Tanchon thought that Mademoiselle Cottin possessed the faculty of distinguishing the north from the south pole of a magnet, by simply touching the two poles with her fingers.
To take a familiar instance, suggested by this volume: Franklin had conjectured rightly the nature of lightning before, with his beautiful experiment of the kite, he drew sparks from the clouds, yet it was nevertheless the obser- by the Commission. vation of facts in the first instance which sug-it is said that under the influence of this young In the accounts communicated to the Academy gested his theory to him, as it was the observa- person's arm, a magnetized needle first vibrated tion of facts which led Newton to the discovery rapidly, and then came to rest at a considerable of gravitation, and Harvey to the theory of distance from the magnetic meridian. the circulation of the blood. In these and in similar cases genius does, no doubt, take a leap. The highest reasoning and the highest imaginative powers are sometimes allied; and as we find that an excited and fervid audience will anticipate the conclusion of an orator's sentence, and, apprehending his idea before it has found appropriate expression, will drown The Commission assured themselves, by varied the conclusion of his period in applause-so a and numerous experiments, that this young girl great mind, expanding by facts being revealed does not possess the supposed faculty of distin to it in a blaze of light, will leap to a conclu-guishing the poles of a magnet by the touch. sion before all the links in the chain of evidence are complete. Such jumps partake of the nature of imagination; but the intellect of great physicists is too calm to repose in these Conclusions without greater certainty; and nothing is more remarkable in the history of science than the patience with which the authors of great discoveries have spent years in working them out, and in giving to them a complete demonstration.
The Commission will not pursue further the enumeration of failures; its members content themselves with declaring, in conclusion, that the only one of the announced facts which was and violent movements in chairs in which the realized in their presence, was that of the sudden young girl sat. Serious suspicions had arisen as to the manner in which these movements were produced, and the Commission determined to subject them to an attentive examination. The Commissioners announced, without disguise, that But, to judge rightly Arago's genius, it their examination would be directed to discover seems to have been wanting in that imagina- what share certain skilful and concealed mantive faculty which we have endeavored to in-œuvres by the hands and feet might have had in dicate. His name is not connected with any it was declared that the young girl had lost her the effect witnessed by them. From this moment great original discovery. His was not an attracting and repelling faculties, and that whenorder of mind which advanced by leaps, but ever they should re-appear we should be apprised. steadily, link by link. He was, as it seems to Many days have since elapsed, and the Commisus, more remarkable for power of classification sion has received no such intimation. We know and analysis than for faculty of origination.- however, that Mademoiselle Angelique Cottin is There may be exceptions to this rule in the still daily presented in drawing-rooms, where she course of his long and arduous labors ;-we repeats her experiments. speak of the general character of his genius only, which was better fitted for carrying out We quote this passage not only as an inand perfecting theories than for suggesting stance of Arago's judicial capacity in scienthem. The mathematical and reasoning mind tific matters, but because it suggests a mode is most conspicuous in his works, his inventive in which some of our scientific societies might power being shown chiefly in the subordinate render themselves extremely useful. It is capacity of devising means to illustrate princi- their part to examine novel phenomena, to ples and extend their application. His facul- determine what is real, to expose imposture, ties were often exercised in a purely judicial and to dispel popular delusion. But, unfortu manner, but at the same time with admirable effect. His report on the case of a girl who it was asserted possessed extraordinary magnetic powers is a good example of his style of dealing with those pretended phenomena which from time to time excite a stir in society. The Academy named a commission, with M. Arago at its head, to inquire into her case, and the following was his report :
nately, that body which would be best fitted for the exercise of such functions in England, the Royal Society, has degenerated from its original purpose, and become little better than a corporation for conferring a style which once was honorary as denoting real eminence in science and literature, but which is fast ceasing to be thought so, since it is now to be secured by connection, and purchased by
It was affirmed that Mademoiselle Cottin ex- In the essay on thunder and lightning, the ercised a very intense, repelling action on bodies general reader will readily recognize the of all kinds, the moment they were touched by justice of the praise we have given to M
The three horses on
Arago for his diligence in collecting facts. On the 12th of April, 1781, Messrs. d'Aussac, The following may be new to some of our de Gautran, and de Lavallongue, were struck by readers, and will appropriately introduce a lightning near Castres, few remarkable facts on the effects of lightning :
which those gentlemen rode were killed on the spot. Only one of the riders, M. d'Aussac, perished.
In June 1826, near Worcester, a mare led by a boy was killed by lightning; the boy was unhurt.
In June 1810, Mr. Cowens was in a room with his dog by his side, when lightning entered the room; the dog only was killed, Mr. Cowens barely felt the shock.
Yellow amber, when rubbed strongly, attracts light bodies, such as down or light feathers, straws, and sawdust. Theophrastus among the Greeks, and Pliny among the Romans, had remarked this property, but without appearing to attach to it more importance than they would have done to any mere accident of form or color. They had no idea that they had thus actually On the 11th of July, 1819, as already related, touched the first link in a long chain of discove-lightning killed nine persons out of the congregaries. They failed to recognize the importance tion assembled at Divine service in the Church of an observation from which the moderns have at Chateau-Neuf-les-Moutiers; but it was not drawn a whole world of facts, as curious by their added that several dogs which were in the church singular character, as they are important in the were all killed without exception. These aniresults which have been deduced from them.- mals were all found dead in the attitudes in They have been called electric phenomena, from which they were before the stroke. the word electron, by which the Greeks designated amber.
In one of his eloquent books, Mr. Ruskin re-sion of the Divine Power communicated to the has a striking passage on the sublime impresmind of men by storms with comparatively little fatal consequence. This thought may be illustrated by M. Arago's researches. It is astonishing that so little damage should be done considering the amount of electric matter discharged by the clouds during a thunderstorm. By experiments made on the Valentino Palace at Turin, it appears that the roof of this building alone, by means of its various conductors, took from the clouds each hour as much lightning matter as would suffice to kill three thousand persons.
Very numerous examples have proved that persons are never struck by lightning without its attacking more particularly portions of metal worn by them. It may, then, be admitted that the danger of being struck is sensibly increased by metals attached to the person. Every one will be ready to admit this, where the metallic masses are at all considerable; I may mention that on the 21st of July, 1819, lightning fell on the prison of Biberach, in Swabia; and that, in the great hall, amidst twenty prisoners, the one struck was the condemned chief of a band of robbers, who was chained by the waist.
In some instances lightning has entirely consumed metals with which it came in contact:
The following fact, reported by Constantini in 1749, is still more directly to the purpose.
One of the most important chapters in the volume is that on the efficacy of lightning conductors. The remarkable exemption of the Temple at Jerusalem from damage by lightning is curiously explained :
We do not learn, either from the Bible or from Josephus, that the Temple at Jerusalem was ever struck by lightning during an interval of more than a thousand years-from the time of ation it was completely exposed to the very freSolomon to the year 70,-although from its situquent and violent thunderstorms of Palestine.
A lady was putting out her hand to close a window during a thunderstorm; the lightning darted, and the gold bracelet which she wore disappeared altogether, so that no vestige of it was found. She herself received only some very Without these preliminary remarks, my read-Remembering the care with which ancient nations ers might have been surprised at my introducing of injury was done, how often, for example, the recorded strokes of lightning by which any degree here the explanation given by the celebrated traveller Brydone, of an accident which happened Roman Annals mention the Capitol and other to a lady of his acquaintance, Mrs. Douglas.
She was looking out of her window during a thunderstorm, when a flash of lightning reduced her bonnet to ashes, without doing any other injury whatsoever. Mr. Brydone considered that the lightning had been attracted by the thin metalic wire supporting the front of the bonnet.
Some curious cases are mentioned from which it seems probable that men resist the effects of lightning better than horses and dogs:
public buildings being struck by lightning,—it appears natural to infer from this silence, with the Orientalist Michaelis, that the Temple did not receive any severe stroke of lightning in the course of ten centuries. The probability of the justness of this inference is much strengthened by the circumstance that the Temple, being overlaid internally and externally with wood, would certainly have caught fire if struck by a violent
Supposing the fact to be thus well established, we have next, with Michaelis and Lichtenberg, to seek a cause, and we find a very simple one.
By a fortuitous circumstance the Temple was determining the duration of the electric spark, armed with lightning-conductors quite similar to to show how brief is the duration of a lightthose which we now employ, and which we owe ning flash, is an example of that adaptative to Franklin's discovery. quality of his mind which we have indicated above. The result is shortly stated:
The roof, constructed in what we now call the Italian manner, and covered with boards of cedar having a thick coating of gold, was garnished from end to end with long, pointed, and gilt-iron which this experiment would authorize when we We shall be keeping far within the conclusion or steel lances, which Josephus said were intended to prevent birds from resting on the roof and brilliant and extensive flashes of lightning of the content ourselves with saying that the most soiling it. The walls also were overlaid through first and second class, even those which appear out their extent with wood thickly gilt. Lastly, to embrace the whole extent of the visible horizon there were in the courts of the Temple cisterns into which the rain from the roof was conducted have not a duration equal to the thousandth part of a second of time. by metallic pipes. We have here both the lightning-rods and a supply of means of conduction so abundant, that Litchenberg is quite right in saying that many of our present apparatuses are far from offering in their construction so satisfac
tory a combination of circumstances.
The conclusion at which I arrive is, that the long immunity enjoyed by the Temple of Jerusalem presents the most manifest proof of the efficacy of lightning-conductors.
Numerous details are given to show the efficacy of ordinary lightning-conductors in preserving buildings from injury during storms. The conductors should be pointed, as the electric fluid is thus more easily attracted.
The whole phenomena of thunderstorms are so copiously treated by the author, and so fully illustrated by instances, that the essay is not only instructive in a high degree, but extremely amusing. Arago's application of Mr. Wheatstone's ingenious rotatory apparatus for
For the means by which this result is arrived at, without the possibility of error, we must refer to the volume itself. The ninth chapter -pages 41 to 48-is one of the most lucid and pleasing descriptions of a scientific experiment we ever met with. Mr. Wheatstone has, however, gone much farther, and demonstrated that the electric spark of our machines does not last the millionth part of a second.
Arago's reputation is firmly fixed in England, but his works are, with some exceptions, very little known, though eminently deserving from their copious matter and clear style, of extensive popularity. The series could not have opened with a more attractive volume, nor have we anything but praise to bestow on the style in which it is presented to us. The complete edition of the works of Arago will be a most welcome contribution to our scientific literature.
THE HUNDRED BOSTON ORATORS: appionted a democrat in principle." Rufus Choate, famous by the Municipal Authorities and other Public Bod- for always driving a substantive and six," is tes, from 1770 to 1852, comprising Historical Glean- reported when he "rolled up those tremendous ings. By J. S. Loring. (Boston, Jewett; London, climaxes, raised his commanding form upon his Trabner & Co.)-These speeches, interspersed toes, came down upon his heels like two pavier's with biographical sketches, are interesting as ex-rammers, and shook the whole firmament of the amples of American eloquence, and as commen- Common Council chamber like an earthquake." taries on the political and personal history of the "If the magnetic telegraph were affixed to his Union. The orations, as well as the criticisms, lips the words would leap upon the wires." His abound in hyperbole. Benjamin Harding, a mind "is as rapid as consists with sanity." His "carving-knife whetted on a brick-bat," is de- autograph "resembles the map of Ohio." By a picted as a man with "a livid face," a "deform- still bolder rhetorician we are told of "a roar ed finger, crooked like an audacious note of of laughter which, like a feu-de-joie, would run interrogation," who spoke so severely that had down the course of ages," by another, of a man Job been afflicted with a speech from him "he "the motion of whose pyrotechnic mind was as would have bounced, like a parched pea, from the whiz of a hundred rockets." Specimens like his stabular mound, seized upon the adjacent these do not, of course, represent the qualities pitchfork, and scattered death and destruction of American oratory; but they are fair illustraaround him." He accused his antagonist of tions of its faults. Íts excellencies are many coming "from a country where the people could and striking; but before a speaker rises into elosee a dollar with the naked eye as far as through quence he must forget the use of this turgid lana telescope." Hillard's Boston philippic is said guage, which contrasted with it, is like the froth to have contained "passages of the highest elo- in a pot compared with the foam of the ocean.quence, couched in language of a Tyrian dye." Athenæum. David Henshaw was "a Hercules in intellect and