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I12 I 20 120
OUR ASTRONOMICAL COLUMN. R. H. Frost at Arequipa, who successfully photographed
the planet's trail, with the 24-inch Bruce telescope, in OBSERVATIONS of Jupiter's GREAT RED
Spor.-In April, 1904.
The plates have now been measured by Mrs. No. 4034 of the Astronomische Nachrichten Mr. Stanley Fleming, and the positions of both ends of the trail on Williams gives the results of the observations of the Great
April 4 and on April 7 determined. The results are given Red Spot on Jupiter made by him during the period June in Circular No. 101 of the Harvard College Observatory. 20, 1904-January 21, 1905.
OBSERVATIONS Puebe.—Saturn's ninth satellite, During this opposition the phenomena proved of exceptional interest on account of the vagaries in the relative
Phæbe, was photographed by Mr. R. H. Frost at Arequipa motions of the Red Spot and its immediately surrounding
on four nights during May, and the following positions
have been obtained from measurements of the plates : features. When the first observation was made, on June 20, it
Difference Position Date
angle was seen that the immense mass of dark material, known as the south tropical disturbance, had, after making a May 9
+58 56 8 complete circuit of the planet, again overtaken and
+64 54'4 enveloped the Red Spot. On July 26 nearly all this dark
57*1 material had drifted past the Red Spot, which in August
n 13 20 48
12'0 +6.6 was quite separate, but very faint.
Mr. Williams's observations also afforded further evidence The above quantities all refer to the position of the of the variable rate of motion of the Great Red Spot.
satellite in regard to Saturn's centre. A comparison of
these positions with those computed from Dr. Ross's SUN-SPOT SPECTRA.-During the year ended March, 1905, ephemeris shows that on the mean date, May 11, the comMr. W. M. Mitchell, of the Princeton Observatory (N.J.), puted distances should be diminished by 0-3, and the made an exhaustive series of observations of that part of position-angles should be increased by 0°9 (Harvard the sun-spot spectrum which is included between F and a.
College Observatory Circular, No. 102). These observations took note of the two separate features
VARIABLE STARS S SAGITTA AND of the spot spectrum :-(1) the nearly continuous absorption known as the spot-band, and (2) the affected Fraun
Y OPHIUCHI.-From a discussion of the observations made hofer lines. A rapid survey of the whole region was first
by himself, combined with those of other observers, M. M. made on each observing day, and was followed by an
Luizet has deduced the following elements for the lightexhaustive examination of some smaller portion.
curve of the variable star S Sagittæ (Ch. 7149) :
In regard to the first of the above features, Mr. Mitchell
Maximum 240986333 (M.T. Paris)} +8:38209d. (E. – 389) arrived at the conclusion that the band-lines are lines which
Minimum 2409860-37 do not appear in the Fraunhoferic spectrum at all, and he The light-curve of this star presents a double oscillation, submits facts in favour of this view.
and, according to M. Luizet's scale, the magnitude varies In observing the affected Fraunhoferic lines, the observer between 5-4 and 6.2. recorded nine different phenomena (e.g. widening, reversal, For Y Ophiuchi (Ch. 6404), the same observer finds obliteration, &c.), and in his table of the 680 lines which that M. Hisgen's elements, he observed in the spot spectrum, he classifies each line according to the manner in which it was affected. The
Maximum 2408694'25 (G.M.T.)
+17'1207d. E., intensities of the widened lines, their intensities in the
Minimum 2408688'03 normal solar spectrum, the number of times each line was as published in No. 3424 of the Astronomische Nachrichten, observed, and various other details concerning the affected agree very well with his own recent observations. From a lines are also recorded in the table.
comparison of these observations with those made by Mr. Each element involved is then considered separately, and Sawyer, it appears that during the last fifteen years the a number of valuable conclusions are deduced. Whilst magnitude of Y Ophiuchi has slightly increased, but this vanadium and titanium are the most important elements apparent increase may be due to the difference of observer concerned in sun-spots, as previously shown by Young, and of observing conditions (Astronomische Nachrichten, Cortie, and Lockyer, Mr. Mitchell finds that manganese
No. 4030). plays an important role, 45 per cent. of its lines being affected. A striking comparison is drawn between the behaviour of certain manganese lines in the successive THE MEETING OF THE BRITISH MEDICAL observations of the great sun-spot of February last. On
ASSOCIATION. February 3 and 4 they were noted as being strongly reVersed, whereas on March 3 they were no longer reversed. THE seventy-third annual meeting of the British Medical but were excessively widened and very hazy.
Association was held at Leicester last week under The following general conclusions were arrived at by
the presidency of Mr. Cooper Franklin, surgeon to the Mr. Mitchell, and agree, in general, with those recently
Leicester Infirmary. The proceedings were conducted in published by Prof. Fowler in the Monthly Notices :
twelve sections, and
well attended, nearly 1000 (1) Lines frequently seen in the chromosphere are, with
members registering their names. two exceptions, but little affected in spots; (2) high-level
Mr. Cooper Franklin chose for his presidential address chromospheric lines are not affected in spots; (3) lines
the subject of medical education, past, present, and future. greatly affected in spots are seen but rarely in the chromo
He dealt with the various Acts of Parliament regulating sphere.
medical education and practice, the condition of medical From his observations and conclusions Mr. Mitchell
education in London forty years ago, and insisted on deduces that sun-spots are, at least, below the chromo
the necessity of a good general education if the medical sphere, and are probably caused by the heated vapours
student were to become a good practitioner, and advocated from the lower levels oozing through and vaporising the
a study of Latin and Greek. He said :-"I think the clouds of the photosphere (Astrophysical Journal, No. 1,
advantages of a good classical education early, to a man vol. xxii.).
entering our profession, cannot be over-rated. Nothing
will, or can, make up for it; there would not be so many AN INTERESTING ASTEROID, Occlo (475). --Owing to its
candidates deficient in ordinary spelling and composition large southerly declination, -62°, at the time of its dis
if there had been a good classical education. To my mind covery, the minor planet Occlo was looked upon as of there is nothing really superior to the old-fashioned Latin special interest, and when the orbit was computed and and Greek training, but it seems hopeless to insist nowa found to have a greater eccentricity than that of any days upon the retention of Greek. I think it is twenty. other known asteroid the interest in this object was in- five or thirty years ago since, in the matriculation examincreased. This great eccentricity suggested that Occlo ation of the University of London, students were allowed might be looked upon as the connecting link between the to take up German instead of Greek. I venture to think asteroids and the periodic comets. In order that the object that, so far as medical students are concerned, that was a should not be lost sight of, Prof. Kreutz had an ephemeris retrograde step. I do not envy the student sitting down to for 1905 computed, and this was communicated to Mr. learn his anatomy who has not learnt even a little Latin
and Greek; his Gray's 'Anatomy,' perchance, in front of on hospital isolation was introduced by Dr. George Wilson him, his Latin dictionary on one side, and his Greek (Warwick), who stated that the deductions he would bring lexicon on the other. The student, too, must not begin forward were the outcome of thirty-two years' experience. to specialise too soon; he wants a liberal education, an With regard to small-pox isolation, he contended for a education for its own sake. This goes when the technical special block at the general infectious hospital, and, in his education begins—that is, when he leaves school or college opinion, there was very little risk of the spread of infecto learn to be a 'doctor.
tion. With regard to scarlet fever, he stated that hospital Dr. Henry Maudsley delivered an address on medicine, isolation had failed in reducing the incidence and mortality present and prospective, in which he discussed preventive of the disease. He was also sure that it did not cause medicine, heredity in disease, &c. He sounded a note of the presence of the milder form of the infection, and was warning with regard to our present sanatorium treatment strongly in favour of separate isolation rather than aggreof tuberculosis which may be quoted :—“ But is phthisisgation in large wards. so very curable in these special hospitals, nowise endued Several speakers considered that hospital isolation for with any special grace, I imagine, by reason of their being scarlet fever was a failure, and a resolution was adopted called sanatoriums? Adequate statistics are not yet avail-requesting an inquiry by the Local Government Board into able, but thus far the modest outcome of experience seems the subject. to be that many patients who are sent in the early stage In the section of industrial hygiene the subject of of the disease recover, if they are kept long enough ; that physical deterioration naturally attracted a good deal of most of those in a more advanced stage improve while attention, and an important discussion was introduced by there, frequently relapsing afterwards; and that those who Dr. Dawson Williams (London), who, by means of several are badly diseased ought not to be sent at all. Is that, tables illustrating a series of observations on the height and after all, to say much more than might be said of sensible weight of boys in primary schools, showed that after the treatment before the erection of sanatoriums?
eighth year of age the weight of boys of the artisan "Can we, again, eliminate the predisposing influence of classes was very much below the average, this fact being heredity? Actual tubercle may not be inherited, but the more noticeable in the lowest grade schools. The same poor constitutional soil inviting and suiting the bacillus remarks applied to the height of boys, though in a less still passes from parent to child; and we do not get rid degree. The first striking statement about physical of the essential fact by changing the name.
degeneration was made some years ago by Mr. J. Cantlie, indeed, in the end get such a valuable addition to the life- who challenged any person to produce a Londoner of the capital of the nation? It is easy enough, noting that some fourth generation. This challenge had
been 60,000 consumptives die annually in England and Wales- answered. Dr. Dawson Williams attributed this physical I do not vouch for the figures-fancifully to rate the value deterioration to various causes, among which he mentioned of each life at an arbitrary figure and then by multiplica- | -improper feeding in infancy; the fact that among the tion to make an appalling computation of the loss to the poorer classes mothers worked hard almost up to the time community ; but is the loss so real? Might not the ulti- of their confinement; intemperance in fathers, which was mate cost to the commonwealth be greater were these said by French authorities to be more injurious to the persons to go on living and breeding in it? An addition children than maternal intemperance; and the practice of to the nation's life-capital is all very well, but the quality | large numbers of children in London sitting out of doors of the capital counts for a good deal, and it will not count until midnight, which involved a great expenditure of for much if it is not realisable. What does the realisation nervous energy. amount to in practice? The patient who comes out of the Mr. William Hall (Leeds), in a paper on the influence sanatorium recovered or improved must usually go back to of environment on physical development, said that fifty his former work and surroundings; he cannot adapt the years ago the slum mother was much more sober, cleanly, world to the weakness of his nature and its ideal needs, and domestic than she was to-day. She better but, like other mortals, must adapt himself to the rude nourished herself, always suckled her children, and after world and perforce do much as they do. That is what he weaning them gave them nutritious bone-making food, quite naturally does; returns to his work and his old which she prepared at home. This had all been done away ways, perhaps gets married if he is not married, and with by our elaborate education system, costing 20,000,000l. begets children who can hardly have the confidence of a yearly. Children were now fed on cheap stale food, well good descent. Meanwhile, when he relapses, he sows seasoned with condiments, which educated them for the bacilli broadcast, thus multiplying such life-capital to fulfil love of stimulants in later life and produced also a tendency its ordained function in the universe, that apparently to scurvy, rickets, and purpura. A little while ago he had being to make away with weak mortality."
examined more than 100 adult skeletons in the crypt of The address in surgery by Mr. C. J. Bond, surgeon Hythe Church, where they had lain for several centuries. to the Leicester Infirmary, dealt with ascending currents He was struck by the fact that the bones were small but in mucous canals and gland ducts. The results of a not rickety, the bony palates not much vaulted and the number of experiments proved that by some
alveolar arches regular, and the teeth that remained were other, and under certain conditions, particles of an in- good. It had been said truly that there were hundreds soluble substance, such as indigo, inserted into the orifices and thousands of our countrymen now living whose of a mucous canal or duct are conveyed along the mucous skeletons, if preserved, would some day show highly channel in a reverse direction to that taken by the con- vaulted bony palates, contracted alveolar arches, anterior tents of the tube, or by the secretion or excretion of the protrusion of the upper jaws, the remains of unsound glands along such ducts. The conditions which seem to teeth, and abundant general signs of rickety bony framefavour this passage are-some interference with
the work. It was remarkable that Jewish children in the normal flow of the contents of the mucous tube or duct; slums were superior to Christian children in physical some arrest or diversion of secretion, such as is produced development, which was due to the fact that the pregnant by a fistulous opening, though it is by no means necessary Jewess was better cared for, that 90 per cent of the that this should be complete.
infants were fed on breast-milk, and that during later In the section of medicine an interesting discussion on childhood they abundantly fed bone-making the treatment of sleeplessness was opened by Sir Lauder material. Eggs and oil, fish, fresh vegetables, and fruit Brunton. Many of the speakers dwelt on the importance entered largely into their diet. Yet the Jews had not been of indigestion and of high arterial tension in inducing taught to safeguard their pregnant wives and to nourish sleeplessness, and Dr. Collier (Oxford) considered that their growing children by the instructors in the modern much of the present day insomnia might be referred to and costly State education which they were told at Oxford over-education, especially in preparing for scholarships, the was to be at the root of everything. successful competitors often suffering after the age of nine- Prof. R. J. Anderson (Queen's College, Galway) reteen years from nervous failure and insomnia. He thought marked that he thought it would be a most important that the occasional employment of narcotics was of value thing to secure a complete anthropometric survey of the in breaking a vicious circle before the habit of sleeplessness whole of the British Isles. He doubted if improper food was established.
was the chief cause of physical deterioration, because, in his In the section of State medicine an important discussion! opinion, food had of late years greatly improved in quality,
Mr. W. D. Spanton (Leeds) considered that the most Sir John Eliot, of Bon Porto, Cavalaire, formerly meteorprominent causes of physical degeneration were-efforts to ological reporter to the Government of India, secretary. rear premature and diseased infants, absurd educational It was resolved to add the names of MM, Max Woll, high pressure, cigarette smoking in the younger gener- Scheiner, Julius, and Wolfer to the commission if they ation, and late hours at night; in fact, the love of pleasure, should be willing to serve. and ergophobia in all classes of society. He considered At the next meeting the name of Sir Arthur Rücker was that there was too much cheap philanthropy, that life added to the commission. was made too easy for the young poor, and that by The following question was considered : modern educational methods proper parental discipline was " (1) The selection of (a) meteorological, and (b) mag. rendered almost impossible.
netic elements, which should be collated for the purpose Mrs. F. M. Dickinson Berry (London) said that in of comparison with solar observations, and the form in her opinion children in London schools were not underfed which the observations might be presented with the greatest so much as improperly fed, and that they preferred to eat advantage for the purposes of comparison. The prepar. bread and pickles, dried fish, &c., and had to be forced ation of a list of meteorological and magnetic observatories to eat a proper dinner. She quite endorsed Mr. Hall's which should be asked to contribute observations for the remarks about Jewish children.
purpose. In the section of pathology, a discussion on the relation- It was resolved ship of heredity to disease was opened by the president, (1) That, in the first instance, for the purpose of com. Dr. Mott (London), in an interesting and suggestive paper. parison with solar phenomena, the meteorological observHe exhibited charts of hereditary hæmophilia and ataxy ations to be considered should be monthly means of with statistics of longevity, presenility, psychoses, and pressure, rainfall and temperature (including maximum neuroses bearing on these and other diseases.
temperature and minimum temperature). Mr. Charles Bond contributed a paper on
(2) That the members of the commission be requested lation and disease, with special reference to deaf-mutism. to communicate to the secretary a short report on the While deaf-mutism occurs almost equally in males and data available in their respective countries, and the number females, in any given family the incidence is almost limited
of years over which they extend. to the members of one sex, and when members of both (3) That the members of the commission be requested to sexes in one family suffered the births were either twin make suggestions with regard to additional stations from or contiguous.
which it is desirable that data should be obtained in view Mr. Č. Hurst described experiments on the correlation of the comparison of solar and terrestrial data. of sex.
When black and yellow cats were crossed, all (4) That the secretary be requested to consult Dr. Chree male kittens were yellow, all female kittens tortoiseshell, as to the stations from which magnetic data are at present but in the second generation the colours were uniformly available, and to refer to a paper by Prof. von Bezold as distributed between the two sexes.
to additional magnetic stations from which information is In the section of tropical diseases, an important paper desirable, and to circulate the information among the on human tick fever in the Congo Free State by Dr. Todd members of the commission, it being understood that the and the late Mr. Everett Dutton was read.
data appropriate for the purposes of comparison are clusions arrived at were :-(1) that tick fever is clinically monthly means of the three magnetic elements for the identical with relapsing fever, and has for a pathogenic | quiet days and data as to magnetic storms. agent a spirillum ; (2) the spirillum is probably the Spiro- A letter from Prof. Hale was laid before the commission. chaete Obermeieri ; (3) a tick, the Ornithodorus monbata, At the third meeting the questions of the selection of can transmit the spirillum from animal to animal ; (4) the meteorological stations and of the establishment of transmission is probably not simply mechanical, but a additional meteorological stations were again considered, developmental cycle is passed in the body of the tick. and it was resolved that the members of the commission
In the naval and military section, Fleet-Surgeon Bead- should hand in their list of selected stations to the secrenell read an interesting paper on some dynamical and
tary after the close of the British Association meeting, and hydrodynamical effects of the modern small-bore bullet, in that it would be desirable that observations should be which he claimed that the so-called "explosive” effects obtained from two stations in the Pacific. The stations of the modern bullet were due to sudden enlargement of selected were Tahiti and Numea, to be established by the the “impact area " resulting from a modification either French Meteorological Bureau. in the form or in the motion of the projectile. Many of The name of Mr. A. L. Rotch was added to the com. the “ explosive" phenomena were due to eccentricities of mission. Aight such
the various spinning-top and The letter riceived from Prof. Hale suggesting cooperpirouetting motions of the bullet.
ation of the commission with the committee on solar An invitation to hold the annual meeting of the British research of the National Academy of Sciences was read. Medical Association next year in Toronto was cordially It was resolved that the commission thank Prof. Hale for accepted.
his letter, and express their desire to cooperate with the committee on solar research of the National Academy of
Sciences on questions of common interest. SOLAR AND TERRESTRIAL CHANGES.
Mr. Rotch was requested to communicate this resolution
personally to Prof. Hale at the conference at St. Louis. IN a recent article we referred to the formation of an The question of the selection of solar observations for the
International Commission to deal with the important comparison of data was taken into consideration. question of the possible action of solar changes on the A scheme prepared by Messrs. Riccò and W. J. S. earth's atmosphere. We stated that a meeting is to be Lockyer was read and provisionally approved. held at Innsbruck in September. We are now enabled to (1) Suggested observations of the sun for direction, give some details of the meeting at Cambridge last year. intensity, and amplitude of " boiling of the limb."
The members assembled in the Old Library of Pem- Present observations :broke College on Thursday, August 18, and letters were Twenty years' observations made in Palermo and read from the following :-Prof. H. H. Hildebrandsson, Catania, and (?) many years' observations in Madrid. Prof. H. Mohn, General M. Rykatcheff, Prof. G. Hell- (2) Number, area, and position of spots. Existing mann, Dr. A. Paulsen, Hofrath J. M. Pernter, Prof. S. P. arrangements suffice. Langley, M. A. Angot, Prof. J. Violle, Prof. J. Hann, (3) For visual observations of prominences on limb, it is Mr. A. S. Steen, Prof. W. Köppen, Prof. A. Ricco, Prof. suggested that America or Japan be invited to contribute. G. E. Hale, Prof. F. H. Bigelow, Mr. W. G. Davis, Prof. (Places widely separated in longitude required.) K. Ångström, Mr. A. R. Hinks.
Monthly values of the percentage frequency of prominThe members present proceeded to the election of a ences for every 5° of latitude north and south. president and secretary, and it was unanimously resolved (4) Sun-spot spectra. that Sir Norman Lockyer, director of the Solar Physics Available observations are taken at the Solar Physics Observatory, South Kensington, be elected president, and Observatory, South Kensington; Poona in India ; Stone
hurst in England; and Kodaikanal in India ; and are Observatory), for tabulation and comparison. The comsufficient for the present.
mission attaches the greatest importance to this work, (5) Spectroheliograph.
more especially as it may lead to a practical system of Kensington,
long-period forecasting, and hopes that if it be necessary, (1) “ Discs ” in “K” light
an increase of staff at that observatory may be authorised Kodaikanal,
to bring all old observations up to date. Catania (later).
The commission, after a vote of thanks to the presi(2) “Limb " in " K " light
dent, adjourned sine die.
The commission has circulated in the appendix to its At the fourth meeting further consideration was given
report much valuable correspondence, but we have not to the question of the solar observations which it is
space to refer to it. desirable should be collected for the purposes of com- With regard to the Innsbruck meeting, the following parison.
members of the commission are expected to be present : (1) It was resolved, that in connection with the observ
M. A. Angot, Bureau Central Météorologique, Paris; Prof. ations of solar radiation, observations of the transparency H. J. Ångström, University, Upsala ; Prof. F. H. Bigeof the air should be made, more especially
low, Weather Bureau, Washington; Prof. Birkeland, (a) on the visibility of distant and high mountains University of Christiania; Rev. P. R. Cirera, S.J., when possible ;
Observatorio del Ebro, Tortosa, Spain ; Dr. W. G. Davis, (b) photometrical observations of Polaris.
Oficina Meteorologica Argentina, Cordoba, Argentine
Republic ; M. Deslandres, Observatoire (2) It was resolved that a circular be addressed to the
d'Astronomie various meteorological organisations, asking them to send
Physique, Meudon, Seine et Oise ; Sir John Eliot (secreto the secretary for the purposes of the commission a copy
tary), 54 Prince of Wales Mansions, Prince of Wales of the publications of their offices embodying the data
Road, Battersea, and Bon Porto, Cavalaire, Var, France ; specified in resolution of August 19, and that the organisa
Prof. G. E. Hale, 678 St. John Avenue, Pasadena, Cali
fornia, U.S.A. ; Hofrat Prof. J. Hann, XIX Hohe Warte, tions be also requested to obtain and forward copies of similar publications from the colonies and dependencies of
Vienna ; M. Janssen, Observatoire d'Astronomie Physique, their respective countries.
Meudon, Seine et Oise ; Prof. W. H. Julius, Rijks
Universiteit, Utrecht, Holland ; Prof. (3) It was resolved that a circular should be sent in
W. Köppen, the following terms :-The commission desire to direct
Deutche Seewarte, Holland; Prof. S. P. Langley, secreattention to the concluding paragraphs of Prof. Violle's
tary of the Smithsonian Institution, Washington; Sir report to the International Meteorological Committee 1903,
Norman Lockyer (President), Solar Physics Observatory, and would be greatly obliged if the commission could be
South Kensington; Dr. W. J. S. Lockyer, Solar Physics informed of the arrangements for observing solar radi
Observatory, South Kensington; Hofrat Prof. J. M. ation adopted at the observatories of the various meteor
Pernter, Hohe Warte, Vienna, Austria ; Prof. Riccò, ological organisations and the methods employed to render
University de Catania, Sicily, Italy; Prof. G. B. Rizzo, the observations comparable with those of other observ
University of Messina, Sicily, Italy; Prof. L. A. Rotch, atories.
Blue Hill Meteorological Observatory, Cambridge, Mass.;
Sir Arthur Rücker, 19 Gledhow Gardens, S.W.; Prof. (4) Mr. Shaw reported that an apparatus for recording J. Scheiner, Königl. Friedrich Wilhelms Universität, solar radiation was in process of being established, and tested at the Cambridge Observatory, and that Mr. W. E.
Berlin ; Dr. W. N. Shaw, Meteorological Office, 63 Victoria
Street, Westminster; Prof. A. Steen, Meteorological InstiWilson, of Daramona, who had presented the apparatus to the observatory, had promised a note upon the apparatus
tute, Christiania ; Prof. J. Violle, Conservatoire des Arts for the information of the commission.
et Métiers, Paris; Prof. C. H. Wind, University of
Utrecht, Holland ; Prof. A. Woeikoff, St. Petersburg, At the fifth meeting the question of the magnetic observ
Russia: Herrn Prof. Max Wolf, Grossherz Ruprechtations for the purposes of comparison was taken into
Karls Universität, Heidelberg, Germany; Prof. A. Wölfer, consideration. It was resolved in connection therewith :
Zurich Observatory, Switzerland. That the establishment of magnetical observatories in about lat. 70° N. (e.g. Bosskop in Norway) and in very high latitudes of the southern hemisphere is of the highest
THE TEACHING OF PRACTICAL CHEMISTRY importance for the advancement of science.
AND PHYSICS.1 Prof. Riccò informed the commission that it is intended to establish in Italy or Sicily a magnetic observatory with DE
R. FISCHER has set himself the almost limitless task self-recording instruments belonging to the Italian Meteor
of describing and comparing the various methods of ological Office.
science teaching adopted by the principal nations of the The secretary was directed to ascertain from the members
world, but he has succeeded in collecting a good deal of of the commission whether they consider it desirable that a
useful and accurate information, which he has given in a meeting should be held at Innsbruck next year (1905).
concise and interesting form. It was also resolved that the secretary should report to
He deals with the present state of the teaching of physies the International Meteorological Committee the proceed
and chemistry in Germany, Austria, Hungary, Italy, ings of the meetings of the commission held here, and
France, Sweden, Norway, Holland, Russia, Finland, Great ask that the proper steps be taken to bring before the
Britain, Ireland, and the United States of America. In International Association of Academies their suggestions
each instance he not only describes the methods of instrucrelating to Government action.
tion now prevailing, but in a few words indicates the Letters from Messrs. Bigelow and Davis were read. It
gradual way in which all branches of science are slowly was resolved that Prof. Pernter's letter should be trans
but surely obtaining a recognised place in education. lated and given in the proceedings.
The chief point dealt with in connection with the teachProf. Ricco informed the meeting that he had been
ing of physics and chemistry is the establishment of praccharged by Prof. Rizzo to say that he will willingly
tical classes for students in the secondary and other schools. undertake to carry out any investigation the commission
In this Great Britain, Ireland, and America are far ahead may be pleased to entrust to him, and it was resolved that
of the other countries. In Germany, at the present time, Prof. Rizzo should be thanked for his offer, and that a
comparatively few schools, especially in South Germany, written communication be addressed to him later.
have laboratories where the pupils themselves can carry It was agreed that all communications for the com
out experiments in chemistry and physics. Where such mission should be received at a central address, viz. the
practical work has been allowed, it has elicited much Solar Physics Observatory, South Kensington.
interest from the pupils, even when the classes have had It was further resolved that
1 Abhandlungen zur Didaktik und Philosophie der Naturwissenschaft. The commission considers it is desirable that the data
Heft 3. “ Der naturwissenschaftliche Unterricht bei uns und im Auslande.
By Dr. Karl T. Fischer. Pp. 72. Price 2 marks. Heft 4. "Wie sind for the purposes of comparison should be sent to the presi
die physikalischen Schülerübungen praktisch zu gestalten?". By Hero dent of the commission, South Kensington (Solar Physics Oberlehrer Habn. Pp. 67. Price 2 marks. (Berlin : Julius Springer, 1905.)
to be held outside the proper school-hours. At the German a rule, work at about the same speed, it is possible to put universities, however, laboratory instruction began re- the whole class at the same experiment; usually one finds, latively early, and now stands on a high level compared however, it is only the most elementary apparatus that with other countries. In Austria, science teaching has can be stocked on so extensive a scale. been considerably developed, but practical classes have not Various other questions are gone into, such as the yet been introduced. In Italy, laboratories for the students writing-up of note-books in the laboratory, the supplement at the secondary schools are still unknown, but in France ing of laboratory work by demonstrations, the training of they have been building school laboratories for practical teachers, &c. From the numerous extracts and foot-notes, work throughout the country
since the official one observes that Prof. Hahn has made a most careful and regulations of 1902.
thorough digest of all the existing English and American In Sweden, the time devoted to natural science is now literature bearing on this branch of science teaching, being increased ; scholars can, in most cases, carry out The second part deals with laboratories and their fittings, experiments in chemistry, but practical work in physics and is illustrated with a number of drawings of fittings, is almost unknown in the secondary schools belonging to small but clearly executed. These, apparently, are all the State. In Norway, there are no secondary school taken from other books ; in fact, about half of them have laboratories, although natural science is compulsory. Then been reproduced from an English work-Russell's again, in Holland, the secondary schools have no practical Planning of Chemical and Physical Laboratories." Alter classes, but the study of physics there is carried further some introductory remarks on the size and arrangement of than even in Germany. In Russia, science laboratories suitable rooms, a description is given of each of the fittings are being introduced with considerable success. Until two
separately, beginning with the simple work-bench for years ago, physics was the only scientific subject taught in physical laboratories in schools. The ideal is considered the secondary schools, but since then botany and zoology to be a bench made to accommodate one worker only, or have been added. The experience gained in Russia in con- two in cases of necessity, but it is pointed out that this is nection with laboratory work has been favourable, in spite too extravagant of floor-space and money to be really of many hampering circumstances. Several recently erected practicable. Details of the arrangement, construction, and school-buildings have physical departments which have material of the work-benches are briefly discussed. All been built regardless of cost; the Physical Institute at the other fittings usually provided are described, and some St. Petersburg has cost about a million marks, and a still useful information is given concerning the actual room larger one is being built at Moscow.
itself, schemes for heating and ventilating, the supplyDr. Fischer has already shown by his book, " Der pipes, &c. naturwissenschaftliche Unterricht in England," that he Again, one notices that a diligent search has been made has an intimate knowledge of English methods of education. for English, American, and German books and papers dealHis book was the outcome of a visit to this country. ing with the fitting-up of laboratories ; from these much
In treating of the teaching of science in the United information and data have been extracted and compared. States of America, reference is made to the alterations in The search, however, has as usual been most unpro. the curriculum of a great number of schools, necessitated ductive; one finds in the list of literature merely some five by the recent regulation that previous experience in prac- English books and magazine articles, together with two tical physics and chemistry is essential before being American and three German ones. admitted Harvard University and the Lawrence Although only a general survey has been attempted of the Scientific School.
arrangement and equipment of school laboratories, it would Finally, various details relating to the universities, probably be difficult to find a more complete abstract on technical, medical, and other schools in the countries this subject, and the pamphlet contains much information previously enumerated are given in tabular form; this which will prove useful to those who are fitting-up clearly shows the rapid progress instruction in practical laboratories. physics has made during the last thirty years. The illustrations include plans and views of laboratories in Munich, Hamburg, Rotterdam, Meppel, Alkmaar, London, &c.
STANDARDISATION IN PHARMACY:! Although space permits of only a very brief reference to some of the principal points dealt with, it is enough to
The principle of standardisation and its embodiment in
daily practice marks the most important advance indicate that this pamphlet can hardly fail to interest and which pharmacy has witnessed within recent years. to be of use to those who are concerned in the teaching Standardisation as applied to a crude drug or a preparof chemistry and physics.
ation is understood to imply that by a method of approThe pamphlet by Herr H. Hahn, entitled “ Wie sind die physikalischen Schülerübungen praktisch zu gestalten?”
priate treatment ascertained by direct experiment it has like that by Dr. Fischer, is one of the separate parts
been made to conform to a predetermined standard. The issued, from time to time, by the well known Zeitschrift
required standard may have a physical, chemical, or physio
logical basis, and may have reference either to one or für den physikalischen u. chemischen Unterricht.
more definite principles or to a mixture of indefinable subHerr Hahn is undoubtedly one of the many teachers of
The object of standardisation is to science in Germany who are convinced that the time has
uniformity of product, more especially in respect of now come to introduce the practical teaching of physics medicinal activity. It is not necessary to hark back more into all schools throughout the German Empire. He is
than a generation to see the ever-lengthening strides which endeavouring to attract attention to this subject by de- pharmacy has taken in the direction of plant analysis and scribing what has been, and is_being, done in other
the isolation of definite principles. To this fact the textcountries, more particularly in England and America. books on materia medica and lectures of twenty-five years This is probably the best way of refuting the objections of
ago bear indisputable testimony. Then the maximum of those who oppose this advance.
knowledge of the constituents of many of even the best The first portion is devoted to suggestions as to the best known and most potent drugs was summed up in the methods of conducting practical physics classes in schools statement that they contained a crystalline principle, and to the aim of such work. It is pointed out that generally an alkaloid, and a few remotely proximate and formerly the object was merely to impart knowledge, but chemically unclassified substances. Before standardisation that now it is to show the pupil the way he has to set could be brought within the range of pharmaceutical possiabout to acquire knowledge for himself, to confirm laws
bility it was necessary to make a more thorough systematic which are known to him, and also to discover those of which he is as yet unaware.
and accurate investigation of crude drugs, with a view Much rational advice is
of obtaining precise information as to the nature of their given regarding the management of practical classes ; constituents. special stress is laid upon the advisability of avoiding the To this task the younger generation of workers in the use of unnecessarily elaborate and expensive apparatus, and field of pharmaceutical research have mainly directed their of attempting, when possible, to go back to the simple and
efforts. Latterly they have occupied themselves more ingenious means by which a law was first discovered by one of the great men of science. The author advocates
1 Abridged from the Presidential Address delivered by Mr W. A. H.
Naylor before the British Pharmaceutical Conference at Brighton on students working singly, and argues that, as all boys, as