Page images
PDF
[merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors]

Solar System.

sition of a deep cavern of waterandsteam. Suppose water from the surface of the earth to penetrate into this cavity beneath, represented at the letters A D by the cracks or rents F. F.; while, at the same time, steam, at an extremely high temperature, rises upwards through the cracks C C ;-when this steam reaches the cold water in the cavity, a portion of it is at first condensed into water, while it gradually raises the temperature of the water already in the cavity; till at last the lower part of the cavity is filled with boiling water, and the upper part with steam under high pressure. As the pressure of the steam increases, its expansive force becomes greater and greater, and at length it forces the boiling water up the fissure or pipe EB, and a considerable quantity runs over the rim of the basin. When the pressure on the steam in the upper part of the cavity A, is thus diminished, it expands till all the water D, is driven to E, the bottom of the pipe, When this

happens, the steam rushes up with great velocity, as on

the openiug of the valve of a steam boiler. If the pipe be choked up artificially with stones, (as was done by Dr. Henderson,) a great increase of heat must take place, for it is prevented from escaping in steam; so that the water is made to boil up in a few minutes, and this brings on an eruption.—Saturday Mag.

[ocr errors]

Referexces.—S Sun, A Orbit of Mercury, B Venus, C. Earth, D Mars, E Vesta, F Juno, G Pallas, H Ceres, I Jupiter, K Saturn,

L us, M part of the Comet's Orbit.]

[blocks in formation]
[blocks in formation]
[graphic]
[graphic]
[graphic]
[graphic]
[graphic]
[graphic]
[graphic]
[graphic]
[graphic]
[graphic]
[graphic]
[graphic]
[graphic]
[graphic]
[graphic]
[graphic]
[graphic]

Their names are, Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and because Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, &c. move in larger

Saturn, Herschel or Uranus, Ceres, Pailas, Juno, and Vesta. The first five may be seen with the naked bye; these have been known from the remotest times. Uranus, discovered more recently, can be perceived by the naked eye only under the most favourable circumstances; the other four cannot be seen at all, except by the aid of the telescope; hence, they are sometimes called telescopic planets." The Copernican or Newtonian Philosophy, which alone can solve the various phenomena of Nature, places the planet Mercury nearest the Sun,-then Venus, the Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, &c.; and beyond them the firmament of the fixed stars, which are supposed to be Suns, and centres of other systems. The path in which these planets move is called their orbit; and astronomers have made it evident that each of the above named planets has its respective orbit, and stated revolution. All these are opaque; and, like the Moon, they borrow their light entirely from the Sun, as is evident from their appearing, when viewed through the telescope, with all the various phases and changes of the Moon. Mercury and Venus, because they move within the orbit of the Earth, are called inferior or interior planets;

* The §: Uranus was discovered by Dr. Herschel, on the 18th of March, 1781; Ceres by Piazzi, June 1, 1801; Pallas by Olbers, March 28, 1802; Juno by Harding, Sept. 1, 1806; Vesta by Olbers, March 29, 1807.

orbits than the Earth, they are called superior or erterior planets. The Earth is attended by one, Jupiter by four, Saturn by seven, and Uranus by sir Moons, which also receive the name of Satellites. These Satelites or Moons are called secondary, as the former are called primary planets. Whilst the planets perform their periodical revolutions round the Sun, by which the course of their year is regulated, they turn round their own axes, and so they obtain the alternate succession of day and night. Our Earth or Globe, which seems so vast to us, is nearly a thousand times, smaller than Jupiter, which appears to the naked eye little more than a shining atom. Around the Earth, to a certain height, is a rare transparent and elastic substance called the Air or Atmosphere, in which we live and move, but without it, should die. Mercury, Saturn, and the planet Herschel, are comparatively but little known; the first, because it is too near the Sun; the last two, because they are so remote from it. Every thing in the Universe is systematical; all is combination, affinity, and connexion. From the relations which exist beween all parts of the World, and b which they conspire to one general end, results the harmony of the world. The immutable relations which unite all the worlds to one another, constitute the harmony of the Universe!—Guide to Knowledge

THE GIANT BOY.

Mr. Thomas Day was the reputed father of the dwarf family, and exhibited himself as small enough for a great wonder, as he was. He was also proprietor of the show; and said he was thirty-five years of age, and only thirtyfive inches high. He fittingly descanted on the living personages in whom he had a vested interest. There was a boy six years old, only twenty-seven inches high. The Wild Indian was a civil-looking man of color. The Giant Boy, William Wilkinson Whitehead, was fourteen years of age on the 26th of March last, stood five feet two inches high, measured five feet round the body, twenty-seven inches across the shoulders, twenty inches

round the arm, twenty-four inches round the calf, thirtyone inches round the thigh, and weighed twenty-two stone. His father and mother were “travelling merchants" of Manchester; he was born at Glasgow during one of their journies, and was as fine a youth as I ever saw, handsomely formed, of fair complexion, an intelligent countenance, active in motion, and of sensible speech. He was lightly dressed in plaid to show his limbs, with a bonnet of the same. The artist with me sketched his appearance exactly as we saw him, and as the present engraving now represents him: it is a good likeness of his features as well as of his form.—Erery Day Book.

[graphic]
[ocr errors][merged small]

AMong the many natural curiosities of our country, the admiration of the scientific, as well as of the ordinary observer, has long been excited by those huge single masses of rock which, resting on a comparatively small pivot, and exactly balanced there, still stand as steadily as though the narrow part were uppermost, and the whole body were firmly lodged on its base. Such are the celebrated Boulder Stone of the North, and the Logan Rock of Cornwall. The wood-cut at the head of this article represents with great accuracy the character of another called Buckston E, on the borders of Gloucestershire and Monmouthshire. Buckstone is by no means the largest of its kind; though in some respects, perhaps, it repays more than any other the visit of the tourist. Independently of its extraordinary form and position, the situation in which it is placed gives it a very strong additional interest. Removed only a few yards srom the summit of a high sugar-loaf hill, commanding one of the most varied and beautiful landscapes of which this country can boast, it is itself seen in some directions at a very great distance, conspicuous above the copsewood, which embosoms it on every side; and inviting us to examine only its own extraordinary character, it presents to us a view which would otherwise probably have escaped our notice altogether. This view would of itself amply repay us for the time required to make the excursion from any of the "...; places. . It is composed of a substance called millstone-grit,a plum-pudding stone, consisting chiefly of sand and quartz pebbles, familiarly known in the neighbourhood by the name of Jackstones. Its circumference at the top is above fifty-three feet, while its base is less than eleven feet in girth. Its perpendicnlar height from the extremity of the projecting point to the level of the centre of the base is nearly fourteen feet. The whole mass rests on the middle of a square even table of stone, corresponding in extent very nearly with the extremity of the rock itself, and composed of the same material. But what makes the balance in this rock still more wonderful is, that this large square smooth insulated stone, which serves for its bed, far from being horizontal, is an inclined plane, sloping at an angle of almost twenty-five degrees; consequently, many bodies that might be balanced on a level ground, must of necessity roll down this leaning stone; yet this huge rock has kept its place for ages. Geologists probably will almost unanimously agree, that the hand of man never interfered in either placing this rock on its present site, or in hewing it into its present form, that it is the work of nature only. The imagination of the tourist indeed has often regarded it as the work of art, and pronounced it to be nothing less than a Druidical altar; and fancy may discern in an adjoining stone the solid basin to receive the blood of the

tainly no place can be imagined more fitted for those priests of the oak and the mountain, who raised their altars upon “every high hill, and underevery green tree,” than Buckstone. And perhaps there is nothing absurd in conceiving that they employed this natural altar, like many others which tradition assigns to the same purpose, in the persormance of their cruel rites. All such inquiries, however, must at last only end in speculation; harmless it may be and amusing, but leading to no satisfactory result.—Saturday Magazine.

PO ETRY.

THE TWO HOMES. w SEEST thou my home? 'Tis where yon woods are waving, : In their dark richness, to the sunny air; Where yon blue stream, a thousand flower-banks laving, Leads down the hill a vein of light—'tis there. "Mid these green haunts how many a spring lies gleami Fringed with the violet, colored by #. ** Ing, My boyhood's haunts, through days of summer, dreaming, {; young leaves that shook with melodies. My home—the spirit of its love is breathing nevery wind that plays across my track; From its white walls, the very tendrils, wreathing, Seem, with soft links, to draw the wanderer back. There am I loved! There prayed for! There my mother Sits by the hearth with meekly thoughtful eye! There my young sisters watch to greet their brother— Soon their glad footsteps down the path would fly. There, in sweet strains of kindred music blending, All the home voices meet at day's decline; One are those tones, as from one heart ascending— There laughs my home—Sad stranger, where is thine? Ask thou of mine ! In solemn peace 'tis lying, Far o'er the deserts and the tombs away; 'Tis where I, too, am loved with love undying, And fond hearts wait my step. But where are they? Ask where the earth's departed have their dwelling, Ask of the clouds, the stars, the trackless air; I know it not, yet trust the whisper telling My lonely heart, that love unchanged is there. And what is home 1 and where but with the living? Happy thou art, and so canst gaze on thine: My spirit feels, but in its weary roving, That with the dead—where'er they is mine. Go to thy home, rejoicing son and brother; Bear in fresh gladness to the household scene: For me, too, watch the sister and the mother,

I will believe—but dark seas roll between. Anonymous.

[ocr errors]

THE DESTRUction of Books.--It is remarkable that conquerors, in the moment of victory, or in the unsparing devastation of their rage, have not been satisfied with destroying men, but have even carried their vengeance to books. The Romans burnt the books of the Jews, of the Christians, and the Philosophers; the Jews burnt the books of the Christians and Pagans; and the Christians burnt the books of the Pagans and the Jews. The greater part of the books of Origen and other Heretics, were continually burnt by the Orthodox party. Cardinal Ximenes, at the taking of Grenada, condemned to the flames five thousand Alcorans. The Puritans burnt everything they found which bore the vestige of Popish origin... We have on record many curious accounts of their holy depredations, of their maiming images, and erasing pictures. Cromwell zealously set fire to the library at Oxford, which was the most curious in Europe. The most violent persecution which ever the Republic of Letters has undergone, was that of the Caliph Omar. After having it proclaimed throughout the kingdom, that the Alcoran contained everything which was useful to believe and to know, he caused to be athered together whatever books could be found in is wide realms, and distributed them to the owners of the baths,

victim, or to cleanse the hands of the sacrificer. Cer

to be used in heating their stoves; and it is said that they employed no other materials for this purpose during a period of six months'

[graphic]

At the death of the learned Peiresc, a chamber in his house filled with letters from the most eminent scholars of the age, was discovered. Such was the dispositon of his niece, who inherited his estates, that, although repeatedly entreated to permit them to be published, she preferred employing them for other purposes; and it was ho singular pleasure to regale herself occasionally with burning those learned epistles, to save the expense of firing !

on the civilization of the eighteenth century could not preserve from the savage and destructive fury of a disorderly mob, in the most polished city of Europe, the valuable papers of the Earl of Mansfield, which were madly consigned to the flames during the disgraceful riots of June, 1780.-Curiosities of Literature.

PREFAcE.—A preface being the porch or the entrance to a book, should be perfectly beautiful. It is the elegance of a porch which announces the splendour of an edifice. I have observed, that ordinary readers skip over these little elaborate compositions. Our fair ladies consider them as so many pages lost, which might better be employed in the addition of a picturesque scene, or a tender letter to their novels. For my part, I always gather amusement from a preface, be it awkwardly or skilfully written; for dulness, or impertinence, may raise a laugh for a page or two, though they become insufferable throughout a whole volume.—Ib.

FIRE Low.—In addressing the multitude, we must remember to follow the advice that Cromwell gave his soldiers, “fire low.” This is the great art of Methodists, “fas estab hoste doceri.” If our eloquence be directed above the heads of our hearers, we shall do no execution. By pointing our arguments low, we stand a chance of hitting their hearts as well as their heads. In addressing angels, we could hardly raise our eloquence too high; but we must remember that men are not angels. Would we warm them by eloquence, unlike Mahomet's mountain, it must come down to them, since they cannot raise themselves to it. It must come home to their wants and their wishes, to their hopes and their fears, to their families and their firesides. The moon gives a far greater light than all the fixed stars put together, although she is much smaller than any of them; the reason is, that the stars are superior and remote, but the moon is inferior and contiguous.—Lacon.

[ocr errors]

EXPLANATION OF WORDS, PHRASES &c. Actus, ME IN vito FActus, NoN Est MEUs Actus.— Lat. (Law Maxim.) “An act done against my will, is not my act.” That is, an act which a person is comp. to perform is not properly his own, being against is own choice. Actus NoN FAcit REUM, Nisi MEN's Est REA.—Lat. (Law Maxim.), “The act does not make a man guilty, unless the mind be also guilty.” For example, if a man kill another unintentionally, he is not guilty of murder. A cuspide corona. “A crown from the spear.” Honor achieved by the sword. Ad cALAmitate M. Quilibet RUMoR v ALEt.—Lat. “Any rumor is sufficient against misfortune,” That is, . a man is unfortunate, it is an easy matter to ruin inn. An captANDUM vulgus.-"To ensnare the vulgar.” As when a demagogue performs an act calculated to please the multitude, without regard to its merits. An deliquium ANIMI-Lat. " Even to sainting.” A Dro et REge.—“From God and the king.” Actum NE AGAs. Lat. from. Terence. Do not labour at what is already sinished

Mormonism ANd the SMALL-Pox.—There having been several cases of small pox in the village of James town, Chautauque county, a committee of citizens was appointed to take measures to prevent its spreading. In their report, the committee state that their efforts to prevent the spread of the disease have been hindered by a sect calling themselves Mormonites, who profess to believe that the disorder will not attack them, neither would they spread it, although they might come in contact with others not protected, even if the small-pox matter covered them. Notwithstanding their belief, one of the Mormons had been seized with the disease, and it was feared that this sect would be the means of scattering the insection, through the county.—Rochester N. Y. Daily Advertiser.

THE PRESIDENT'S TOUR.

The President of the United States reached this city on Wednesday afternoon last, on his tour to the East. An immense concourse of citizens assembled to witness his arrival. It was probably the largest collection ever known in the city. We should suppose it amounted to a hundred thousand. At the time we prepare this article for the press, which is Thursday forenoon, we are unable to say that he has left, because he is still here; but we understand he is to leave on Saturday, the day on which this No. of our paper is dated.

LOCAL AGENTS FOR THE FAMILY MAGAZINE.

Henry G. Woodhull, Rochester N. Y. and vicinity.
Francis Brewer, Springfield, Ms.
H. J. Little, Portland, Me.
J. B. Snowdon & Co. Nashville, Tenn.
John Aiken, Westborough, Worcester Co. Ms.

oNE HUNDRED AGENTs

Could be advantageously employed in different sections of the Union, in obtaining subscribers for this Magazine. It is not of a local character, but is calculated for general circulation; and hence subscribers may as well be obtained in one part of the country, as another. Good encouragement will be given to agents, and a number to the amount of one hundred at least, could be furnished by us with profitable employment.

PUBLISHED At so william STREET.

TERMs. ONE Dollar AND Fifty CENts PER ANNUM, IN ADVAN.cz.

Should an order for the Magazine be received, unaccompanied by advance payment, one number will be sent, showing our terms; aster which, no more will be forwarded till payment shall have been received. Companies of four individuals, sending Five Doll. Ans, current here, free of postage, will be furnished with four copies for one year. Companies of ten, sending to N Dollars as above, will be kino, ten copies. 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. [s’ Schools adopting the Magazine will be supplied at one Doll'AR 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. We would have it distinctly understood, that our terms are not published as a mere matter of course. We shall adhere to them to the very letter, Experience has taught us their necessity. The credit system is the bane, the ruin of periodicals. Prompt payment is absolutely indispensable to their prosperity, nay, to their very existence. Scattered as is their patronage over a wide extent of country, their proprietors, for the want of promptitude on the part of their subscribers, are compelled to resort to loans, and to purchase their paper and hire their printing at a heavy advance. And not unfrequently are they forced to wind up their concerns altogether. Now we view our object to be altogether too important to be jeoparded thus; and we shall therefore require payment in all cases in Advance. Our expenses are heavy, and those who have our paper must pay them, seeing we have no money to throw away. Every reasonable man will at once perceive the porpriety and necessity of these terms. "." Letters should be addressed thus: Editor of the Family Magazine, 222 William Street, New York.

3300k ant job 33rfnting EXECUTED WITH NEATNESS AND DESPATCH AT THE OFFICE OF THE FAMILY MAGAZINE.

[graphic]
[graphic]
[merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

NATUR AL HISTORY.

For once, we defer the continuation of our history till another number, having been unable to lay our hands on certain books containing matter essential to that portion of history on which we are at present treating. For a similar reason, has our correspondent “F.” deferred his continuation of the subject of language. We trust that both subjects will be resumed next week. As a substitute in the present number, we copy largely from Good's Book of Nature in relation to ão portion of Natural History on which we are at present engaged, viz. the human race.

“Both the orang and pongo, which of all the monkey tribes make the nearest approach to the structure of the human skeleton, have three vertebrae fewer than man. They have a peculiar membranous pouch connected with the larynx or organ of the voice, which belongs to no division of man whatever, white or black. The larynx itself is, in consequence of this, so peculiarly constructed as to render it less capable even of articulate sounds than that of almost every other kind of qaudruped: and, astly, they have no proper feet ; for what are so called are, in reality, as directly hands as the terminal organs of the arms: the great toe in man, and that which chiefly enables him to walk in an erect position, being a perfect thumb in the orang-otang. Whence this animal is naturally formed for climbing : and its natural position in walking, and the position which it always assumes excepting when under discipline, is that of allsours; the body being supported on four hands, instead of on four feet as in quadrupeds. And it is owing to this wide and essential difference, as, indeed, we had occasion to observe in our last study, that M. Cuvier, and other zoologists of the present day, have thought it expedient to invent a new name by which the monkey and maucauco tribes may be distinguished from all the rest, and, instead of QUADRUPEDs, have called them QUADRUMANA, or QUADRUMANUALs; by which they are at the same time equally distinguished from every tribe of the human race, which are uniformly, and alone, Biman UAL.

“The influence which cliMATE principally produces on the animal frame, is on the color of the skin and on the extent of the stature. All the deepest colors we are acquainted with are those of hot climates; and all the lightest those of cold ones. In our own country we perceive daily, that an exposure to the rays of the sun turns the skin from its natural whiteness to a deep brown or tan; and that a seclusion from the sun keeps it fair and unfreckled. In like manner the tree-frog (rana arborea) while living in the shade is of a light yellow, but of a dark green when he is obliged to shift from the shade into sunshine. So the nereis lacustris, though whitish under the darkness of a projecting bank, is red when exposed to the sun's rays. And that the larves of most insects that burrow in the cavities of the earth, of plants, or of animals, are white from the same cause, is clear, since, being confined under glasses that admit the influence of solar light, they exchange their whiteness for a brownish hue.

“The same remark will apply to plants as well as to animals; and hence nothing more is necessary to bleach or whiten them, than to exclude them from the light of

day. Hence the birds, beasts, flowers, and even fishes of the equatorial regions are uniformly brighter or deeper tinctured in their spots, their feathers, their petals, and their scales, than we find them in any other part of the world. And hence, one reason at least for the deep jet which, for the most part, prevails among mankind under the equator; the dark brown and copper-colors found under the tropics; and the olive, shifting through every intermediate shade to the fair and sanguine complexion, as we proceed from the tropic of Cancer northwards. Hence, too, the reason why the Asiatic and African women, confined to the walls of their seraglios, are as white as Europeans; why Moorish children of both sexes, are, at first, equally fair, and why the fairness continues among the girls, but is soon lost among the boys. “As we approach the poles, on the contrary, we find every thing progressively whiten; bears, foxes, hares, falcons, crows, and blackbirds, all assume the same common livery ; while many of them change their color with the change of the season itself. For the same reason, as also because they have a thinner mucous web, the Abyssinians are less deep in color than the negro race: for though their geographical climate is nearly the same, their physical climate differs essentially : the country stands much higher, and its temperature far lower. “The immediate mattter of color, as I had occasion to observe more fully in a preceding lecture, is the mucous pigment which forms the middle layer of the general integument of the skin; and upon this the sun, in hot climates, appears to act in a twofold manner; first by the direct affinity of its colorific rays with the oxygen of the animal surface, in consequence of which the oxygen is detached and flies off, and the carbon and hydrogen being set at liberty, form a more or less persect charcoal according to the nature of their union; and next, by the indirect influence which its calorific rays, like many other stimulants, produce upon the liver, by exciting it to a secretion of more abundant bile, and of a deeper hue. I have formerly remarked that this second or colouring layer of the general integument of the skin, differs (as indeed all the layers of the skin do) in its thickness, not only in different kinds of animals, but very frequently in different species, varieties, and even individuals. Thus in our own country we find it more abundant in some persons than in others; and wherever it is most abundant, we find the complexion also of a darker and coarser and greasier appearance, upon a coin. mon exposure to the solar light and heat; and we find also, that the hair is almost uniformly influenced by such increase of colour, and is proportionally coarser and darker. “It is of some consequence to attend to this observa tion, for it may serve to explain a physiological fact that has hitherto been supposed of difficult elucidation. “A certain degree of heat, though less than that of the tropics, appears favourable to increase of stature; and I have already observed, that the tallest tribes we are acquainted with are situated at the back of the Cape of Good Hope. On the contrary, the most diminutive we are acquainted with are those that inhabit the coldest regions or thé highest mountains in the world: such are the Laplanders and Nova Zemblians in Europe, the Samoieds, Ostiacs, and Tungooses in Asia, and the Greenlanders and Esquimaux in America. Such, too, are the Kimos of Madagascar, is the account of these

« PreviousContinue »