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in Conn Ection W ITH THE PRESENT AND PAst con Dition of
'0 UR GLOBE,
BY HAMILTON L. SMITH, A. M.
SHELL - LIMEston E, FROM THE MoUTH OF THE THAMEs.
“The World is God’s Epistle to Mankind.”—Plato.
Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1848, By HAMILTON L. SMITH, In the Clerk’s Office of the District Court of the District of Ohio.
THE importance of the sciences of Astronomy and Geology, is acknowledged by every one. Few, however, find sufficient leisure to bestow upon these subjects much attention. They look upon the ponderous tomes which men of science have from time to time prepared, with a sort of indifference, as too learned for them. And yet, show any of these, a curious star in the heavens; tell them of the wonders revealed by the telescope; exhibit to them, the impression of a fish in sandstone, or chalk; or show them through a microscope, the curious and distinctive structure of fossil teeth, or the infusoria in a fragment of flint; and they will give willing attention. Since, then; the subjects themselves are so interesting, so profitable, and withal harmless, we have endeavored—with what success will hereafter appear— to supply a desideratum long felt. The object of the present volume is to present in a popular manner, so much of Astronomy, Meteorology, and Geology, as seemed desirable for everyone to know. While no pretensions are made to scientific accuracy, yet it is believed that the book will be found worthy of an attentive perusal. There is little to be gained by merely glancing here and there at a page; the knowledge thus obtained, if any, will be small, and soon lost. The attentive reader will, if the book be worth perusing at all, find sufficient to amply repay for the time thus spent. It should hardly be necessary for any one at this late day, to offer an apology in behalf of Geological studies, because of the fancied contradictions to the Mosaic chronology. Writers on this subject heretofore, have spent no little pains, in what we may well term, endeavoring to “make darkness visible.” So apolo-. gies were once offered for Astronomy, when that noble science taught the diurnal and annual motions of the earth. We have felt called upon to make no such apology, but simply to state the