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of the planet is an incandescent mass which is slowly recent photographs. Thus the two French cooling and consolidating from the surface inward, astronomers have satisfied themselves that after the and is enclosed within a comparatively thin solid crust. first establishment of a thin crust the inward retreat Some distinguished physicists, however, have con- of the liquid took place gradually, until the fatal tended that the first formed crust would break up, moment arrived when it partly lost connection with sink down, and be re-melted ; and thus that permanent the overlying solidified crust, so that an intermediate consolidation would begin at the centre, and would vacant space was left between them. This temporary gradually extend outwards, until eventually the whole interval, being filled with gas at a high pressure, globe became practically solid, with only here and formed a cushion which was sufficiently elastic to there large vesicular spaces whence active volcanoes prevent any falling-in, but was too limited in extent to are supplied. The densest and least fusible materials affect isostatic compensations, so that the internal would thus tend to accumulate towards the centre, tides might be developed without endangering the and the lightest and most fusible towards the out- external figure of the moon. When, for some unside. The geological belief rests upon a large body known reason, as happens also on our globe, the of evidence from the structure of the terrestrial crust, lunar eruptive forces assumed special vigour, the crust, which it is difficult or impossible to explain except yielding to the pressures along its least resisting parts, on the supposition of an internal mass which at least was overflowed by the liquid interior. Such local in its outer parts is sufficiently liquid to emerge at subsidences gave rise to the great cirques and various the surface as molten lava. The physical argument other features in the polar region, where the cooling rests on certain mathematical assumptions the was most rapid, and where, for easily intelligible validity of which has been contested. One of these reasons, the crust reached considerably greater assumptions is that if the interior were liquid, tides thickness. But in the equatorial zone, where the tides would be set up in its mass, and the crust would rise and the centrifugal force are most powerful, these and fall with the passage of the internal tidal wave. violent perturbations led to vast subsidences which Another objection is based on the supposition that now form the lunar“ seas.” The survival of remains huge mountain-chains could not possibly be supported of the earlier topographical relief, still visible along by a thin crust, but would sink down into the interior. the borders of these tracts, bears witness to the nature More recently the idea has been suggested that the of the gigantic changes. Each eruptive movement internal core of the earth is gaseous. At the high has marked, by the level bottom of the formations, temperatures and enormous pressures in the interior the height of the level of the subjacent liquid. Five of the planet, gaseous iron or lava must be more such stages in the subsidence of the molten matter incompressible than steel is at the surface. On the are displayed in the photographs. We can underoutside of this gaseous mass it is believed that the stand that the process would be repeated with materials pass into the liquid form or magma which diminishing energy until the gradually thickening extends as a comparatively thin envelope round the crust presented too great an obstacle to the eruptive gaseous core, and shades off outward' into a solid action. Various striking examples are cited by the crust which may not be more than twenty-five or thirty authors; in particular one where the five platforms miles in thickness. The most recent earthquake are separated from each other by a step-like interval observations have been quoted in support of this view. of several thousand metres. Had the consolidation
Messrs. Læwy and Puiseux approach the subject begun at the centre of the moon, it is contended, the impartially from a study of the phenomena presented result would have been altogether different, for then by the surface of the moon as recorded in a series only the latest level should have been seen, and the of photographs. They accept the general belief that eruptive forces would have had neither an opportunity our satellite was once a liquid globe, and that traces of manifesting themselves nor the means of leaving of its passage from that condition to its present state permanent traces at very different stages. of consolidation can be clearly recognised. They MM. Lewy and Puiseux examine the argument cannot say whether its temperature increases with from the tides in favour of the consolidation of a depth from the surface, or if there is any variation in planet from the centre outwards, and remark that density, but they find in their photographs various it must be considered as doubtful, because we do not particulars which, in their opinion, show that the know how far the coefficient of viscosity or internal solidification started from the surface.
friction, which has been employed in the calculations, The differences of level on the surface of the moon agrees with the reality. They suggest that as the are relatively greater and more abrupt than those on materials in the interior are under enormous pressure the surface of the earth, and they display in many they may quite possibly have such viscosity, and ways the dynamic effects which a liquid when in yield so slowly to planetary influences, which are conmovement exerts on its solid containing walls, such tinually changing in direction in consequence of the as the superficial outpourings which have covered two diurnal movement, that no appreciable tidal deformafifths of the visible lunar surface and have turned tion may result. In the case of the moon it is these tracts into continuous plains, round the margins admitted that the tides in the still liquid mass would of which numerous remains of the previous relief for a long time delay the formation of an outer have been left. Other effects are seen in the traces crust, which before its final establishment must have of instability in the mountain ranges, the fractures, undergone many violent disruptions, when its brokensharply defined terraces and marginal fissures
up sheets were overflowed by the molten matter from often observable. The neighbourhood of a great within. But in the course of time it has ended by sheet of liquid material is required to account for attaining a great thickness in consequence of conthe undulations and horizontal displacements which tinual cooling and the contraction of the outer layers. have affected large tracts of the surface, such as the The argument that on the supposition of a combreaking down of the crest of the Apennines, the paratively thin crust the existence of mountainous separation of the rectangular blocks of the Caucasus, masses would be impossible is less applicable to the and the formation of the rectilinear valleys of Rheita, moon, where the force of gravity is six times less the Alps, and Ariadæus.
than on the earth. But in the opinion of the two The most decisive argument in favour of the French astronomers the argument need not be gradual cooling of the moon from the outside towards seriously considered, either for our planet or for our the interior appears to be furnished by some facts satellite, inasmuch as it depends on a problematic which are brought out with great clearness by the theory which is entirely based on an inaccurate
hypothesis homogeneity. Mountainous
A NATIONAL exhibition of brewing materials and crescences, so far from weakening the general stability, will be held in Paris during March, 1906. really conduce to it; they are not only held up by the tenacity of the neighbouring parts, but, as Airy sug
At the meeting of the French Physical Soci gested, they probably have roots which plunge down January 20, under the presidency of M. d'Arson into material of greater density and permit them to following officers were elected :-Vice-preside float.
Amagat; general secretary, M. Henri Abraham ; The authors affirm, in conclusion, that their detailed M. de la Touanne. The office of president study of the moon appears to them to confirm M. Dufet. geologists in their preference for the theory of a thin crust and to indicate that the transition to solidity,
THE Times correspondent at Colombo states still incomplete for the moon, is far from having H. A. Blake, Governor of Ceylon, announced at reached its end upon the earth. ARCH, GEIKIE. meeting of the Asiatic Society that Sinhalese medic
of the sixth century described 67 varieties of mo
and 424 kinds of malarial fever caused by mosquito NOTES.
At the meeting of the Anthropological Institute We regret to announce that Prof. G. B. Howes, F.R.S.,
held on Tuesday next, February 14, Dr. A. C. H died on Saturday last, February 4, at fifty-one years of age.
F.R.S., will exhibit a series of kinematograph pictus
native dances from the Torres Straits, taken by him It is proposed to erect a monument at Laibach, in Aus- in New Guinea. Applications for admission should be tria, to the memory of Vega, author of the well-known addressed to the Secretary of the Institute at 3 Hanover table of logarithms, which is now in its eightieth edition. square, W. From the American Mathematical Bulletin for January we
A LARGE and influential international committee has been learn of the death of Dr. Francesco Chizzoni, professor of formed in Heidelberg, under the presidency of His Excelgeometry at Modena, and of Prof. Achsah M. Ely (Miss lency Dr. A. Frciherr von Dusch, Minister of Education, Ely), head of the department of mathematics at Vassar &c., of the Grand Duchy of Baden, with the object of College, U.S.A.
honouring the memory of the late Prof. Carl Gegenbaur,
who for nearly thirty years was the director of the AnaThe Wilde medal of the Manchester Literary and Philo- tomical Institute of Heidelberg. The committee has decided sophical Society has been awarded to Prof. C. Lapworth, upon a life-size bust of Gegenbaur, to be executed in marble F.R.S. The medal will be presented on February 28, when by Prof. C. Seffner, Leipzig. The bust will be placed in the Wilde lecture of the society will be delivered by Dr. the vestibule of the Anatomical Institute, probably in the D. H. Scott, F.R.S., on “ The Early History of Seed- early summer, at a date not yet fixed. The committee bearing Plants, as recorded in the Carboniferous Flora." invites former pupils of the deceased master, and all those
who have benefited from his epoch-making works on human For the past year, a station for solar research has been
and comparative anatomy, to send monetary contributions, maintained on Mount Wilson, California, by the Yerkes with their addresses and titles, to Prof. M. Fuerbringer, Observatory, with the aid of a grant from the Carnegie or to Prof. E. Goeppert, both in Heidelberg. Every conInstitution of Washington. This station has now been tributor will receive a picture of the bust, and casts may replaced by a new solar observatory which has been estab- be obtained, on special application, from Prof. C. Seffner lished by the Carnegie Institution, and the following staff, formerly of the Yerkes Observatory, has been appointed :
AFTER an interval of two years the fifth conference of Prof. G. E. Hale (director), Prof. G. W. Ritchey, Mr. F.
West Indian agriculturists was held at Port-of-Spain, Ellerman, and Mr. W. S. Adams.
Trinidad, from January 4 to 13. It was attended by offs
cial, scientific, commercial, and practical representatives ProF. Valdemar Stein, leader of a well known Copenhagen from all parts. In his presidential address, Sir Daniel analytical and chemical laboratory, where for a number of Morris gave an interesting survey of the great economic years official and private tests and investigations in Den change which is in progress. Taken in the aggregate. mark have taken place, died on February 1, aged 69 years,
sugar cultivation must still be regarded as the backbone He took over in 1863 the laboratory founded by H. C.
of the colonial industries, but in some of the islands it has Örsted and altered it to its present shape, making it a
already become of comparatively little or no importanre, valuable public institution. Beside his work there Stein
Trinidad is now a cacao-producing island, its exports of was Government adviser in chemical agriculture, and wrote
this commodity having risen to the value of a million many scientific articles on chemical and agricultural sub- sterling per annum. Grenada's cacao exports are valued jects.
at 250,000l., and Jamaica's at 80,oool. Cotton growing,
too, has been successfully re-established in several islands, The Imperial Academy of Sciences, St. Petersburg, at the and remunerative prices for the raw cotton are being last annual meeting, awarded the Lomonosoff prize of 100l. to obtained from Lancashire merchants. The exportations Prof. N. A. Menschutkin for his well-known and extensive of fruit far exceed in value those of the staple industry. researches in the domain of theoretical chemistry. The Ivanoff | The development of the tobacco, rubber, sisal hemp, fishprize was awarded to Prof. P. N. Lebedeff, of Moscow, curing, and other industries also came under review, and for his remarkable experimental researches on the pressure Sir Daniel dwelt upon the importance of agricultural shows of light. At the same meeting, Prof. S. Th. Oldenburg and on the provision made by his department for teaching declared, in his yearly review of the work of the academy, elementary science and the principles of agriculture in the that the Polar Committee had given up all hope of the various colleges and elementary schools. Numerous papers return of Baron Edward Toll, F. G. Seeberg, and their were read and discussed, Prof. d'Albuquerque, Dr. Watts, two companions. The party was probably lost during the Prof. Harrison, and others supplying valuable information Arctic night while trying to cross the ice-fields lying relating to sugar; Mr. Hart, Mr. de Gannes, &r. on between Bennett Island and the New Siberian archipelago. cacao; Mr. Bovell, Mr. Sands, &c., on cotton; and so on.
For practical purposes visits were paid to several cacao natural objects and processes in elementary schocls." and sugar estates. Owing to its more than usually repre- Several eminent writers have united to give their views as sentative character the conference is declared to have been to the scope and limitations of nature-study; while others the most successful of the series.
have done their best to refute hostile criticism of the move
ment. “Faddism," the bane of the movement, is strongly The very high barometric readings over the British Isles
deprecated, In wishing the new venture a successful during the latter part of January last are noteworthy. The
career, we may take the opportunity of recording our full weather report for the week ending January 28 issued by
sympathy with the effort make scholars actually the Meteorological Office stated that on Wednesday (25) acquainted with natural objects, instead of attempting to the eastern edge of an anticyclone had appeared over the
learn about them through books alone. But the interprewest of Ireland; this system, moving slowly eastward, and
tation of the movement must be a liberal one, and it must continually increasing in intensity, covered the whole king. be realised that a visit to a museum is just as much dom by Thursday, its maximum pressure being about 30.7 nature-study as is a saunter through a country lane. inches. It subsequently moved southward and south-westward, and continued to increase in energy until Saturday The double number of the American Naturalist for (28), when the barometer rose to 31 inches or more over the November and December last contains a suggestive article south-western parts of the United Kingdom. The highest by Mr. W. D. Matthew on the arboreal ancestry of reading was reported from Scilly, at 2h. p.m. on January 28, mammals. Strong arguments have been brought forward 31.06 inches, and appears to have been the highest on during the last few years by Mr. Dollo in Belgium and by record for that part of the kingdom. Very high readings Mr. Bensley in America to show that the ancestors of also occurred over the eastern portion of the North Atlantic. marsupials were probably arboreal; and in the present Recent cases of very high readings occurred in January, communication the author seeks to show that the same 1902, January, 1896, and January, 1882. The highest holds good for mammals in general. It is urged that the reading on record in the British Isles is 31:11 inches at mammals of the Cretaceous were all of small size and Ochtertyne (Scotland), in January, 1896, and the lowest mostly of a primitive type from which both marsupials 27.33 inches at the same place, in January, 1887. It will and placentals might well have been derived. These early be observed that all these extreme readings have occurred mammals were probably arboreal; and if so, the opposable in the month of January.
thumb and hallux of certain living types is an archaic and
not an acquired feature. Support to the view as to the We have to acknowledge the receipt of a copy of the
arboreal habits of the ancestral mammals is afforded by Transactions of the Hull Scientific and Field Naturalists' the Upper Cretaceous upland flora, which first permitted Club for 1904 (vol. iii. part ii.). The most important item
the existence of an extensive terrestrial land mammalian in its contents is a list, with references, of the land and freshwater molluscs of the East Riding, drawn up by that arboreal mammals had taken to their distinctive mode
fauna. If the theory be true, it entirely upsets the old idea Mr. T. Petch, occupying fifty-two pages.
of life to escape persecution on the ground. THE salmon and trout of Japan form the subject of an We have received a copy of an important memoir by article by Mr. T. Kitahara in vol. v. part iii. of Anno
Dr. O. Abel, published in the Abhandlungen of the Austationes Zoologicae Japonensis. In place of the nine
trian Geological Survey (vol. xix. part ii.), on the fossil species of these fishes admitted by Messrs. Jordan and sirenians of the Mediterranean formation of Austria, into Evermann, the author recognises only seven from Japanese the merits of which the limitations of space do not admit waters, of which the majority belong to Oncorhynchus. of our entering so fully as we desire. The title of the
The contents of the Biologisches Centralblatt for memoir scarcely does justice to its contents, for although January 15 include an article on the structure of certain the prime object is the description of the species known as ants' nests, by Mr. C. Ernst, and a criticism, by Dr. C.
Metaxytherium krahuletzi, the author also describes a Schröder, of Mr. C. Schaposchnikow's theory of the colour- number of remains of the much more primitive genus ing of the hind-wing of the butterflies of the genus Cato- Eotherium, from the Eocene of the Mokattam Range, near cala, to which allusion has been already made in our Cairo. The most important feature connected with the columns.
latter (if the remains be rightly identified) is the discovery
that Eotherium possessed a complete pelvis, showing a The Zoologist commences the year well with an excellent
well-marked obturator foramen. In this respect the genus article on budding in animals by Prof. McIntosh, of St.
differs from all other known members of the order, and Indrews, in which the various forms of propagation by
is thus brought into connection with less specialised mamgemmation are described in a clear and popular manner.
mals. The three Egyptian Eocene genera Eotherium, In the same issue appears Mr. Southwell's account of seal. Eosiren, and Protosiren (new) are regarded as the earliest ing and whaling for 1904. Eleven right whales were cap- known ancestors of the dugong group; and to these suctured during the season by British vessels and at British
ceed Halitherium in the Oligocene, Metaxytherium in the stations; but the Americans are reported to have taken
Miocene, and Felsinotherium in the Pliocene. In seeking no less than forty-nine. The price demanded for sizable
to illustrate the origin of the downward flexure of the whalebone is 2500l. per ton. Fin-whale hunting is being
muzzle of the dugong by a malformed horse skull, we think pursued with great energy, and as the demand for the the author has been ill-advised, as there is a much simpler products of these whales is limited, the author suggests and more natural explanation of the feature. In connection that the market may be glutted.
with the memoir by Dr. Abel,
may refer to The Vature Study Review is the title of a journal pub- paper on the pelvis of Steller's sea-cow (Rhytina stelleri) lished in New York of which the first volume is before us. by Dr. L. von Lorenz, published in part iii. of vol. xix. of " The aims and plans of the editorial committee,” it is the Abhandlungen of the Vienna Geologisches Reichsanstated in the introduction, “ are based upon an interpreta- stalt. The description and figure of this rudimentary bone tion of nature-study in its literal and widest sense as includ- supplement Dr. Abel's account of sirenian osteology in ing all phases, physical as well as biological, of studies of general.
DR. STRONG, the director of the Biological Laboratory, It is always of interest to note a distinct novelty in the Manila, has published a valuable experimental study of photographic line, but in the new Lambex system of day. the subject of protective inoculation against Asiatic cholera | light loading and film and plate changing, which has (No. 16, Bureau of Government Laboratories, Manila). been introduced by Messrs. R. and J. Beck, Ltd., in a new After detailing the various methods of producing experi- class of cameras called the Lambex cameras, we have mentally immunity against the cholera microbe, he dis- quite a new invention. The makers have sent cusses the use of Haffkine's prophylactie, which has been inspection one of these cameras with the so-called Lambex extensively employed in India with encouraging results,
skeleton and its envelope. The method of exposing is but an objection to which is the marked reaction that most simple and ingenious, and is one that will no doubt follows the inoculation, causing the inoculated person to
find considerable favour among photographers. The be somewhat ill for two or three days. To remove this skeleton, less than half an inch thick, is the name of the objection; Dr. Strong has obtained a prophylactic fluid by folded strip of paper with a tag attached at each fold; in suspending the cholera microbes obtained from agar cul- each of the folds, twelve in number, a film or plate, of any tures in sterile water, keeping this suspension at 60° C. for description or make, is held by a flap at the top and two several hours, then incubating at 37° C. for three or four
corner slots at the bottom, and an opaque card is attached days, and finally filtering through a porous porcelain filter.
to the front. This skeleton is contained in a double length The fluid so obtained (a product of the autolytic digestion opaque envelope, the unexposed films remaining in the of the cholera microbes) was found to produce a high lower portion, and the exposed films being pulled one by immunity in animals against cholera, and when injected
one into the upper portion by the attached tags. The lower into man was found to be free from danger, and to produce portion of the envelope is provided with an opening to practically no general or local disturbance.
correspond to the size of the film through which the expo
sure is made, and surrounding this opening is a stiff proIn the Victorian Naturalist for November, 1904, it is jecting edge of card into which the envelope with its mentioned that, at the October meeting of the Field
skeleton is slid into a frame in the camera. The makers Naturalists' Club in Melbourne, a number of collections claim many advantages for this system, such as daylight of wild flowers were sent from State schools in the loading, any plates or films may be used, the skeletons country, including some so far away as Hawkesdale. can be recharged, no scratching of films, no mechanism, Dimboola, and Mansfield. These were of great interest &c. The compactness of this system renders it applicable to teachers and children from the schools in Melbourne, to both folding, pocket, and box cameras, and the makers who were allowed to take away named specimens for have now prepared a series of well-made Lambex cameras, study. Would it not be possible to include in one of the constructed in several forms and sizes, and fitted with their exhibitions, such as the Grand Horticultural Exhibition well-known lenses. Limitations of space prevent us from held last June in the gardens of the Royal Botanic Society, entering more into detail, but the handbook of instructions similar collections from country schools for the benefit of in the form of a neat pocket-book contains all the necessary schools in the metropolis?
information. It is remarkable how many comparative experiments William Ramsay contributes an article having the title
To the February number of the Monthly Review, Sir conducted in tropical countries, with some or all of the established rubber plants, have demonstrated the superiority the changes introduced into conceptions of the nature of
“ What is an Element?” It contains a popular account of of Hevea brasiliensis, the source of Para rubber. One of elements owing to the discovery of the inert gases of the the latest accounts is that by Mr. W. H. Johnson, director atmosphere and of radium and the radio-active elements. of agriculture, Gold Coast, issued as one of the miscellaneous series of Colonial Reports. Experiments in the The remarkable power of aluminium to absorb comBotanic Gardens, Aburi, were unsuccessful with the West pletely the vapour of mercury even when highly diluted with African vine, Landolphia owariensis, Ceara, Manihot air, and at the ordinary temperature, is the subject of a glasiovii, Assam, Ficus elastica, and Central American paper by N. Tarugi in the Gazzetta for January 14. This rubber, Castilloa elastica ; fairly satisfactory results were property is made the basis of an extremely delicate test for obtained with the indigenous Funtumia elastica, but Hevea mercury, and of a preventive measure against poisoning by excelled in quantity and quality of rubber, in its rate of mercury vapour. A species of respirator has been patented growth, and has been remarkably free from insect and in which the air that is inhaled is made to pass through a fungus pests.
mass of finely divided aluminium ; in this passage every
trace of mercury is absorbed, the action being so complete There seems to be good reason to believe that explora- that the dense vapours evolved by heated mercuric chloride tion of the more remote parts of Eastern Asia will add may be breathed with impunity. The respirator has already very considerably to the number of botanical species already been introduced with good results into the mercury mines known. In vol. iv. of the Records of the Botanical Survey
of Monte Amiata. of India, Sir Joseph Hooker states that the number of A STRIKING instance of the intimate connection existing species of Impatiens, the second largest genus of Indian
between the configuration of chemical substances and their flowering plants, recorded for India has increased from susceptibility to fermentation is to be found in a paper by 124 to 200 in thirty years, and that many more may be c. Ulpiani and M. Cingolani in the Gassetta for January expected from the less accessible districts of Burma, Nepal, 14. The Bacillus acidi urici, which has the property and the Eastern Himalayas. In the hope of inducing forest decomposing uric acid into carbon dioxide and urea bra officers or other officials in India to take up the collection, process of successive hydrolysis and oxidation, is without or better, the study of this genus, Sir Joseph Hooker is action on the closely allied substances a-methyluric acid. publishing in the Records an epitome of the known species, guanine, caffeine, and theobromine. On the other hand and he also directs attention to two points of interest, the the bacillus is capable of rapidly and completely oxidising anomalous structure of the flower, and the remarkable such acids as tartronic, malonic, and mesoxalic acids, which details of segregation of the species.
contain the same carbon chain as that constituting the