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Mr. Buckton dedicated his first book, "British Aphides," to Thomas Bell, a friend of more than forty years' standing" (in 1876), whose sympathy and encouragement had given him a taste for natural history. During the earlier part of his life Mr. Buckton resided in or near London, when his attention was given more to physical than to natural science; and he served as assistant to Prof. A. W. Hofmann at the Royal College of Chemistry. From 1845 to 1865 he published several important papers on chemical subjects (a list of which will be found in the Royal Society's Catalogue of Papers) in the Journal of the Chemical Society, the Proceedings of the Royal Society, and elsewhere; and his earliest published paper on any entomological subject appears to have been "On the Application of Cyanide of Potassium to killing Insects for the Cabinet," published in the Zoologist for 1854, cyanide compounds having been one of his favourite studies during his chemical researches. In the following year (1855) he published a short paper on bats in the second volume of the Proceedings of the Linnean Society.
He was a Fellow of the Linnean Society (1845), the Chemical Society (1852), the Royal Society (1857), and the Entomological Society (1883), and was also a member of the Entomological Society of France, a corresponding member of the Royal Academy of Sciences of Philadelphia, &c. He took great interest in these societies, attending their meetings as far as he was able, and occasionally serving on their councils; he also travelled in Italy, France, and other Continental countries, as well as in the British Islands.
In 1865 Mr. Buckton published one of the last of his chemical papers, in conjunction with Prof. W. Odling, whose daughter, Mary Ann, he married in the same year. He then settled at Haslemere, Surrey, for the remainder of his life, where he had purchased the estate at Weycombe, and built himself a house after his own design, with an observatory.
From the time of his residence at Haslemere, Mr. Buckton devoted much of his time to entomology. He formed a collection of Lepidoptera, but paid more attention to the British Homoptera, being much assisted by his children, whom he brought up in the same tastes as his own. He wrote comparatively little in the entomological journals, but published a series of very important entomological monographs from 1876 to 1905, chiefly relating to the somewhat neglected order Homoptera, which will not soon be superseded. They may here be enumerated:-1876 1883, "Monograph of British Aphides (Ray Society), 4 vols., comprising upwards of 750 pages of letterpress, 9 plain and 134 coloured plates; 1890 1891, "Monograph of British Cicada or Tettigidæ (Macmillan), 2 vols., comprising 426 pages of letterpress, 7 plain and 75 coloured plates; 1895, "The Natural History of Eristalis Tenax, or the DroneFly" (Macmillan), 1 vol., pp. vii+88, with 1 coloured and 8 plain plates. This work is illustrative of the story of Samson and the Bees. 1901-1903, “A Monograph of the Membracidæ " (Lovell Reeve), 6 parts, comprising upwards of 300 pages of letterpress, and I plain and 60 coloured plates. Mr.
Buckton's last publication was a supplementary paper to this work, comprising 10 pages of letterpress and 2 coloured plates, forming vol. xi., part ix., of the Transactions of the Linnean Society, second series, zoology, and dated July, 1905.
The illustrations to Mr. Buckton's works were all drawn, and the pattern plates coloured, by himself. Some of his plates were even lithographed by himself, and most, if not all, of those which were handcoloured were coloured by himself or his daughters.
The original drawings for the work on Membracidæ have been presented to the Hope Museum at Oxford. Mr. Buckton kept his genial force and vitality to the end; "his eye was not dimmed, nor his natural force abated. His last illness was of brief duration. and the end was very calm and peaceful. His ashes, after cremation, were deposited in a grave lined with ivy leaves in Haslemere Churchyard on Saturday September 30. W. F. KIRBY.
We regret to see the announcement that Ferdinand Baron von Richthofen, professor of geography in the University of Berlin, died on October 7 in his seventsthird year.
THE sixth annual Huxley memorial lecture of the Anthropological Institute will be delivered on Tuedar, October 31, in the rooms of the Society of Arts, by Dr. John Beddoe, F.R.S., the subject being "Colour and
A JOINT meeting of the Royal Society and the Royal Astronomical Society will be held in the rooms of the Royal Society on Thursday next, October 19, at 4.30 o'clock, to receive preliminary reports on the observations of the recent solar eclipse. It is expected that reports wil. be presented by the Astronomer Royal, Prof. H. L Callendar, Mr. J. Evershed, Mr. H. F. Newall, Prot H. H. Turner, and others.
THE annual fungus foray' of the Essex Field Club will be held at High Beach, Epping Forest, on Saturday next, October 14; referee, Mr. George Massee, of Key Museum. Any botanists wishing to attend should communicate with the hon. secretaries of the club, Buckhurst Hill, Essex.
THE death is announced of the Rev. S. J. Johnson Ji his residence, Melplash Vicarage, near Bridport, Un October 9. Mr. Johnson was well known in astronomical circles for his writings upon eclipses and other astronomical matters. He was a Fellow of the Royd Astronomical Society for more than thirty-three years.
SIR EDWARD H. CARBUTT, the eminent mechanica
engineer, died suddenly at his residence near Guildford on October 8 at the age of sixty-eight years. He was past-president of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, and a vice-president of the Iron and Steel Institute. He was an active member of the board of the National Physical Laboratory, and represented the Iron and Sterl Institute on the departmental committee on the Royal College of Science and Royal School of Mines. He als represented the Iron and Steel Institute on the Institution of Civil Engineers' committee to formulate a scheme of education for engineers.
THE Municipal Museum at Hull recently acquired a valuable addition to its collection of local Roman an other remains. The specimens are principally of Roman date, and include more than 2000 coins, nearly 100 fibult of a great variety of patterns, several dozen buckles, pins dress fasteners, ornaments, strap ends, bosses, spint whorls, armlets, spoons, beads, and other objects. Amo the fibulæ are two of exceptional interest, as they bra the maker's name upon them (Avcissa). There is als a extensive collection of pottery, including many strainers, dishes, &c., in grey ware, as well as many f pieces of Samian ware, several of which contain th potters' marks.
Ar the meeting of the Institution of Civil Engineers on Tuesday, November 7, an inaugural address will be delivered by the president, Sir Alexander R. Binnie, and the council's awards will be presented. In addition to the medals and prizes given for communications discussed at the meetings of the institution in the last session, the council of the institution has made the following awards in respect of other papers dealt with in 1904-5-a George Stephenson medal to Captain H. R. Sankey, R.E., a Watt medal to Dr. C. Chree, F.R.S.; Telford premiums to Messrs. W. E. W. Millington, C. E. Stromeyer, C. W. Hill, F. C. Lea, W. B. Cole, W. C. Popplewell, E. H. Rigby, and W. O. Leitch, jun. For students' papers the awards are:-Miller prizes to Messrs. A. B. Potts, W. M. Hayman, R. E. Bury, T. Lees, jun., T. L. Matthews, P. J. Risdon, and F. E. Tudor.
THE organisation and methods of the Japanese Naval Medical Service recently formed the subject of a communication by Surgeon-General Suzuki to the Association of Military Surgeons at Detroit. Much of the success achieved in the treatment of wounds was ascribed to a regulation requiring every member of the crew of a warship before battle to bathe and dress in perfectly clean underclothing. During engagements a 1 per cent. solution of boric acid was provided to wash the eyes free from powder, smoke, and dust, and cotton-wool plugs for the ears were issued to every man. It was impracticable during action to attempt anything but the most necessary first dressing of wounds, and after action, wherever possible, the wounded were hurried to the base hospital, and only the absolutely essential operations performed on the spot.
RECENT issues of the Proceedings of the Philadelphia Academy include two papers on polychætous annelids from the North Pacific by Mr. J. P. Moore, and notes on Hawaiian land shells of the families Achatinellidæ and Endodontidae by Messrs. Pilsbry and Vanatta.
AN addition to the useful little guides to the contents of the Horniman Museum at Forest Hill has been issued by the London County Council in the form of "Handbook to the Marine Aquaria," and offered for sale, like all its fellows, for one penny. The handbook commences with an account of the manner in which such receptacles may be made and stocked, followed by notes on some of the common animals which may be kept therein.
WE have received part ii. of the ninth volume of the Transactions of the Leicester Literary and Philosophical Society, containing the report of the council for the past year. Several lectures, of some of which brief abstracts are published, were delivered during the period under review, and the council reports not only an increased attendance at these lectures on the part of the public, but likewise a successful session as a whole.
A SMALL case has been placed on one of the walls in the central hall of the Natural History Museum for the purpose of showing that the habit of depositing its eggs in the nests of other birds is not confined to the common cuckoo, and that some kinds of cuckoos hatch their own eggs. Among the series is an egg of a cow-bird among a clutch of eggs of a tyrant-bird. In this case the dissimiliarity between the eggs of the two species is very marked but in a clutch of magpies' eggs among which is an egg of the great south European cuckoo semblance is marvellously close.
To the October issue of Bird Notes and News Dr. E. A. Wilson, late naturalist on the Discovery, contributes an interesting note on penguins, especially with regard to the wholesale destruction of these birds in certain districts for the sake of their oil. As regards the Antarctic species, which are at present unmolested, the author is of opinion that the emperor penguin is secure from attack during the breeding-season, although at other times of the year its destruction could be encompassed, as could that of the Adélie penguin at all seasons. Articles on the protected breeding resorts of gulls and terns in Lancashire and Lincolnshire are included in this number.
THE early history of that exterminated race the Morioris of the Chatham Islands forms the subject of two papers in the Transactions of the New Zealand Institute for 1904. The author of one of these is of opinion that there was an immigration of Polynesians into New Zealand antecedent to the arrival of the Maories, and it is suggested that the Morioris came among these earlier voyagers. Among a number of zoological papers in the same volume reference may be made to three by Prof. Benham on the earthworms of New Zealand and the Kermadecs, in the course of one of which the author requests that observers will forward specimens from all parts of that area. Attention is directed by Archdeacon Walsh to the alleged existence in New Zealand of an undescribed lizard or salamander. To the geological section Captain Hutton communicates three papers, one on the formation of the Canterbury plains, a second on certain new Tertiary shells, and a third on the Tertiary brachiopods.
"THE CAMBRIAN FAUNA OF CHINA" forms the title of a paper by Mr. C. D. Walcott constituting No. 1415 of the Proceedings of the U.S. National Museum (vol. xxix., pp. 1-106). The existence of Cambrian fossils in China was announced in 1883 by Baron von Richthofen, while other specimens were described in 1899. Two years ago the Carnegie Institution of Washington dispatched an expedition for the purpose of obtaining a representative collection of these fossils, and the paper before us is a preliminary account of the collection then made. The fossils of this epoch in China have proved to be extraordinarily abundant, as is indicated by the circumstance that imperfect specimens are scarcely taken into account in this preliminary notice. Brachiopods and trilobites appear to be the dominant forms, and it is confidently expected by the author that important results will follow thorough and systematic exploration and collecting.
Two out of the three articles in the September issue of the American Naturalist are of a somewhat technical nature, and interesting to the specialist rather than the general naturalist. In the first Mr. H. Crawley discusses the complex question of the interrelations of the parasitic protozoans of the group Sporozoa, as typified by the gregarines; while in the second Mr. F. C. Baker describes the reproductive organs of the pond-snails of the genus Limnæa. In the third and more popular article Miss Worthington supplies a large amount of information with regard to the life-history of hag-fishes, or myxinoids. These fishes abound in Monterey Bay, where they are taken on the rock-cod beds at a depth of about 300 feet. They live curled around and between the rocks, and when in health always assume a coiled position. Although they will stand much rough treatment, a decided rise of temperature proves fatal. They do much damage by stripping the flesh off fish hooked on the lines. In feeding, the tooth-plate is thrust out of the mouth, with its
two halves divergent, and the flat surface pressed against the fish and the two halves brought together, thereby tearing off a piece of flesh, which is withdrawn into the mouth.
In part i. of the fifth volume of the Proceedings of the Rhodesia Scientific Association are contained three papers by the president, Mr. Franklin White. Two of these are descriptions of ruins; the more important paper deals with Zimbabwe on the same lines as the more detailed account in the next issue of the Journal of the Anthropological Institute; the illustrations are different. Mr. White's very careful survey shows that many of the data on which have been based theories as to the age and use of the ruins are untrustworthy, and it is unfortunate for him that the negative results of his really sound work have now been overshadowed by the more positive contributions of Mr. MacIver's excavations. The third paper deals with bushman cave paintings near Matopos, and is of interest as showing their occurrence in an area outside that allotted to the "painters" in Stow's recent work; the paintings are reproduced in four coloured plates. Other illustrations in this part show the Lumene and Umnukwane ruins. Few local societies do more useful work than does the Rhodesian Scientific Association, and its Proceedings do it great credit.
IN the Naturwissenschaftliche Wochenschrift for August 13 will be found a résumé of our knowledge of carpospore formation in the red seaweeds, which formed the subject of an address by Dr. F. Tobler to the Gesellschaft naturforschender Freunde of Berlin. The article, which deals with the work of Oltmanns and his predecessors, is illustrated with a selection of their figures.
IN 1879 Prof. F. C. Schubeler, of Christiania, published some conclusions which he had formed regarding the greater productiveness and quicker ripening qualities of grain sown in northerly districts or on highlands as compared with that sown further south or on lowlands. These conclusions were not without value, as they directed attention to the matter, but Prof. N. Wille questions their accuracy in the Biologisches Centralblatt (September 1). Data compiled by Mr. L. P. Nilssen for different Norwegian districts tend rather to show that crops take longer to ripen near the sea than further inland.
THE pages of the Indian Forester contain a number of useful short notes and letters contributed by officers of the Indian Forest Department, in which they record their experiences and exchange opinions. In the July number Mr. W. Mayes describes a disastrous outbreak of Trametes pini in the forests of Pinus excelsa in the Simla division; he proposes to replace the diseased poles with deodar, which is believed to be immune to this fungus. A simple but effective method of holding shifting sands by planting thorn hedges is described by Mr. L. Das. The subject of fire protection in teak forests has elicited various pressions of opinion.
THE report of the industrial section of the Indian Museum, Calcutta, for the year 1904-5 has been received from the acting superintendent, Mr. Hooper. Among the recent additions to the economic section, the fragrant resin or balsam furnished by Altingia excelsa, the dammar-resin secreted by the Melipona or mosquito bee-both products of Burma-and a white resin from Assam, yielded by Dipterocarpus pilosus, are of special interest, and have been examined in the laboratory. From Burma specimens
have also been sent to the art ware and ethnological sections, but the latter has been augmented principally by collections from Nepal and Tibet of musical instruments, articles of warfare, and personal ornaments.
ALTHOUGH at first glance the disposition of the Lower Paleozoic strata of the Island of Montreal, dipping at a very gentle angle away from the Laurentian plateau, might appear to promise a constant source of artesian water, the mineral character of the rocks forbids this. They are chiefly massive limestones, and the underground water travels along fissures and not in any special waterbearing beds, so that the success or failure of a boring cannot be foretold. Such is the conclusion reached by Prof. Adams and Mr. Leroy from a study of eighty-nine wells (Geological Survey of Canada, annual report, 1904, part O). Their report includes a general account of the geology of the Montreal district, illustrated by an excellent map on the scale of four miles to the inch, so that the pamphlet will be of interest to many who have no concern with well-sinking.
WE have received from Dr. P. Bergholz a copy of the observations taken at the Bremen Meteorological Observatory during 1904. The work forms one portion of the excellent series of the "German Meteorological Yearbooks," and contains hourly values and means of the principal elements, together with the daily ranges and other useful tables. It may be remembered that Dr. Bergholz translated into German Father Viñes's very valuable work on the circulation and translation of the cyclones of the West Indies, published in 1895, some two years after the lamented death of the author.
MR. A. LINTON, Director of Agriculture for British East Africa, has published the meteorological records of that protectorate for the year 1904. It is admitted that the observations are not so satisfactory as might be, owing to want of sufficient instruments and of uniformity of exposure, but steps are being taken to remedy both these defects in the near future. The report, however, contains valuable records (mostly of rainfall) at twenty-eight stations, taken at 9h. a.m., during the year 1904, together with monthly and yearly means for as long a period as available, in some cases exceeding ten years. The amount of rainfall varies considerably, according to geographical position; in some provinces the crops suffer from lack of sufficient quantity and in others from excess. The yearly average seems to vary from about 14.7 inches at Kismayu to 73-4 inches at Mumias; both stations are practically in the latitude of the equator, the former station being at 43° E. long., near the sea-level, and the latter at 34° E. long., at an altitude of about 4000 feet.
THE large part which her system of secondary and higher education has taken in Germany's extraordinary industrial success forms the subject of an article by Mr. J. L. Bashford in the current number of the Fortnightly Review. The essay summarises arguments which have been urged on many occasions in these columns, and advocates forcibly the need for the provision of a generous supply of higher education of the right kind, if Britain is to regain her position in the world of commerce. It is satisfactory to find a growing disposition on the part of the general Press to explain the shortcomings of our national education and to demand the provision of more funds for higher education. The same number of the review contains two other articles of interest to men of science. Dr. C. W. Saleeby, under the title of "The
Problems of Heredity," reviews at length Mr. Archdall Reid's recent book on the subject, and Miss Harriet Munroe gives a picturesque account of a visit to Walpi to study the snake dance.
FROM a study of the spectra of alloys of different metals, photographed under varying conditions of electrical excitation, atmosphere, and the proportions of the components, Mr. P. G. Nutting, of the Washington Bureau of Standards, has arrived at some interesting conclusions which confirm and supplement the results obtained by Lockyer and Roberts in 1873. Mr. Nutting's researches are described in No. 2, vol. xxii., of the Astrophysical Journal, and the results may be summarised as follows:The spectra of the component metals are independent of one another when the alloy is volatilised by either the arc or the spark. The relative intensities of the component spectra are unaffected by variations of the electrical conditions or by substituting hydrogen, oxygen, vapour, &c., for air as the surrounding atmosphere. Ceteris paribus, the spectrum of the component which has the greater atomic weight will be the brighter, when inductance is used, either with the arc or with the spark. Under certain conditions-which the author enumeratesspectroscopic analysis of alloys to within an error of about 5 per cent. should be practicable. Mr. Nutting further states that, in practice, the presence of impurities in the electrodes is of little consequence, and that when alloys are used as electrodes it is useless to attempt to intensify the spectrum of either component by varying the conditions under which the arc or spark is produced.
THE American Academy of Arts and Sciences has published a pamphlet giving a brief historical account of the origin of the Rumford fund. This fund had its origin in the gift by Count Rumford-who was born at Woburn, Massachusetts-to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences of the sum of 5000 dollars, which was simultaneous with the gift of a like sum, 10ool., to the Royal Society. The purpose of the fund was the same in each case, the award of a suitable premium for discoveries or improvements in heat and light. The gift was accepted by the academy, but for many years no award of the premium was made, as no claimant appeared whose merit was such in its opinion as to justify this. Meanwhile, the fund had accumulated to the amount of 400ol., and in view of the fact that there was no possibility of expending the income in the precise manner contemplated by Count Rumford, application was made in 1831 to the Supreme Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts for relief, if such should be possible. The court issued a decree which modified the possible disposition of the income of the fund in such a manner as to increase its usefulness while keeping entirely within the spirit of the original gift. At the close of the last fiscal year of the academy (1904-5) the Rumford fund amounted to 11,744., the income for that year having been 510l. A standing committee of the academy known as the Rumford committee is charged with the supervision of the trust, and considers all applications for the Rumford premium and all applications made for grants in aid of research. The Rumford committee was first constituted a standing committee in 1833. Its members were nominated annually by the president of the academy until 1863, since which time they have been chosen in the same manner as the other officers. The Rumford fund of the Royal Society has been devoted solely to the award of the premium according to the original provisions of the trust.
OUR ASTRONOMICAL COLUMN. FURTHER ECLIPSE RESULTS BY FRENCH OBSERVERS.-In No. 13 (September 25) of the Comptes rendus M. Salet publishes the preliminary results obtained by his expedition at Robertville (Algeria) during the recent total solar eclipse.
M. Salet was in charge of the mission sent to this station by the Bureau des Longitudes, the chief purpose being to make researches regarding the polarisation of the coronal light.
The first point investigated was the existence of a magnetic field in the neighbourhood of the sun, the presence of such a field being evidenced by the deviation of the plane of polarisation of the coronal light. The result indicated that there is a very slight deviation, amounting to about 2.5, which seems to show that in spite of its great mass the sun has only a small magnetic field.
A photographic study of the distribution of the polarised light of the corona showed the bands of polarisation decreasing regularly in intensity to about one and a half diameters from the solar limb. The maximum of intensity occurs at about 5' or 6' from the limb, and from this distance the bands extend into the inner corona, diminishing in intensity as they approach the edge of the moon. A prominence extending across two bands shows no difference of intensity, thus proving the non-polarisation of these features of the solar atmosphere.
In order to test the atmospheric polarisation, two Savart polariscopes were pointed 90° from the sun, the one towards the pole, the other towards the equator. At this distance the quantity of polarised light during totality was insufficient to observe, although at 30° or 40° from the sun the bands remained visible throughout the period of totality.
To determine the coronal, chromospheric, or atmospheric nature of the corona spectrum lines, a nicol " placed so that it covered half the slit of a spectroscope and entirely extinguished the radially polarised light which is reflected by the corona. The resulting negative showed that the continuous spectrum of the corona differed in intensity on its two edges because of the suppression of the reflected sunlight, but the light from a prominence showed no diminution in intensity after passing through thenicol."
The coronium line, which extends to about 4' from the sun, is seen on both edges, as are the two calcium lines, but the latter are stronger on the edge containing the prominence.
The ultra-violet region of the spectrum, between A 338 and A 305, was also photographed, and shows about fifteen lines of which the nature and wave-lengths have yet to be determined.
COSMICAL EVOLUTION.-Some interesting results concerning the processes of cosmical evolution are given in a mathematical discussion, by Mr. J. H. Jeans, of Cambridge University, which appears in No. 2, vol. xxii., of the Astrophysical Journal.
The author first directs attention to the extremely small densities usually obtained for such binary systems as that of Algol, and points out that these densities are incompatible with the assumption that such systems are composed of incompressible homogeneous fluids; but the discussions concerning the mechanics of such systems are primarily based on this assumption, and are, therefore, in Mr. Jeans's opinion, deprived of any foundation of fact.
Mr. Jeans then discusses the probable mode of evolution of stellar and planetary systems, and arrives at the conclusion that "gravitational instability plays the principal part in the segregation of systems from the original nebula. He contends that Laplace's " rotation theory of cosmical evolution only takes into account a secondary factor in the process, and, in support of the "gravitational instability" theory, he shows that before rotation alone could effect the birth of a satellite a nebulous mass of, say, grams would have to contract until its linear about 1017. dimension was about 10-45 cm., i.e. until its density was
If the material of the original nebula could be considered as consisting of solid particles such as are assumed
in the meteoritic hypothesis, each meteorite forming a molecule of a quasi-gas, the rotational theory would become more tenable.
VISIBILITY OF FAINT STARS AT THE LOWELL OBSERVATORY. -In No. 7, vol. xiii., of Popular Astronomy, Mr. Lowell publishes a chart and some figures which testify eloquently to the "seeing and the instrumental efficiency at the Lowell Observatory, Flagstaff, Arizona.
In going over a chart of faint stars published by Prof. Tucker for magnitude comparisons, Mr. Lampland found that the faintest stars on the Lick chart were perfectly visible at Flagstaff, although the aperture employed there is only 24 inches, whereas at Lick an aperture of 36 inches is available. In the region following Ophiuchi, one of Prof. Tucker's richest fields, 161 stars were shown on the Lick chart. Plotting the same field, independently, Mr. Lampland obtained 173 stars, the greatest increase occurring among the fainter objects. As 15 stars marked on the Lick charts were not found, it follows that 27 were actually seen at Flagstaff which were not recorded by Prof. Tucker. Mr. Lowell remarks that this result is not definitive of what may be charted at his observatory, as moonlight and the rainy season both acted as drawbacks in the present test.
THE ORBIT OF TAURI. The spectroscopic binary Tauri was included in a list of such objects published by Profs. Frost and Adams in vol. xvii. of the Astrophysical Journal, and attention was then directed to the peculiar spectrum of this star. Because of this peculiarity, and also on account of its long period, this object has since been observed regularly at the Yerkes Observatory, and Prof. Adams has determined the orbit, the determination being based on the measurements of the line Hy on twenty-five plates. Owing to the great breadth of this line duplicate measures were made throughout, and, with the exception of one plate, which was rejected in the discussion, they agreed reasonably well.
The following elements were obtained as a result of the research :
The largest residual is -3.1 km., which, considering that the determination is based upon the measurements of only one line, is regarded as satisfactory. No trace of the spectrum of the second component has been found on any of the plates yet secured (Astrophysical Journal, September).
THE CONSTANT OF ABERRATION.As the result of a laborious discussion of more than 15,000 observations, Prof. Doolittle has arrived at the value 20" 54 for the constant of aberration. In publishing this result Prof. Doolittle states that no reasonable weighting of the values will alter it more than o".01. The above value agrees very well with the statement made in 1903 by Prof. Chandler, after a very complete investigation, that the real value would be found to be 20".52, or slightly higher (the Observatory, No. 361).
THE NATAL GOVERNMENT OBSERVATORY.-Mr. Nevill's report of the work done in the Natal Government Observatory during 1904 contains but few references to purely astronomical observations, the chief function of the observatory being distinctly meteorological.
schools. He then dealt with the condition of things which should obtain in a hygienic Utopia, and pointed out that while typhus fever had been practically banished and the mortality from scarlatina reduced 80 per cent. during the past thirty years, that from measles had increased. regards the statement that the practice of hygiene and preventive medicine tends to the preservation of the physically unfit, there is doubtless both a credit and a debit side to the account, and there can be little doubt that the credit side presents a splendid balance.
At King's College the session was opened by Prof. Clifford Allbutt, F.R.S., with an address on "Medical Education." Prof. Allbutt said that in medical education London had its own problems and difficulties, but these could only be solved on principles common to education everywhere and always.
Education must always consist of two parts-the earlier a drawing forth and refining of all the faculties and such a formation of them as habits that a right reason and virtue became easy and pleasant to us; the later the adaptation of these faculties to particular callings. The methods of specific or technical educations were prett clearly seen; their difficulty was only the difficulty of persuading the British parent of the value of any education whatever, and of the importance of providing for it money, equipment, and time.
The university should be responsible only for a certain universal character of the mind and imagination, a training which could be given in any one of many "faculties." The five years' professional course, all too brief as it was, was now much too heavily loaded. The preliminary sciences occupied so far the larger half of it that little more than a year and a half had to suffice for the study of medicine in all its divisions and subdivisions; and yet upon that formidable burden of subjects some enthusiasts were yearning to pile more and more. The reform which was needed was to teach fewer subjects and to teach them broadly and accurately. In the five years' technical course we ought to begin with the two subjects anatomy and physiology, and teach them on university methods. No subjects made a finer training for hand and mind.
At St. George's Hospital the introductory address was delivered by Mr. Brudenell Carter, who also dealt with medical education and the importance of research. He expressed the opinion that a real and thorough training in physics should form, and eventually must form, the essential groundwork of medical education. Next in importance to physics, as a preliminary subject, he would place such a study of language, it may be of one language alone, as would enable the learner to form clear ideas himself and to express those ideas in a manner clearly intelligible to others.
At Charing Cross Hospital, Sir James Crichton-Browne delivered one of his characteristic addresses. He declared that we have hordes of undergrown, underfed, blemished, diseased, debilitated men, women, and children, who are industrially and socially inefficient; that many of our public institutions are as incompetent as the valves of a damaged heart, and that our educational machinery, our economic system, our municipal administration, and our Army are all inefficient.
If they were to be efficient medical men they mud improve their personal efficiency, and see to it that they were physically efficient, intellectually efficient, and morally efficient. For facilitating the attainment of these desirable ends Sir James formulated a series of precepts or principles by which they should be guided.
He dwelt on the necessity for proper exercise and recreation, for proper meals, and for a sufficiency of sleep, THE OPENING OF THE MEDICAL SESSION declaring that the medical student should have regularly
AS is customary, the opening of the medical session
has been made the occasion at several of the schools for the distribution of prizes and the delivery of interesting addresses.
nine hours' sleep in the twenty-four.
At the Middlesex Hospital, Dr. R. A. Young took for his theme Method in Medicine," and dealt with the need for method in teaching and in study, in research and in practice.
At St. Mary's Hospital an address on "The Public and Medical Education " was given by Dr. Wilfred Harris, ir which he stated his conviction that concentration of te
At University College, Prof. Kenwood gave an address on "Preventive Medicine, Past and Present," in the course of which he directed attention to the important positioning occupied by medical practitioners as guardians of the public health, and emphasised the necessity for the adequate teaching of hygiene and public health in the medical
in the preliminary and intermediate subjects at or a few centres would make for efficiency, and that State-controlled examination should take the place of present multitude of degree and diploma-giving bodies.