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A WEEKLY ILLUSTRATED JOURNAL OF SCIENCE

To the solid ground
Of Nature trusts the mind which builds for aye."— WORDSWORTH.

No. 1209, VOL. 47.)

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 29, 1892.

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meteoric theory of the sun's heat must be abandoned.” THURSDAY, DECEMBER 29, 1892.

It is true that the larger portion of the solar heat is believed to be due to shrinkage, but it is generally con

ceded that a considerable fraction has its origin in falls GORE'S VISIBLE UNIVERSE.

of meteoric matter into the sun. A glaring case of the isible Universe. By J. Ellard Gore, F.R.A.S.

misuse of a scientific term occurs in this chapter (p. 52), ndon : Crosby Lockwood and Son, 1893)

where Mr. Gore is responsible for the statement that

“the theory generally held by astronomers ascribes the E object of this book is “not to propound any new

heat of the sun to shrinkage of its miss caused by gravihypothesis, but simply to explain and discuss

tation.” Mr. Gore surely meant volume. es which have been supported by well-known

The chapter on celestial chemistry is meagre and unomers and other men of science” as to the “evolu

satisfactory. It seems incredible that the application of the Solar System,” and to give a popular account

photography to spectroscopic work is not even inentivned, “construction of the Universe as we see it, and its

and that no allusion is made to the Draper catalogue of ble development from pre-existent matter."

photographic stellar spectra, to Rowland's photographic Gore has already acquired considerable success as

m ip of the solar spectrum, or to any of the recent photoular writer on astronomical subjects, and the scheme

graphic work. Mr. Gore is also in error in this chapter present volume is, as we might expect, a very good

when he states (p. 79) that although the great nebula in The first three chapters are devoted to a popular

Andromeda “has never been resolved into stars the evint of the hypotheses of Kant and Laplace, the

dence of the spectroscope shows it is not gaseous.” Bright pal objections that have been urged against them, |

bands have been seen in the spectrum by Backhouse ne modifications and additions suggested by recent | Fowler, and myself, and these have been identified as ech. In subsequent chapters such subjects as the fuel probably due to carbon radiation.

sun, the luminiferous ether, the constitution of matter, The Meteoritic Hyp thesis is dealt with in considerial chemistry, and the meteoritic hypothesis are able detail, and here Mr. Gore is most seriously in error. with. Mr. Gore then reaches the purely descriptive He gives what is professedly “a review of the principal n of his subject, and gives excellent chapters on the

na gives excellent chapters on the facts and arguments advanced by Lockyer," and careWay, and on “the latest results respecting the dis- fully enumerates all the objections that have been urged on of stars and nebulæ and their relative motions." by “his opponents," ending the account with the opinion us theories of the construction of the Universe are that “on the whole, therefore, we seem bound to conclude Tiscussed, and in a final chapter the idea of infinite that the weight of evidence is against the truth of the and a finite universe is developed.

Meteoritic Hypothesis." The chapter bears internal evi. sough the general scheme of the book is excellent,dence that Mr. Gore began his consideration of this ecution falls in many places far short of its promise hypothesis with th: opinion which he eiunciites as his ur expectations. When Mr. Gre confines himself final judgment, already formed. historical and descriptive his work is, on the whole, The summary of Pruf. Lockyer's book has not been one, but in discussing theories he has in several made with the care that should have been bescowed upon obviously ventured out of his depth, and has con- | it. There are at least two misquotations ; on p. 91, atly spoiled what would otherwise have been a the substitution of “ periastron ” for “ perihelion ” makes ble addition to popular astronomical literature. nonsense of what is otherwise an important paragraph, · his chapters on the Nebular Hypothesis and Faye's and on p. 113 the omission of the word “other” conr of the formation of the solar system Mr. Gore hus siderably modifies the meaning of the passage quoted. y availed himself of M. Woll's 6 Les Hypothèses There are several errors due to histy compilation, ogoniques.” He has also introduced extensive observations and theories being attributed to Prof. ions from “ the late Mr. Jacob Ennis," but in con- | Lockyer in cases where be only quotes the observations ig Ennis as an authority, Mr. Gore is probably and adopts the theories. On p. 92 Mr Gore says “he

Mr. Ennis was, on his own admission, not a ' (Lockyer) also finds line absorption in Comet Wells matician, and certainly did not by “his own dis-, and the great September comet of 1882." This is misPS,"place the nebular hypothesis on a firm mathe- | leading, the observations of absorption having been made I basis. He proved Mars could not have satellites ; | by Copeland, Maunder, and Vogel. On p. 93 we find e heat of the sun was entirely due to chemical the "theory that the light of comets is due to cullisions zation; that Sirius has twelve planetary attendinis; between the component meteorites” attributed to Prof. lade several other equally important discoveries. Lockyer. The theory is due to Reichenbach, Tait, and uithematical demonstration of the truth of the Sir William Thomson ; Prof. Lockyer's contribution being r hypothesis is about as sound as the well-known the demonstration that spectroscopic observations lead that the earth's surface is Aat. Mr. Gore would to and support the hypothesis. The resulis of Tait's calone well to have omitted the quotations from Ennis, culations given on pp. 227-229 of the “ Meteoritic Hypohave filled the space with a fuller account of the thesis” are also attributed to Lockyer on p. 93 of Mr.

mathe natical investigations of the nebular | Gore's book. On p. 95 we read, “the spectra of the true esis, especially those of Prof. G. H. Dirwin. nebulæ consist of a very faint continuous spectrum ing freely from Young and Sir William Thomson, crossed by one, two, three, or four bright line;" Lockyer re is fairly safe in his chapter on the fuel of the gives seventeen bright lines in his table. Mr. Gore's footut he is in error in stating that “ the note that “the complete hydrogen series of lines were

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