« PreviousContinue »
son, lived to the age of twenty-three, and was five feet seven inches in height. This little man, notwithstanding his clumsy and awkward appearance, was remarkably agile, and possessed uncommon strength : he could with the greatest ease spring from the ground into a chair of ordinary height. He was rather of a morose temper, and extremely vain of himself, and while discoursing in broken English, was extremely (as he imagined) dignified. He continued in England but one season, and through the help of a good benefit, returned to his native country, with his pockets better furnished than when he left it. Cabinet of Curiosities.
NEEDLE ROCKS, ISLE OF WIGHT. For the Family Magazine.
The above cut represents very exactly the Needles as they are termed of the Isle of Wight. They are situated upon the west side of the Island, the whole of which is fenced in with sharp rocks of the same charac. ter as those above; but these needles are the most remarkable.
The Isle of Wight is situated on the southern coast of Hampshire, and is separated from it by a narrow channel. It is about twenty-one miles long and thirteen broad, and is divided into nearly equal parts by the river Cowes, which at its southern angle enters into the channel opposite the mouth of South Hampton bay. The south coast is bordered with very steep cliffs of chalk or freestone, hollowed in many parts into curious caverns and subterraneous grottoes. A ridge of hills runs across the island from east to west, forming a tract of fine pastures which afford grazing to sheep. The air in this island is soft and balmy; the land is extremely fertile; while the landscape presents a rich and varied series of interesting views. England owes much of her reputation for fine glass to the fine white crystalline sand which is sound in abundance in this island.
THE DEAD ALIVE.
A young man had a strong imagination that he was dead, and earnestly begged his friends to bury him. They consented by the advice of the physician. He was laid upon a bier, and carried upon the shoulders of men to church; when some pleasant fellows, up to the business, met the procession, and inouired who it was:
they answered:—“And a very good job it is,” said one of them, “for the world is well rid of a very bad and vicious character, which must have had the gallows in due course.” The young man, now lying dead, hearing this, popped his head up, and said they ought to be ashamed of themselves in thus traducing his fair same, and, if he were alive, he would thrash them for their insolence. But they proceeding to utter the most disgraceful and reproachful language, dead flesh and blood could no longer bear it; up he jumps; they ran, he after them, until he sell down quite exhausted. He was put to bed; the violent exertion he had gone through promoted perspiration, and he got well.—(Heywood's Hierarchy.) Then there is the case of the insane watchmaker, mentioned by Pinel, who insisted that he had been guil!." and that another head had asterwards, by mistake, been put on his shoulders instead of his own. “Look at these teeth,” he would say; “mine were extremely handsome; these are rotten and decayed: my mouth was sound and healthy; this is soul. How difserent is this hair from that of my own head!” Mr. Haslam, in his work on insanity, mentions a case of one who insisted that he had no mouth, and when compelled by sorce to swallow, declared that a wound had been made in his throat, through which the food had been introduced. Benvenuto Cellini, the celebrated Florentine artist, in his Life, says, that “the governor of the castle in which the former was confined had a periodical disorder of this sort; every year he had some different whim. One time he conceited himself metamorphosed into a pitcher of oil; another time he thought himself a frog, and began to leap as such ; another time, again, he imagined he was dead, and it was sound necessary to humour his conceit by making a show of burying him. At length he thought himself a bat, and when he went to take a walk, he sometimes made just such a noise as bats do; he likewise used gestures with his hands and body, as is he were going to fly.”—But it is matter of some jest that Cellini, the writer of another's hypochondriacs, should himself state, that a resplendent light shone over his (own) head from morning till two o'clock in the asternoon, and then again at sunset; and that it was conspicuous to others, to whom he thought proper to show it.—Cabinet of Curiosities.
in ACKETT THE Prophet".
William HAckett, a sanatic of the sixteenth century, after a very ill life turned prophet, and signified the desolation of England. He prophesied at York and at Lincoln; where, for his boldness, he was whipped publicly and condemned to be banished. He had an extraordinary fluency of speech, and much assurance in his prayers; for he said, that is all England should pray for rain, and he should pray to the contrary, it should not rain. Hackett had two brother prophets joined with him, Edward Coppinger, named the prophet of mercy, and Henry Arthington, the prophet of judgment. Coppinger, the merciful prophet, declared that Hackett was the sole monarch of Europe; and at length they proclaimed him, July 16, 1592. On the twentyeighth of the same month, however, the monarch of the whole earth, who had also personated divinity, was hanged and quartered. Coppinger famished himself in prison, and Arthington was pardoned. Fitz-Simon relates, that in a quarrel Hackett had at Oundle, “He threw down his adversary and bit off his nose; and, instead of returning it to the surgeon, who pretended to set it on again while the wound was fresh, ate it.” Hackett on the scaffold made a blasphemous prayer, which is recorded by Fitz-Simon and Camden, too hor: rid to be repeated. He hated Queen Elizabeth, and tried to deprive her of her crown; he consessed to the judges that he had stabbed the effigies of this princess to the heart with an iron pin; and a little before he was hanged, being an accomplished swearer, he cursed her with all manner of imprecations.-Ib.
ONE. Do 1.1.A R AND Firty CENTs prer ANNUM, IN ADVANCE. Should an order for the Magazine be received unaccompanied by advance payment, one number will be sent showing our terms; after which, no more will be forwarded till payment shall have been received. Companies of four individuals, sending Five poli.ARs, current here, free of postage, will be surnished with four copies for one year. Companies of ten, sending ten dollars as above, will be furnished with ten copics. As the sum of $150, which is the price of the Magazine to a single subscriber, cannot conveniently be sent by mail, it will be necessary that two subscribers at least send payment in a letter together. [IP Schools adopting the Magazine will be supplied at one Doll. An per annum for each copy. The postage on the Magazine is 3-4 of a cent under one hundred miles, and 1 cent and 1-4 for any distance over.
WEEKLY ABSTRACT OF GENERAL KNOWLEDGE.
NATURAL HISTORY. [Continued.] THE SENSES are those faculties or powers by which external objects are perceived. The sight, touch, or feeling, hearing, smell, and taste, are called the senses. The organs through which they operate are the follow
ing :- #. EYE is the organ of seeing. The eye-lids, the eye-lashes, and the eye-brows, require no particular description. The eye-ball is of a globular figure; it is composed of various membranes; but those parts of the eye deserving the most notice, are the iris, the pupil, and the retina. The iris is that colored circular ring situated beneath the crystalline lens, which surrounds the central or dark part called the pupil. It is capable of expanding or contracting, which it constantly does, according to the quantity of light which is thrown upon the eye. In a very bright light, the pupil is reduced by the contraction of the iris to a very narrow hole; in a dark place, the pupil is so much enlarged as to render this iris scarcely visible. The pupil is the dark, round opening in the middle of the eye, surrounded by the iris, through which the rays of light pass to the retina, which is the true organ of vision, and is formed by the expansion of the pulp of the optic nerve. Externally, the globe of the eye and the transparent cornea are moistened by a fluid called the tears, which are secreted in the lachrymal glands, one of which is situated above each inner corner of the eye. In proportion as the eye is more or less round, is the sight of a person longer or shorter. Persons of short sight are called myopes, of long sight presbyopes. TOUCH or FEELING resides in every part of the body that is supplied with nerves. The sense of touch is most exquisite in the lips, the tops of the fingers, the tongue, and a few other places. The EAR is the organ of hearing. In man, it consists of an external ear, or auricula, and an internal bony cavity, with numerous circular and winding passages, by which the vibrations of the air are collected and concentrated, and by a peculiar mechanism, conveyed to the auditory nerves. The ear is supplied with peculiar glands, which secrete an unctuous substance called the wax of the ear. The external auditory passage proceeds in a spiral direction to the tympanum, or drum of the ear, which forms a complete partition between this passage and the internal cavities. Beyond the tympanum is an hemispherical cavity which leads to the jauces, or opening at the back of the mouth: this opening is of a trumpet form. The inner cavity, including the winding passage, is aptly called the labyrinth of the ear. The sense of hearing is perhaps still more important than that of seeing ; but as we can have no just conception of the real state of social existence without either of these senses, it is idle to speculate on such comparisons. The NOSE is, in man and most of the superior animals the organ of smelling. It is true, the nerves of the nose are considerably expanded over the nostril, and are defended from external injuries by a peculiar mucus; but it is very difficult to ascertain what are the essential organs of smelling. The nostrils are two passages of the nose which communicate interiorly with the upper part of the mouth. The use of the nostrils
NEW YORK, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 7, 1833.
is for smelling, respiration, and speech. The nose is an important part of the human countenance; it is considered in almost all countries as one of the features to which peculiar merit is attached.
The TASTE resides chiefly in the tongue, in conjunction with the palate, lips, and other parts of the mouth. The tongue is however destined to perform much more varied and important functions than that of conveying to the mind the taste of sapid bodies. It is the tongue, in conjunction with the lips, teeth, palate, and throat, which produces the sound of lauguage. The tongue is partly muscular, and partly composed of membranes and cellular substance. Its upper side is covered with papilla, in which the taste more immediately resides. The impression of sapid bodies on the organs of taste is modified by age, size, habit, and the more or less frequent application of strong stimulants. The state of the stomach, as well as general health, is often indicated by the state and colour of the tongue. In health, the tongue is always of a red colour; in disease, it varies from white to yellow, and sometimes is . almost black. In health, the tongue is always more or less moist; in disease, frequently parched and dry: this last condition is, however, produced by the mere absence of moisture, evinced by the sensation we call thirst.
The SEXES differ by obvious indications; but there are some not so universally recognised, which we may mention. The male is generally of a larger size than the female, and more robust ; the male becomes frequently bald on the top of the head, the female rarely or never; the male has always more or less beard, the female rarely any, except as old age approaches, and then it is chiefly confined to the upper lip. The anatomical differences, besides the obvious ones, are, in the female, a larger pelvis than in the male, more delicate muscles and smaller bones; and the phrenologists say that the female skull is more elongated than the male, from the protuberance in the middle of the back part of the skull, (which they denominate philo progenitiveness, or love of children,) being more prominent. The mental difference of the two sexes are also important; women appear to possess more imagination and less judgment than men; these differences are unfortunately too often widened by mistakes in the education of the female mind.
EARTHQUAKES IN SICILY AND IN THE TWO
- CALABRIAS. THEse earthquakes began on the 5th of February, 1783, and continued until the latter end of the May sollowing, doing infinite damage, and exhibiting at Messi: na, in the parts of Sicily nearest to the continent, and in the two Calabrias, a variety of phenomena: The part of the Calabrian provinces most affected by this heavy calamity, lies between the thirty-eighth and thir: ty-ninth degree of latitude, being the extreme point of the continent; and the greatest force of the earthquakes was exerted at the foot of the particular mountains of the Appenines, named Monte Deio, Monte Soro, and Monte Caulone, extending westward to the Tyrrhene sea. The towns, villages, and farm-houses nearest to these mountains, whether situated on the hills or in the plains, were totally ruined by the first shock, which happened about noon; and there the destruction of lives was the greatest. The towns still more remote were, however, greatly damaged by the subsequent shocks, particularly those of the 7th, 26th, and 28th of February, and that of the 1st of March. The earth was in a constant tremor, and its motions were various, being either vortical, horizontal, or oscillatory. This variety increased the apprehensions of the unfortunate inhabitants, who momentarily expected that the earth would open beneath their feet, and swallow them up. The rains had been continual and violent, often accompanied by lightning and furious blasts of wind. There were many openings and cracks in the earth; and several hills had been lowered, while others were quite level. In the plains, the chasms were so deep that many roads were rendered impassable. Huge mountains were severed, and portions of them driven into the vallies, which were thus filled up. The course of several rivers was changed, and many springs of water appeared in places which had before been persectly dry. In one place near Laureano, two tracts of land, situated in a level valley, were transported to the distance of a mile, with all their trees and olives still standing; and volumes of hot water and sand issued from the ground where they formerly stood; and two others, on which a part of the city of Polistena was built, were moved nearly across a contiguons ravine to about half a mile from their former position, with some hundreds of houses on them, and many of the inhabitants, several i. whom were extricated from the ruins alive and unurt!”
Fissure NEAR POLISTENA.
Near Seminara, a large olive ground was precipitated to a distance of two hundred feet into a valley sixty feet in depth, and this so compactly as to leave uninjured a house with its inhabitants that stood on it, and the olive trees continued to grow, and bore an abundant crop the same year in their new situation.
The permanent chasms or ravines caused by this earthquake were of great size; one in the district of Plaisano, was a mile long, 105 feet broad, and 30 feet deep; another three quarters of a mile long, 150 feet broad, and above 100 feet deep; another was no less than 225 feet deep; one gulf at Fosolano measured 300 feet square; and another, about 750 feet square, and about 30 feet deep. A mountain at the southern part of the peninsula was cloven for the length of
*Sir William Hamilton, who wrote the most complete account of this earthquake, and from whose paper in the Fo Transactions these events are copied, afterwards spoke to one of these survivors, who, with his maid-servant and wife, were extricated; the former unhurt, but the latter, as the man said, “a little so, but she was then nearly recovered.” On Sir William's asking him the nature of the injury his wife had received, he said, “she had both her legs and one arm broken, and her skull so fractured that the brain was visible!”
nearly half a mile, the opening being of an irregular breadth of many feet.
CIRCULAR HOLLOWS IN THE PLAINS OF ROSARNO.
From the city of Amantea, situated on the coast of the Tyrrhene Sea, in lower Calabria, proceeding along the western coast to Cape Spartivento, in Upper Calabria, and thence along the eastern coast to Cape Alice, a part of Lower Calabria, on the Ionian Sea, the towns and villages, amounting to nearly four hundred, whether on the coast or inland were either totally destroyed, or suffered greatly. At Casal Nuovo, the Princess Gerace and upwards of four thousand of the inhabitants lost their lives. At Bagnara, the number of dead amounted to upwards of three thousand; and Radicina and Palmi experienced a similar loss. The total amount of the mortality occasioned by these earthquakes in Sicily and the two Calabrias, was, agreeably to the official returns, thirty-two thousand three hundred and sixtyseven; but Sir William Hamilton thought it still greater, and carries his estimate to forty thousand, including foreigners.
Along the sea-coast of the straits of Messina, near the classical rocks of Scylla, the huge masses detached from the lofty cliffs overwhelmed many villas; the water, as usual, was violently agitated, and showed that the subterranean motion was not less active beneath the bed of the sea than on shore. The prince of Scylla, an old man, on the occurence of the first shock, observing the effects produced on the cliffs, on which his
own castle and the houses of the town were situated, advised o to get boats ready, and to assemble on the shore, to be ready to escape in them,
if another shock should bring down the rock above them. They took his advice, and collected together on the shore accordingly. By the first shock, the sea had been raised and agitated so violently, that much damage had been done on the point of the Faro of Messina; but here it acted with still greater violence; for, during the night, an immense wave, which was falsely represented to have been boiling hot, and to have scalded many persons on its rising to a great height, flowed furiously three miles inland, and swept offin its return two thousand sour hundred and seventy-three of the inhabitants, with the prince at their head, who were either at that time on the strand, or in boats near the shore. The shocks felt since the commencement of these formidable earthquakes amounted to several hundreds; and among the most violent may be reckoned the one which happened on the 28th of March. It affected most of the higher part of Upper Calabria, and the inserior part of Lower Calabria, being equally tremendous with the first. Indeed, these shocks were the only ones sensibly felt in the capital, Naples. With relation to the former, two singular phenomena are recorded. At the distance of about three miles from the ruined city of Oppido, in Upper Calabria, was a hill having a sandy and clayey soil, nearly four hundred feet in height, and nearly mine hundred feet in circumference at its basis. This hill is said to have been carried to the distance of about four miles from the spot where it stood, into a plain called Campo di Bassano. At the same time, the hill on which the city of Oppido stood, and which extended about three miles, divided into two parts: being situated between two rivers, its ruins filled up the valley, and stopped their course, forming two large lakes, which augmented daily.
ERUPTION OF THE TOMBORO MOUNTAIN IN JAVA.
THE most extraordinary convulsions of Vesuvius and AEtna, as they appear in the descriptions of the poet, or the more authentic accounts of the naturalist, bear no comparison in point of duration or force with this eruption in the Indian Archipelago, April 5, 1815. It extended perceptible evidence of its existence over the whole of the Molucco islands, over Java, a considerable portion of Celebes, Sumatra, and Borneo, to a distance of 1,000 statute miles from its centre, by tremulous motions and reports of explosions; while within the range of its more immediate activity, embracing a space of more than 300 miles around it, it produced the most astonishing effects, and excited the most alarming apprehensions. On Java, at the distance of more than 300 miles, it seemed to be awfully present. The sky was overcast at noonday with clouds of ashes ; the sun was enveloped in an atmosphere whose “palpable” density he was unable to penetrate : showers of ashes covered the houses, the streets, and the fields to the depth of several inches; and amid the darkness, explosions were heard at intervals like the report of artillery, or the peals of distant thunder. So fully did the resemblance of the noises to the reports of cannon impress the minds of some officers, that, from an apprehension of pirates on the coast, vessels were despatched to afford relief. Superstition, on the other hand, was busily at work on the minds of the natives, and they attributed the reports to an artillery of a different description from that of pirates. The first explosions were heard on the 5th of April; a fall of ashes took place on the 6th ; from that day the sun became obscured, and apparently enveloped in fog till the 12th. On the 11th, the explosions were tremendous, and shook the houses on the eastern part of Java. Candles were obliged to be lighted at four in the afternoon. The ground in some places was covered with ashes to the depth of eight inches. The darkness of the atmosphere, and occasional falls of volcanic ashes, continued till the 17th of April. From Sambawa, where the eruption took place, to the part of Sumatra where the sound was noticed, is a distance of 970 geographical miles, and clouds of ashes so dense as to create utter darkness at noonday were experienced more than 300 geographical miles from the centre of its operations. The explosions did not cease entirely on the island of Sambawa till the 15th of July. Of all the villages of Tomboro, one only remained, containing about forty inhabitants. In Pekate, no vestige of a house was left; and twenty-six of the inhabitants, who were at Sambawa at the time, were the only part of the population who escaped. There were not fewer than 12,000 individuals in Tomboro and Pekate at the time of the eruption, of whom only five or six escaped. The trees and herbage of every description along the whole of the north and west sides of the peninsula were completely destroyed, with the exception of one point of land near the spot where the village of Tomboro stood.
THE CUMBERLAND CAVERN.
To the west and north-west of the village of Matlock are three apertures in the rock, respectively named the CUMBERLAND, SMEDLEY, and RUTLAN p Caverns, The former of these is well deserving of a short notice.
The entrance is partly artificial, to afford a greater fa cility to the visiter, who has to descend fifty-four steps The cavern now opens on him in solitary grandeur. Huge mases of stone are piled on each other with a tremendous kind of carelessness, evidently produced by some violent concussion, though at an unknown period. He is conducted to a long and wide passage, the roof of which has all the regularity of a finished ceiling, and is bespangled by spars of various descriptions. From above, from beneath, and from the sides, the rays of the lights are reflected in every direction. In an adjacent compartment, rocks are heaped on rocks in terrible array, and assume a threatening aspect. Next is an apartment decorated with what, in the language of the country, is called the snow fossil—a petrifaction which, both in figure and color, resembles snow, as it is drifted by the winter storm into the cavities of a rock. Near the ex tremity of the cavern are to be seen fishes petrified and fixed in the several strata which form the surrounding re. cess. One of these has its back jutting out of the side of the earth, as if it had been petrified in the act of swimming. In another branch of the cavern, a well has been found of a considerable depth.-Wonders of the World.
The people of the continent of Europe commonly called this planet Uranus; but in England and America it has been more common to call it Herschel. It was discovered to be a planet by Dr. Herschel of England, in the year 1781. Many others had previonsly seen it, but they supposed it to be a fixed star.
Uranus is the most distant from the Sun of all the planets that we can see. Its distance is 1800 millions of miles, which is twice as far as Saturn, and nineteen times as far as the Farth.
One revolution of this remote planet round the Sun requires 84 of our years. If its inhabitants do not live longer than those of our earth, sew of them live to be a year old. The length of their day is unknown.
The diameter of Uranus is 35,000 miles. It is therefore the third planet in size, and is 80 times the size of the earth. Six moons revolve round Uranus, but they are so far from us that we can know little of them.
The immense distance of Uranus from the Sun would lead us to think that it must be very dark and cold. But the people may receive more heat and light from the Sun than we are aware of, and they may have better means than we know of for producing light and heat. Their eyes may be fitted to see where we could not; and their bodies may not be so easily affected by the cold. So also, there are some vegetables that will not grow where the climate is very hot; and others cannot bear the cold. •
We have now described all the planets that we are acquainted with. There may be others so small or so distant that we cannot see them with our telescopes.
Cabinet of Curiosities. Five of those which we now know have been discover