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time of Descartes and Leibnitz, when physical science THE Council of the Society of Arts have arranger that a and moral philosophy went hand in hand, to find an course of lectures on "The Atmosphere" shall be given by equivalent.
Prof. V. Lewes on the following Saturday afternoons : March But it must be allowed that the science of Thermo- 8, 15, 22, and 29, at 3 o'clock. dynamics may be treated with advantage from this double point of view; for, after its First Law has been
Mr. B. A. Gould, Cambridge, Mass., bas been appointed established, that heat and work are equivalent and inter- President of the American Metrological Society for the presens changeable, the rate of exchange being fixed by the mechanical equivalent of Joule and Hirn, when we come year. Among the members of the Council of this Society are to the Second Law, named after Carnot, we are compelled
Messrs. Cleveland Abbe, H. A. Newton, Simon Newcomb, to secure conviction of its truth by an appeal to the and S. P. Langley. The Society was founded in 1873, ands arguments of analogy and metaphysics.
objects are to improve existing systems of weights, measures, Hirn spent the last years of his life at Colmar, in the and moneys, and to bring them into relations of simple com society of a few congenial friends, much interested in mensurability with each other ; to secure the universal adoptica metaphysics and meteorology, but cut off from his native of common units of measure for quantities in physical observar France by international strained relations.
tion or investigation, for which ordinary systems of metrologs In this age of practical Thermodynamics his work will do not provide ; to secure uniform usage as to standard points of not be lost sight of ; but we are still far from a complete reference, or physical conditions to which observations must be reconciliation of the abstract theories of the books and reduced for purposes of comparison ; and to secure the use of the observed realities of practice.
A. G. GREENHILL.
the decimal system for denominations of weight, measure, and money derived from unit-bases, not necessarily excluding for
practical purposes binary or other convenient divisions. NOTES.
The Committee of the Cambridge University Antiquarian The Croonian Lecture, which will be delivered before the Royal Society on February 27 by Prof. Marshall Ward, will Society in their fifth Annual Report state that, since the opening be on "The Relations between Host and Parasite in certain 900 books have been added to the collection. The most im
of the Archäological Museum in 1884, over 2800 objects and Epidemic Diseases of Plants."
portant additions have been made in the ethnological department, On Thursday last the Astronomer-Royal was elected by ballot including (during the past year) General Scratchley's collections to fill the place of the late Father Perry upon the Council of from New Guinea, a series of 500 specimens of implements the Royal Society.
and ornaments from the West Indies, presented by Coland METEOROLOGISTS will be sorry to hear of the death of Prof. Fielden, who has also given many rare stone implements and C. H. D. Buys-Ballot, on Sunday last. He was born in 1817, weapons collected in South Africa, and a series of 70 specimen and had been Director of the Meteorological Institute, Utrecht, of dresses, weapons, &c., from the Solomon and Banks Islands for more than 30 years.
and from Santa Cruz, presented by Bishop Selwyn. The Curator, Dr. David Sharp, the eminent entomologist, and late Baron von Hügel, reports that during the long vacation he President of the Entomological Society of London, has accepted excavated with success a Roman refuse-pit and a burial-place 2: the appointment of Curator in Zoology in the Museum of the the eastern side of Alderney. The digging is to be resumei. University of Cambridge, rendered vacant by the resignation of the Rev. A. H. Cooke, whose labours on the Macandrew Col. Sanitary Inspectors was held on Saturday evening at the Fus
The seventh annual dinner of the Association of Pahin lection in that Museum have been so highly appreciated by Avenue Hotel, Holborn. Dr. B. W. Richardson presided, ans conchologists.
proposed the toast of "The Association and its President, S3 Sir William GULL, F.R.S., was so distinguished a physi- Edwin Chadwick,” The duties of the Association, he said, cian, and his name was so well known, that the tidings of his death were to teach and protect its members, and all sanitary inspe:excited a widespread feeling of regret. He died on Wednesday, tors ought to belong to it. He hoped that the apathy at present January 29, from paralysis, and the funeral took place on shown by too many of them would not last any longer. Monday at the churchyard of Thorpe-le-Soken, Essex. He was in his seventy-fifth year.
Dr. A. N, Berlese, of Padua, has been appointed Professor We regret to hear of the death of Dr. L. Taczanowski, which H. Wakker, of Utrecht, Professor of Botany at the dairy school
of Botany to the Royal Lyceum at Ascoli-Piceno; and Dr.! took place at Warsaw on January 11. He is best known for his standard work “Ornithologie du Pérou,” but his contributions
at Oudshoorn, Holland. to the ornithology of Poland, 'of Siberia, and the Corea have also The Botanical Gazette published at Crawfordsville, Indiana been numerous and important.
gives some particulars of one of the most magnificent bequests German papers announce the death of Otto Rosenberger, the ever made for scientific purposes, that of the late Mr. H. She well-known astronomer. He was born in Courland in 1810, for the endowment of the Botanic Garden and School of Botany and in 1831 was appointed to the charge of the Observatory at at St. Louis, Missouri, amounting to not less than between three Halle, and at the same time was made Professor of Mathematics and five million dollars. The trustees have determined to apply This position he held during the rest of his long life. Rosen the income to the maintenance and increase in the scientia berger's name is known chiefly in association with his work usefulness of the Botanic Garden ; to provide fure-proof quarten relating to Halley's comet.
for the invaluable herbarium of the late Dr. George Engelman.
and to supply means for its enlargement; to secure a botanical ANOTHER death which we are sorry to have to record is museum ; and to gradually acquire and utilize facilities for that of Prof. Neumayr, the geologist, of Vienna. He was research in vegetable physiology and histology, the diseas only a little over forty years of age, and his death is a great and injuries of plants, and other branches of botany and harti loss.
culture. To aid in the carrying out of this last purpcom On February 15, Lord Rayleigh will begin a course of seven travelling botanical scholarships have been established. The lectures at the Royal Institution. The subject will be electricity present very able director of the Botanic Garden is Dr. Willine and magnetism.
Tuk Aw Bulletin for February begins with some extracts ness of the soil, (2) deficiency of snow covering, (3) deficiency from the Annual Report on the Government cinchona plantation of rainfall, (4) existence of fog or low-hanging clouds, (5) prevaand factory in Bengal for the year 1888–89. The valuable in lence of high barometer with a small intermingling of air in the formation presented in these extracts is given for the benefit of vertical direction ; and he shows that these conditions were persons growing cinchona in countries which the documents for prevalent in Eastern and Central Europe from the beginning of the Government of Bengal are little likely to reach. The new November; that atmospheric dust existed in great quantities, number also deals with the use of maqui berries for the colour and was propagated westward by easterly, north-easterly, and ing of wine, vine culture in Tunis, phylloxera in Victoria, the south-easterly winds. He considers that changes of temperature twtanical exploration of Cuba, and the sugar production of the had no important relation to the spread of the epidemic. (6) A witht. The section on the last of these subjects relates to statis- lecture recently delivered to the Scientific Club in Vienna, on the rics brought together in Dr. Robert Giffen's report on the progress general circulation of the atmosphere, by Dr. J. M. Pernter. of the sugar trade. Commenting on the figures supplied in this He refers to the idea of the conflict of polar and equatorial report, the writer in the Bulletin says that if they do not winds so long supported by Dove and others, and shows that faxtify a gloomy view of the present position of the cane-sugar the publication of synoptic charts since the year 1863 has demonindustry in British colonies, they scarcely justify a very optim- strated that the above theory does not hold good for temperate stic one. It is obvious that the capital which should be applied and northern latitudes, that the circulation there depends upon but the improvement of manufacturing processes and machinery the positions of the areas of high and low pressures, producing 11, under present circumstances, practically diverted to the mere cyclones and anticyclones. Many dark points require explanamaintenance of the cultivation. And this in the long run must tion, such as the tracks which the cyclones follow, but much be a losing game. At present the fact stands that West Indian new light has recently been thrown upon the subject, especially sugar has to a large extent been driven from the home market by the researches of Ferrel, Oberbeck, and Abercromby. to that of the United States. If in time it should lose that, its
Dr. Albrecht Penck, Professor of Physical Geography at tate apparently is sealed."
the University of Vienna, lately called attention to the fact that At the last meeting of the Paris Biological Society, Prof.
no two official accounts of the area of the Austro-Hungarian Raphael Blanchard gave an interesting account of a peculiar monarchy agree. The difference between the highest and the pigment, hitherto found in plants only, carotine, which he has
lowest estimates amounts to 3313875 square kilometres. By an discovered in a crustacean in one of the Alpine lakes, near
examination of the new special map constructed by the Army Briançon. Its functions are not yet known, but M. Blanchard Geographical Institute, which is on the scale of 1 to 75,000, lotends to pursue his study of the subject on the spot. The and occupies 400 sheets, Prof. Penck has satisfied himself that aaimals cannot be transported alive to lower levels.
the actual area of the Empire is 3247*12 square kilometres
greater than is given in the latest published official account. We are glad to welcome the first number of The University The error arose chiefly from an incorrect triangulation of the Earresion Journal. The Society by which it is issued has Hungarian portion of the Empire, which is 3054*02 square hecome important enough to need an organ of its own ; and the kilometres larger than has been supposed. new periodical, which will appear at the beginning of every mooth, ought to be of service to all who are in any way
It has hitherto been generally believed that the Montgolfier rrierested in the movement.
or hot air balloon cannot be used in tropical climates. If this
were true, ballooning for war purposes would of course be imThe Engineer of January 31 contains a leading article on
possible in places where coal-gas could not be obtained. We "Colour-blınd Engine-drivers," and it is interesting to note learn from the Times that Mr. Percival Spencer, who has been shat the leading technical journal has to say on the subject : making a series of interesting balloon experiments in Central
We do not say that no accident was ever brought about by India, has succeeded in showing that the theory is without the mahility of a driver to distinguish between a green light and foundation. At Secunderabad, in presence of the garrison and 3 rent one, but we can say that nothing of such an accident is to a crowd of European and native spectators, he lately made an le met with in the Board of Trade Reports.” Our contemporary ascent in his patent asbestos balloon. The inflation was effected
of opinion that the testing of the sight of locomotive men by the burning of methylated spirit inside the balloon, which kould be made under working conditions, i.e. with actual signal was held in place by 25 soldiers of the Bedford regiment until
the word to "let go" was given. After rising to a considerable
height, the aëronaut descended by means of his parachute. A PAPER on mortality from snake bite in the district of The spot where the ascent was made is over 2000 feet above the Ratnagherry was read lately before the Bombay Natural History level of the sea, and the achievement was all the more remarkSociety by Mr. Vidal, of the Bombay Civil Service. Many of able because of the sultry climate and the great rarity of the air. he deaths in that district are, he says, due to a small and insignificant-looking snake, called " foorsa" by the natives. It Midlands,” by Mr. Edwin A. Walford, has been reprinted from
An interesting paper on “Some Terraced Hill Slopes of the is a viper rarely more than a foot long, and is so sluggish that it the Journal of the Northamptonshire Natural History Society. does not move out of the way till trodden on. Thus it is much The factors in the formation of these terraced slopes Mr. mare dangerous than the stronger and fiercer cobra.
Walford groups as follows :-(1) The slipping and sliding DURING the year 1889 no fewer than 28 bears, 115 wolves, outwards of the saturated porous marls upon the tenacious clays and 45 wolf-cubs were shot in the single district of Travnik, in at the line of drainage, aided doubtless by the pressure of the Bosnia.
superincumbent rock bed. (2) Displacements caused by the Das Wetter for January contains :-(a) An article by Dr. R.stituents of the marls and marlstone by the passage of the surface
removal by chemical and mechanical solution of certain consmam on climatological considerations about the prevalent water through them. (3) The siiding downwards of the surface epidemic of influenza. From an experience of many years in soil, as described by Dr. Darwin, and latterly illustrated by Mr. dealing with the connection between climatic conditions and the A. Ernst. The suggestions offered by Mr. Walford agree in state of health, the author gives the following conditions as the the main, as he himself points out, with those adopted by Mr. most izvourable for spreading organisms in the air: (1) dry. | A. Ernst in his paper in Nature, February 28, 1889.
Messrs. GAUTHIER-VILLARS (Paris) have recently added monobromacetanilide is carefully mixed with dry caustic potasha three new works to their already large list of photographic treat- a mortar, and the mixture introduced into a refort and heatre ises. One is the “Manuel de Phototypie,” by M. Bonnet, giving | rapidly until a homogeneous reddish brown melt is obtaine full details of the various processes for the rapid reproduction of This is subsequently dissolved in water, and a little annun. photographs, such as is now demanded for many purposes. The or ammonium chloride solution added, when the liquid ir formulæ are stated very clearly, and the apparatus required is mediately becomes coloured green, which colour rapidly change sufficiently illustrated by diagrams. The treatise is thoroughly into a dark blue, and in a short time the blae coloaring matter practical, and will be very valuable to all interested in the subject, is for the most part deposited upon the bottom of the vessel whether as amateurs or for trade purposes. The second—"Temps which the operation is performed. The fused mass may als de Pose”- is by M. Pluvinel, and deals with the difficult question conveniently be dissolved in dilute hydrochloric acid, and a littie of the time of exposure. It is shown that what is generally ferric chloride added, when the formation of indigo tako regarded as a rule-of-thumb process can be reduced to a scientific place immediately. The collected blue colouring matter sexy one. The various functions of the duration of the exposure are be readily obtained pure by washing first with dilute hydrochloris first considered mathematically, and it is then shown how the acid and afterwards with alcohol. That this blue substance wi results of the investigations are to be applied practically, the really common indigo was proved by the fact that it yieldes method being illustrated by worked-out examples. To simplify several of the most characteristic reactions of indigotin, such te matters, tables are given showing the different elements, such as solubility in aniline, paraffin, and chloroform, its sublimabo. coefficient of brightness, for all ordinary photographic subjects. and the formation of sulphonic acids, which gave similar change The treatise is chiefly interesting as a scientific contribution, as of colour with nitric acid to those of indigotin. The final prodh few photographers will care to take the trouble of working out was afforded by its reduction to indigo white and re-oxidation m the time of exposure, now that they have found that good work indigo blue by exposure to air. Moreover, the absorption can be done by judgment alone. The third book is in two spectrum of the colouring matter was found to be identical with volumes, and treats of the various "film" processes (" Procédés the well-known absorption spectrum of indigo. Hence ther Pelliculaires,” by George Balagny). It claims to give a full can be no doubt that indigo is really formed by this very simp account of all that has been said and done in connection with process. The chemical changes occurring in the reaction are com the subject since the introduction of photography, and as far as sidered by Dr. Flimm to be the following :- Indigo blue is met we can judge, this claim is fully justified. Every detail of the produced directly, but first, as a condensation product of the subject is considered in a very practical manner. One of the
CH, registration of flash signals in " optical telegraphy." The “Year-book of Photography ” (Piper and Castle) for 1890 more probably a pseudo-indoxyl of the isomeric constitatis
photographic societies, there are several articles on the advances in photographic
ΝΗ, processes which have been made during the past year, and other by oxidation into indigo, C.H. C=C
CO useful notes. One of the most interesting articles is that by the
со editor on photography in natural colours, from which we learn two molecules each losing two atoms of hydrogen by oxidation that "processes of practical value, to achieve the end, are likely and then condensing to form indigo. It was not found possibile to be discovered by the exercise of ability and perseverance.'
to isolate the intermediate pseudo-indoxyl
, owing to its extreme The only important omission we notice is a record of the instability ; indeed, the all-important point to be observed in the remarkable achievements in astronomical photography. The practical carrying out of the synthesis by this method is that the volume contains a portrait and short biographical notice of fusion must be performed quickly and the temperature raised Edmond Becquerel. The whole forms an invaluable book of rapidly to a considerable height, the whole process occupying reference to all photographic matters, with the exception only a few minutes. The yield of pure indigo under the can referred to.
ditions yet investigated is not very large, amounting to abou: Messrs. George BELL AND Sons have published “The four per cent of the weight of the original anilide. School Calendar and Hand-book of Examinations, Scholarships,
The additions to the Zoological Society's Gardens during the and Exhibitions, 1890.” This is the fourth year of issue, and past week include thirteen Cuning's Octodons (Ortodon raun great pains have been taken, as in former years, to secure that from Chili, presented by Mr. W. H. Newman ; five Comin the information brought together shall be full and trustworthy.
Dormice (Muscardinus avellanarius), British, presented by M: A preface is contributed by Mr. F. Storr.
Florance Wyndham; a Large Hill-Mynah (Gracnia internal
from India, deposited ; a Dingo (Canis tinge), bora in The sixteenth part of Cassell's “ New Popular Educator” has
Gardens, been issued. It includes a map of Australasia. The Proceedings of the International Zoological Congress,
OUR ASTRONOMICAL COLUMN. held in Paris last summer, will be ready for distribution in a fortnight.
OBJECTS FOR THE SPECTROSCOPE.
Sidereal Time at Greenwich at 10 p,m. on February 6 = A new and very simple method of synthesizing indigo has 7m. 563. been discovered by Dr. Flimm, of Darmstadt (Ber. deut. chem. Ges., No. 1, 1890, p. 57). In studying the action of caustic
Mag. Colour R.A. 1890, Deed ska alkalies upon the monobromine derivative of acetanilide, CH,,NH.CO.CH,Br, a solid melting at 131o5, it was found that when this substance was fused with caustic potash a product
(1) G.C. 1595
Yellowish-red. was obtained which at once gave an indigo blue colour on the (3) Geminorum
Yellow (4) a Geminorum
White addition of water, and quite a considerable quantity of a blue
(5) DM. + 3°•7381
Red tish-yellow. solid resembling indigo separated out. The best mode of carrying (6) U Monocerotis Var. Orange out the operation is described by Dr. Flimm as follows:- The
most interesting applications of fexible films mentioned is the monobromacetanilide, indoxyl is formed, CH.com fully bears out the good reputation gained by its predecesorsaphie cu cocy. This intermediate substance then passes cres
sketch of his predecessor, J. C. Houzeau, which is embellished (1) The spectrum of this nebula has not yet, so far as I know, with the portrait of this deceased bibliographer. Considerable been recorded, but the observation will not be difficult, if one attention has been paid to the researches on diurnal nutation and may judge from the description given by Herschel, namely: the determination of the constant. M. Spee discusses the tabulated "Very bright, pretty large, round, much brighter in the observations of the condition of the sun's surface during 1888, middle, mottled as if with stars."
and M. Moreau contributes an interesting note on the movement 2) This star has a spectrum of the Group II. type, Duner of a solid about a fixed point. A list is also given of the comets describing it as very beautiful. He states that all the bands, and asteroids discovered in 1889, and some of the particulars 1-9, are very wide and dark. The observations most likely to relating to their orbils. txtend our knowledge of the group of bodies to which this star ROYAL ASTRONOMICAL SOCIETY.—The annual general belongs are (1) observations of the bright carbon flutings (see meeting of the Fellows of this Society will be held at Burlington P. 305); (2) comparisons with the flame spectra of manganese, House on
Friday, the 14th inst., for the purpose of receiving the ence to the presence or absence of absorption lines, of which Report of the Council, electing officers for the ensuing year, and Danér makes no mention.
transacting other business of the Society. The chair will be
taken at 3 o'clock precisely. 3. Gothard classes this with stars of the solar type. The -aal differential observations are required.
Erratum.- In the elements of companion C of Brook's comet (4) A star of Group IV. The usual observations of the re (p. 305), read 8 = 17° 52' 24":5, and log a = 0 565059. lative intensities of the hydrogen and metallic lines (6, D, &c.), as compared with other stars, are required.
51 Å rather faint star of Group VI., in which the character ni band 6 (near A 564), as compared with the other carbon bands
GEOGRAPHICAL NOTES. 19 and 10), requires further attention. Secondary bands should BARON NORDENSKIÖLD has announced in the Swedish albo be looked for.
Academy of Sciences, that he and Baron Oscar Dickson, with 6) This variable is stated by Gore to have a continuous assistance from the Australian colonies, will start on an expedition şectrum, but it seems probable that lines or flutings will be in the South Polar regions next year. found if the star be examined under the most favourable condations-that is, when near maximum. Rigel was formerly said A RECENT telegram from Tashkent announced that Colonel to have a "continuous" spectrum, but the lines are now by no Pevtsoff and M. Roborovsky had discovered a convenient pass means difficult to see. The star ranges from magnitude 6 at to the north-western part of Tibet, from Nia, and had mounted maximum to 7*2 at minimum, and the period is 31-50 days to the great table-land. The plateau has there an altitude of Gare),
A. FOWLER. 12,000 feet above the sea, and the country round is desolate and
uninhabited, while towards the south the plateau is well watered TOTAL SOLAR Eclipse Of 1886.--Dr. Schuster has thus and wooded. The Tashkent telegram is so expressed that it summarized the spectroscopic results he obtained at this eclipse might be supposed to mean that two separate passes had been Phil. Trans., vol. 180, 1889):
discovered by the two explorers. But the news received from (1) The continuous spectrum of the corona has the maximum the expedition at St. Petersburg on December 26, and dated of actinic intensity displaced considerably towards the red, when October 27, shows that both explorers proposed to leave the umpared with the spectrum of sunlight.
oasis of Keria (100 miles to the east of Khotan) on the next day, 3) While, on the two previous occasions on which photo for Nia (65 miles further east) and there to search for a passage graphs of the spectrum were obtained, lines showed themselves across the border-ridge which received from Prjevaisky the name ourde the limits of the corona, this was not the case in 1886.
of the Russian ridge." This immense snow-clad chain separates 13) Calcium and hydrogen do not form part of the normal the deserts of Eastern Turkestan from the trapezoidal space, the spectrum of the corona. The hydrogen lines are visible only interior of which is quite unknown yet, and which is bordered in the parts overlying strong prominences ; the H and K lines by the "Russian” ridge and the Altyn-tagh in the north-west ;
calcium, though visible everywhere, are stronger on that side the ridges of Tsaidam and those named by Prjevalsky"Columbus of the corona which has many prominences at its base.
and “ Marco Polo" in the north-east, the highlands (explored (4) The strongest corona line in 1886 was at 4 = 4232-8; this by Prjevalsky in 1879-80) at the sources of the Blue River, in 23. probably the 4233.0 line often observed by Young in the the south-east ; and a long, yet unnamed ridge which seems to caromosphere.
be a prolongation of the Tan-la, in the south-west. The pass 5) of the other strong lines, the positions of the following leading to that plateau from Nia, and now discovered by the serm pretty well established :
Russian expedition, is situated some 80 miles to the east of the 4056-7 4084 2 4089-3 4169-7 4195.0 42118 well-known pass across the Kuen-lun Mountains which leads 4280 6 43654 4372 2 4378'14485'6 46279
from Southern Khotan to Lake Yashi-kul. M. Roborovsky's The lines printed in thicker type have been observed also at the to endeavour to reach the ridges Moscow” and “Lake
intention is evidently next to move up the Tchertchen river and Caroline Island and Egyptian Eclipses. 16) A comparison between the lines of the corona and the from the east during his last journey. Having succeeded in
Unfreezing" (11,700 feet high), which were visited by Prjevalsk : line of terrestrial elements has led to negative results.
finding a pass to Tibet in the south of Nia, Colonel Pevtsoff ANNUAIRE DU BUREAU DES LONGITUDES. ---In the volume for proposes, as soon as the spring comes, to proceed himself by this 18, MM. Lewy and Schulhof contribute a list of the comets pass to the table-land, while M. Roborovsky probably will be shich appeared from 1825 to 1835 inclusive, and in 1888, being despatched to explore the same border-ridge further east, in the a continuation of the lists given in former years. M. Lowy south of Tchertchen. abo gives a complete table of the appearances of the planets throughout 1890, and ephemerides of a considerable number of quarter of 1889 contains a most valuable memoir by Dr.
The Boletin of the Madrid Geographical Society for the last variable stars. An elaborate comparison of the various calendars is Fernando Blumentritt, on the intricate ethnology of the Philipfrom the per of M. Cornu, and under the head of the solar system pine Islands. The author classifies the whole of the native popua nich store of information is included. With the notices we
lation in three broad divisions-Negrito, Malay, and Mongoloid; tiad an account of the meeting of the permanent committee of the last comprising those tribes which in their physical appearthe photographic chart of the heavens and the Photographic ance betray certain Chinese or Japanese affinities., All are Congress of September last. This year's Annuaire is as completely filled with information as it has ever been and doubtless their names, race, language, religion, culture, locality, and
grouped in an admirably arranged alphabetical table, where will be as much appreciated by astronomers.
numbers are briefly specified in seven parallel columns. With ANNUAIRE DE L'OBSERVATOIRE ROYAL DE BRUXELLES.– a few variants and cross-references this table contains no less The volume for 1890 is the fifty-seventh annual publication from than 159 entries, and thus conveys in summary form all the this Observatory. It contains tables of the mean positions of the essential particulars
regarding every known tribe in the Philipprincipal stars and their apparent right ascensions, of the occulta- pine Archipelago. From it we gather that the Negritoes--that cion of stars by the moon, and of eclipses of Jupiter's satellites, is, the true autochthonous element, variously known as Aetas, meation being also made of remarkable phenomena relating to Attas, Atés, Etas, Itas, Mamánuas, &c., and physically belong. the moon and the planets. M. Folie gives a biographical | ing to the same stock as the Samangs of the Malay Peninsula
are now reduced to about 20,000, dispersed in small groups and sulphur employed in their production exhibit slight diğer over the islands of Luzon, Mindoro, Tablas, Panay, Negros, ences in different countries, and these, as well as the charado Cebu, Paragan (Palawan), and Mindanao. A few also appear of the charcoal used, its sources and method of production, still to survive in Alabat, Busuanga, and Culioú. Of the Malay underwent but little modification for very many years. The peoples by far the most numerous and important are the southern same remark applies to the nature of the successive operations Bisayas (Visayas), and the northern Tagalas, both described as pursued in the manufacture of black powder for artillery purpers “civilized Christians," and numbering respectively 1,700,000 in this and other countries. and 1,250,000. These two peoples are steadily encroaching on The replacement of smooth-bore guns by rifled artillery whici all the surrounding tribes, causing them to disappear by a followed the Crimean war, and the increase in the size and power gradual process of absorption or assimilation, and the time is of guns consequent upon the application of armour to sluips and approaching when the whole of the islands will be divided into forts, soon called for the pursuit of investigations having for their two great nationalities bearing somewhat the same relation to object the attainment of means for variously modifying the actres each other that the High German does to the Low German of fired gunpowder, so as to render it suitable for the differen! branch of the Teutonic family.
calibres of guns, whose full power could not be effectively, or n some instances safely, developed by the use of the kind of gun powder previously employed indiscriminately in artillery of 21
known calibres. SMOKELESS EXPLOSIVES.1
In order to control the violence of explosion of gunpowder, bn
modifying the rapidity of transmission of explosion from particle I.
to particle, or through the mass of each individual particles of THE production of smoke which attends the ignition or ex- which the charge of a gun is composed, the accomplishment of
plosion of gunpowder is often a source of considerable in the desired results was, in the first instance, and indeed through convenience in connection with its application to naval or out practical investigations extending over many years, sought military purposes, its employment in mines, and its use by the exclusively in modifications of the size and form of the individe sportsman, although occasions not unfrequently arise during masses composing a charge of powder, and of their density as naval and military operations when the shroud of smoke pro- i hardness, it being considered that, as the proportions of saltnetes. duced by musketry or artillery fire has proved of important charcoal, and sulphur generally employed in the productice i advantage to one or other, or to both, of the belligerents during gunpowder very nearly correspond to those required for it different periods of an engagement.
development of the greatest chemical energy by those incorpoesie Until within the last few years, however, but little, if any, materials, it was advisable to seek for the attainment of thought appears to have been given to the possibility of dispens- desired results by modifications of the physical and mechandal ing with or greatly diminishing the production of smoke in the characters of, rather than by any modification in the proportise appliction of fire-arms, excepting in connection with sport. and chemical characters of, its ingredients, The inconvenience and disappointment often resulting from the The varieties of powder, which, as the outcome of carefu obscuring effects of a neighbouring gun-discharge, or of the first practical and scientific researches in this direction, have beer shot from a double-barrel arm, led the sportsman to look hope | introduced into artillery service from time to time, and some u fully to gun-cotton, directly after its first production in 1846, as a which, at any rate, have proved fairly efficient, have been of probable source of greater comfort and brighter prospects in the distinct types. The first of these produced by breaking or pursuit of his pastime and in his strivings for success.
more or less highly-pressed cakes of black powder into gran A comparison between the chemical changes attending the pebbles, or boulders, of approximately uniform size and share burning, explosion, or metamorphosis of gun-cotton and of gun- the sharp edges and rough surfaces being afterwards removed by powder, serves to explain the cause of the production of smoke attrition (reeling and glazing), are simply a further developmer. in the latter case, and the reason of smokelessness in the case of of one of the original forms of granulated or corned powder
. gun-cotton. Whilst the products of explosion of the latter con represented by the old F. G., or small arms, and LG, sist exclusively of gases, and of water which assumes the trans. cannon powder. Gunpowder of this class, ranging in size 5 parent form of highly-heated vapour at the moment of its pro about 1000 pieces to the ounce, to about six pieces to the poi. duction, the explosive substances classed as gunpowder, and have been introduced into artillery service, and certain of 2 which consist of mixtures of saltpetre, or another nitrate of a viz. R. L. G. (rifle large grain), which was the first stry metal, with charred wood or other carbonized vegetable matter, advance upon the old cannon-powder (L. G.): peille-porte and with variable quantities of sulphur, furnish products, of (P.), and large pebble or boulder-powder (P. 2), are 2 which very large proportions are not gaseous, even at high tem-employed more or less extensively in some guns of the press: peratures. Upon the ignition of such a mixture, these products day. are in part deposited in the form of a fused residue, which con The other type of powder has no representative among *** stitutes the fouling in a fire-arm, and are in part distributed, in more ancient varieties; it has its origin in the obviously sound an extremely fine state of division, through the gases and vapours theoretical view that uniforinity in the results furnished by developed by the explosion, thus producing smoke.
particular powder, when employed under like conditions de In the case of gunpowder of ordinary composition, the solid mands not merely identity in regard to composition, but aler products amount to over fifty per cent, by weight of the total identity in form, size, density, and structure of the indivitou products of explosion, and the dense white smoke which it pro- masses composing the charge used in a gun. The practici duces consists partly of extremely finely-divided potassium car- realization of this view should obviously be attained, or at ab bonate, which is a component of the solid products, and, to a rate approached, by submitting equal quantities of one aad le great extent, of potassium sulphate produced chiefly by the same mixture of ingredients, presented in the form of powder : burning of one of the important solid products of explosion-uniform fineness and dryness, to a uniform pressure for a fast potassium sulphide--when it is carried in a fine state of division period in moulds of uniform size, and under surrounding com into the air by the rush of gas.
ditions as nearly as possible alike. The falfilment of the With other explosives, which are also smoke-producing, the conditions would, moreover, have to be supplemented by som formation of the smoke is due to the fact that one or other of the equally uniform course of proceeding in the subsequent dry products, although existing as va pour at the instant of its develop and other finishing processes to which the powder-masses would ment, is immediately condensed to a cloud composed of minute be submitted. liquid particles, or of vesicles, as in the case of mercury vapour The only form of powder, introduced into our artillery serru liberated upon the explosion of mercuric fulminate, or of the for a brief period, in the production of which these condition aqueous vapour produced upon the ignition of a mixture of were adhered to as closely as possible, was a so-called pells ammonium nitrate and charcoal, or ammonium nitrate and picric powder, which consisted of small cylinders having semi-perfus acid.
tions with the object of increasing the total inflaming surface sd Until within the last half-dozen years, the varieties of gun the individual masses. powder which have been applied to war purposes in this and Practical experience with this powder, and with others fu other countries have exhibited comparatively few variations in pared upon the same system, but with much less rigorous forti chemical composition. The proportions of charcoal, salt petre, to uniformity in such details as state of division and condino Friday Evening Discourse delivered by Sir Frederick Abel, F.R.S., at
of dryness of the powder before its compression into cylindrica the Royal Institution of Great Britain, on January 31, 1890
or other forms, showed that uniformity in the ballistic properties