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pigmy people may be depended upon, whose native region is stated to be the central and highest tracts of the island, forming, according to Commerson, an elevation of not less than sixteen or eighteen hundred fathoms above the level of the sea. “A multitude of distinct tribes have of late years been discovered in the interior of Africa, in the midst of the black tribes, exhibiting nothing more than a red or copper hue, with lank black hair. And, in like manner, around the banks of the lower Orinoco, in Mexico, where the climate is much hotter, there are many clans of a much lighter hue than those around the banks of the Rio Negro, where it is much cooler; and M. Humboldt has hence ventured to assert, that we have here a full proof that climate produces no effect upon the colour of the skin. Such an assertion, however, is far too hasty; for he should first have shown that the thickness of the mucous web or colouring material is equally abundant in all these instances. For if it be more abundant (as it probably is) in the tribes that are swarthiest, we have reason to expect that a swarthier colour will be found where there is an equal or even a less exposure to solar light and heat; and we well know that the hair will vary in proportion.” “The effects of DIFFERENT KINDs of Food upon the animal system are as extensive and as wondersul as those of different climates. The fineness and coarseness of the wool or hair, the firmness and flavour of the flesh, and in some degree the colour of the skin and extent of the stature, are all influenced by the nature of the diet. Oils and spirits produce a peculiar excitement of the liver, and like the calorific rays of the sun, usually become the means of throwing an overcharge of bile into the circulation. Hence the sallow and olive hue of many who unduly addict themselves to vinous potations, and who at the same time make use of but little exercise. And hence also the dark and dingy colour of the pigmy people inhabiting high northern latitudes, to whom we have just adverted, and whose usual diet consists of fish and other oils, often rancid and offensive. Though it must be admitted that this colour is in most instances aided by the clouds of smoke in which they sit constantly involved in their wretched cabins, and the filth and grease with which they often besmear their skins. And hence, also, one cause of their diminutive stature; the food they feed on being unassimilating and innutritive. Swine and all other animals fed on madder-root, or that of gallium verum, or yellow-ladies-bed-straw, have the bones themselves tinged of a deep red, oryellow: and M. Huber, of Lausanne, who has of late years made so many valuable discoveries in the natural habits of the honeybee, has proved himself able, by a difference in the food alone, as indeed Debraw had done before him, # to convert what is commonly, but improperly, called a neuter into a queen bee. “It would be superfluous to dwell on the changes of body and perceptive powers produced in the animal system by a di FFERENCE IN THE MANNERs AND customs. We have the most striking proofs of this effect in all the domestic animals by which we are surrounded. Compare the wild horse with the disciplined; the bison with the ox, which last is usually regarded as the bison in a state of tameness; and the Siberian argali with the sheep which is said to have sprung from it. Compare the modern Romans with the ancient; the low cunning and servile temper of too many of the Greek tribes of the present day, that still bend to and kiss the Ottoman rod, with the noble courage and patriotic enthusiasm of their forefathers, who drove back the tyrant of Persia and his million of men, across the Hellespont, and dashed to pieces the proud bridge with which he boasted of having conquered the billows. “It is in reality from long and deeply rooted habit alone that the black, red, and olive colour of the Ethiopian,
American, and Mogul is continued in the future lineage for so many generations after their removal into other parts of the world; and that nothing will, in general, restore the skin to its original fairness but a long succession of intermixtures with the European variety. It is a singular circumstance, that the black colour appears to form a less permanent habit than the red or olive; or, in other words, the colour chiefly produced by the action of the sun's colorific rays, than that produced by its calorific rays: for the children of olive and copper-coloured parents exhibit the parental hue from the moment of birth; but in those of blacks it is usually six, eight, or ten months before the black pigment is fully secreted. We also sometimes find this not secreted at all, whence the anomaly of white negroes; and sometimes only in interrupted lines or patches, whence the anomaly of spotted negroes; and we have seen a few rare cases of negroes in America who, in consequence of very severe illness, have had the whole of the black pigment absorbed and carried off, and a white pigment diffused in its stead. In other words, we have instances of a black man being suddenly bleached into a white man. These instances are indeed of rare occurrence: but they are sufficient to show the absurdity of the argument for a plurality of human stocks or species, from a mere difference in the colour of the skin; an argument thus proved to be altogether superficial, and which we may gravely assert to be not more than skin-deep. “It is in consequence of this power in the system, of secreting a dark-coloured pigment under particular circumstances, that we not unfrequently see the skin of a very fair woman, when in a state of pregnancy, changed to a deep tawny, and almost to a black; and it is hence that the black pigment of the eye is perpetually maintained and replenished.” “Dr. Wells gave a paper to the Royal Society, which was read April 1, 1813, containing an account of a woman (Harriet Tresh) whose left shoulder, arm, and hand are as black as the blackest African's, while all the rest of the skin is very white. She is a native of Sussex, and the cause she assigns is, that her mother set her foot upon a lobster during her pregnancy.’ So that we have not only instances of blacks being suddenly bleached, but of whites being made more or less black. In like manner, confined birds sometimes become wholly black, and are said to become so occasionally in the course of a single night. So the male kestrel, from being barred on the tail feathers, becomes wholly ash-coloured except at the end ; and the heron, gull, and others, whose tail is white when matured, are for the first years mottled. “But it is probable that a very great part of the more striking distinctions we have noticed, and almost all the subordinate variations occasionally to be met with, are the result of a MoRBID AND HEREDITARY AFFEction. The vast influence which this recondite but active cause possesses over both the body and the mind, is known in some degree to every one from facts that are daily presenting themselves to us. We see gout, consumption, scrofula, leprosy, propagated on various occasions, and madness and satuity and hypochondriacal affections as frequently. Hence the unhappy race of Albinoes, and whole pedigress of white negroes; hence the pigmy stature of some families, and the gigantic size of others.”
With the foregoing extracts, we conclude sor the present week on this subject. We have more matter of a similar nature on hand, all calculated to show, in a most striking manner, the ignorance and folly of those who assert, that the different classes of mankind cannot be of one origin, and who, strangely enough, at the same time contend, that there is no radical difference between man and other animals. They are facts that, we presume, will be to those individuals both new and astounding— new from their ignorance, and astounding from the blow which those facts will give to their speculations.
... "Camper's Lect, on Comp. Anat, in regard to the art of Draw
This goddess, the personification of love, was fabled to have sprung from the soam of the sea at her birth, and, instead of a cradle, she was laid in a shell, like a pearl, and gently wasted by Zephyrus to the shores of the island of Cythera. The Greeks called her Aphrodite, from Aphros, (foam.) and also Anadyomene. When she stepped on shore, the flowers sprung up under her feet wherever she trod. She was committed for her education to the Horæ, or hours.
Venus is represented as a woman of beautiful form, in slight and graceful apparel, and bound with a girdle or cestus, to which surprising charms and qualities were ascribed. Her chariot was of carved and gilded ivory, drawn by swans, doves, or swallows, agreeably to her pleasure. Cupids and Graces surrounded her; and often is seen following her the adored Adonis, the dearest of her earthly lovers. She is sometimes painted, in allusion to her birth, like a young virgin with a green veil, drawn through the glittering foam and yielding waves of the sea in a shell chariot, her head crowned with roses, and a silver mirror in her hand.
After her ascension to the celestial regions, and the fierce contests among the gods in regard to her had subsided, she was given in marriage to Vulcan—yet she was anything but a crown of honor to her husband. Beauty indeed she was, but she was frailty too.
Ancient Mythology recognized as many as three or four Venuses—two of them, however, were the most prominent—and it is even questionable whether these two might not have been the expressions of the varying qualities of the only true Venus. Of these two, the elder was called Venus Urania, or the heavenly Venus; the other was very earthly and licentious in every qualification of mind and body.
The names by which Venus was known among the Grecians and Romans were numerous. She was called Cytherea from her birthplace. She was called Hetaira, (Latin Amica,) by the Athenians, because she joined lovers together. She was called Armata (armed) on account of a victory gained by Spartan women. She was called by the Roman women Barbata, (bearded,) because
that when a disease had caused their hair to fall off, they prayed to Venus, who caused this ornament, so dear to women of all nations, to grow again. With heartsfull of gratitude, they made an image of Venus with plenty of hair, a comb in her hand, and threw in gratuitously a fine bushy beard, which would not now be considered very ornamental to a lady. She was called Ridens, (laughing or laughter-loving.) from the rosy smiles that ever played upon her countenance. Beside these, she had many names derived from the places where she was chiefly worshipped—Cyprus, Paphos, Erycina, Idalia, from whence are derived the names of the Cyprian, the Paphian, the Erycinian, and the Idalian Venus. She had other names descriptive of her qualities—Verticordia, (heart-changing.) Melanis, (concealed.) Marina, (ocean-born.) Apaturia, (the deceiver.) The companions of Venus, the two cupids, Eros and Anteros, and the Graces, are represented by most writers as the children of Venus, by one deity or another. She had not long been a denizen of the upper world, before her love of intrigue and amours became a scandal even for the heathen heaven. She was publicly exposed with Mars, taken in an iron net. She was represented as never having any children by her husband Vulcan—such favors being reserved for *... Bacchus, Mercury, and others. One of the most pathetic of her loves was that of Adonis. He was a beautiful youth, the son of Cinyras, the king of Cyprus. While he was hunting the wild boar, he was gored by its tusks and killed. Alarmed by his dying calls for her aid, Venus flew to his rescue; a thorn entered her foot, and the blood which flowed thence fell upon the white rose, and changed it to its present lovely red. She bewailed him with the deepest excesses of a woman's sorrow, changed his blood, which stained the ground, into the flower Anemone, and obtained of Jupiter the boon that he should return annually from the pale realms of death, that she might enjoy his company. This gave rise to that wide-spread oriental idolatry of weeping for Thammuz, or Daphnis, or Adonis, on certain days in each year. Virgins would go into the wilderness, shriek, beat their breasts, and pluck their hair for his death, and then indulge in transports of joy on account of his restoration. Venus was represented to have great power over the sea. Mariners invoked her aid, and, when saved from furious storms, paid their votive offerings upon her altars. She was the patroness of every pleasure, and it would be a happy circumstance could we except the word licentiousness. But we much fear that her magnificent temples in Paphos, Idalia, and Rome, were the shrines of unholy and unchaste passions. As proof of the sorrow which love sometimes inflicts upon mankind, the decision of Paris is adduced. The goddess of Discord, Iris or Eris, rolled a golden apple, inscribed to the fairest, into the court of heaven. There was an immediate contention among the goddesses, as each one claimed the merits of the inscription. Jupiter himself could not quell the strife, and Paris was chosen umpire. He decided in favor of Venus, and received Helen, the most beautiful woman in the world, as his recompense. Through her, a world of woes came upon his people, and blotted the city of Troy and the Trojan people from the map of the world. The myrtle was sacred to Venus, because she hid herself behind this shrub when she stepped ashore on the island of Cythera. Her most celebrated children were Cupid, Anteros, Hymen, Hermaphrodite, and Æneas, the founder of the Roman nation. The Greeks represented Venus as the highest ideal of female beauty and love. Praxiteles was the first bold sculptor who ventured to carve a naked Venus. The indecency was loudly disapproved, but the surpassing beauty of the performance was an apology. Among painters, Titian excelled in depicting the figure of this goddess. The celebrated statue, called the Venus de Medici, which has attracted the attentiou of the world, was found
The above engraving represents the heavens, in which the Solar System is considered as forming part; and in order to contemplate a spectacle so grand, let us imagine ourselves upon some high elevation, in an open country, where the view is uninterrupted on every side. The best time for this purpose is upon the setting of the sun, when the western sky is saintly illuminated; at which time, we shall see this light fade away by degrees, the darkness increase, night come on, and the sky will appear a vast dome studded with a multitude of brilliant points. These are the stars, which the too strong light of the sun has prevented us from perceiving during the day. The disposition of these stars seems to be immutable; which is essentially the same now as it was in periods the most remote. The different clusters are such in their configurations as the ancients described them when they grouped them together under the name of constellations, and, to assist the memory, associated them with the figures of men, animals, &c. But these stars, while they preserve the same order, are carried round the heavens as by a common motion. Those towards the west decline more and more, and disappear when the sun sets; while others, presenting themselves in the cast, seem to come from beneath the horizon. Rising to different heights in the heavens, they descend again, and set in their turn, like those which preceded them. But is, in our latitude, we place ourselves in such a manner as to have the east on our right, and the west on our left, we shall see, in that part of the heaven which is before us, and which we call north, some groups of stars which seem set; such, sor example, is the
remarkable collection called the “Great Bear". This constellation, and the greater part of those which are found in that part of the heavens, disappear only when their light is lost in that of the sun. They may be seen during the whole of the night, and followed through the lowest part of their course, for they never descend to the horizon. If observed at different times of the night, they will be found to have their positions in the heavens reversed, the natural effect of the rotary movement, which they have in common with all the other stars; and the centre, about which they move, is a point of the heavens situated directly north. The light that appears in the east at the approach of day, soon becomes strong enough to eclipse the stars which have just risen in that direction: the west is now in darkness, and the scene is the reverse of that which happens at the beginning of the night. The light con: tinuing to increase, the stars grow sainter and sainter till they at length disappear, and day sheds its brightness upon every object. The sun now presents itself is seen in the east like the stars; it ascends and passes through the heavens, declines to the west," and disappears in the part opposite to that in which it rose; when all the phenomena of night are repeated in the manner just described. By examining the heavens for a number of nights successively, we observe certain stars change their places with regard to others; passing from one constellation,
* This is the common language made use of in astronomy, but the sun's appearing to rise and set is caused by the revolution of the carth on its axis, once in every twenty-sour hours.
they pass towards another; which, for a few days, is But these small changes at length become apparent, and the stars in which they take place are transferred to different parts of the heavens, on which
account they are called planets, oy wandering stars, to distinguish them from those which preserve the same relative situation, and which are called fixed stars.
Guide to Knowledge.
DRUID'S ALTAR, ISLAND MAGEE.
- ON an eminence near the north-east extremity of Island Magee, County of Antrim, there still remains one of those monuments of the olden time, which antiquaries have distinguished by the name of Druid's altars. According to some authors, the religious rites of our Pagan ancestors were performed on hills or mountains, while others assert they worshipped only in woods or groves on the plains. In illustration of those assertions, we can assure the reader that we have seen those objects in all those situations—on the mountain and in the dale, on the hill and in the wood, on the rock and in the plain. There are other antiquarians, however, who deny that those extraordinary remains were altars, and consider them rather as ancient tombs; and perhaps they were intended for both purposes, for among many ancient nations, their earliest altars were the monuments of the dead. The altar now under consideration consists of six large stones, standing upright, and forming two rows, about two feet asunder, and extending east and west. Four of the stones are on the north side, and two on the south, each stone being fully three feet above ground. On these rests a large flat slab, upwards of six feet in length, pretty smooth on both sides, and nearly two feet thick. The breadth is unequal, its west end being near six feet, but sloping to the cast to about half that breadth. At present,this slab rests only on two stones on the north side, and one on the south; the others seem as if they had crept into the earth, to avoid bearing up this enormous load. From several large stones lying about, and
seen in the adjoining fences, it is alleged that this altar
was formerly encompassed by a circle of stones. In ploughing in the field in which this altar stands, in
1817, a spiral instrument of pure gold 11 inches in
length was discovered; and a few years after, several detached parts of a gold collar, or Torquois, were dug up near the altar. In March, 1824, several spiral goldeu ornaments of the above form, supposed to be armlets.or bracelets for the arms, were found in a rich soil or mould; the largest weighed 526 grains, a lesser one,188 groins. They were turned up by the plough, about three or sour feet from the altar—one of them was of a different structure from the other, and appeared as if two plates were applied to each other. -
in the background of this view, is seen the peninsula of Curran, near the extremity of which stand some ruins of the ancient Castle of Olderleet, about one mile from the town of Larne. It was on this peninsula that Lond Edward Bruce landed with 6,000 men, on the 25th May, 1315, being invited over by O'Neil, and other Irish chieftains, to become king of Ireland.—Dublin Penny Journal.
EDDYSTONE LIGHTHOUSE IN A STORM.
Thrae is scarcely one of our readers, probably, who has not heard of the Eddystone Lighthouse. It is erected on one of the rocks of that name, which lie in the English Channel about fourteen miles S. S. W. from Plymouth. The nearest land to the Eddystone rocks is the point to the west of Plymouth called the Ram Head, from which they are about ten miles almost directly south. As these rocks (called the Eddystone, in all probability, from the whirl or eddy which is occasioned b the waters striking against them) were not very o elevated above the sea at any time, and at high water were quite covered by it, they formed a most dangerous obstacle to navigation, and several vessels were every season lost upon them. It was therefore very desirable that the spot should, if possible, be pointed out by a warning light. But the same circumstances which made the Eddystone rocks so formidable to the mariner, rendered the attempt to erect a lighthouse upon them a peculiarly difficult enterprize. The task, however, was at last undertaken by a Mr. Henry Winstanley, of Littlebury, in Essex, a gentleman of some property, and not a regularly-bred engineer or architect, but only a person with a natural turn for mechanical invention, and fond of amusing himself with ingenious experiments. He began to erect his lighthouse on the Eddystone rocks in 1696, and it was finished about four years after. From the best information which can be obtained, it appears to have been a polygonal (or many cornered) building of stone, and, when it had received its last additions, of about a hundred feet in height. Still the sea in stormy weather ascended far above this elevation. On the 26th November, 1703, the architect was in the lighthouse superintending some repairs, when there came on the most terrible tempest which was ever known in England. Next morning not a vestige of the building was to be seen. It had been swept into the deep, as was afterwards found, from the soundation, not a stone, or beam, or iron-bar remaining on the rock.
Soon after, the Winchelsea, homeward-bound from Virginia, was lost on the rocks, when the greater part of her crew perished. An Act of Parliament was then passed for the building of a new lighthouse, on a lease
which it encountered, particularly one on the 26th of
September, 1744, stood till the 2nd December, 1755. About two o'clock on that morning, one of the three men who had the charge of it having gone up to snuff the candles in the lantern, found the place full of smoke, from the midst of which, as soon as he opened the door, a flame burst forth. A spark from some of the twentyfour candles, which were kept constantly burning, had probably ignited the wood-work, or the flakes of soot hanging from the roof. The man instantly alarmed his companions; but being in bed and asleep, it was some time before they arrived to his assistance. In the mean time he did his utmost to effect the extinction of the fire, by heaving water up to it (it was burning four yards above him) from a tub full which always stood in the place. The other two, when they came, brought up more water from below, but as they had to go down and return a height of seventy feet for this purpose, their endeavours were of little avail. At last a quantity of the lead on the roos having melted, came down in a torrent upon the head and shoulders of the man who remained above. He was an old man of ninety-four, of the name of Henry Hall, but still full of strength and activity. This accident, together with the rapid increase of the fire, notwithstanding their most desperate exertions, extinguished their last hopes, and making scarcely any further efforts to arrest the progress of the destroying element, they descended before it from room to room, till they came to the lowest floor. Driven from this also, they then sought refuge in a hole or cave on the eastern side of the rock, it being fortunately by this time low water. Meanwhile the conflagration had been observed by some fishermen, who immediately returned to shore and gave information. Boats of course were immediately sent out. They arrived at the lighthouse about ten o'clock, and with the utmost difficulty a landing was effected, and the three men, who were by this time almost in a state of stupefaction, were dragged through the water into one of the boats. One of them, as soon as he was brought on shore, as if struck with some panic, took flight, and was never more heard of. As for old Hall, he was immediately placed under medical care; but although he took his food tolerably well, and seemed for some time likely to recover, he always persisted in saying that the doctors would never bring him round, unless they could remove from his stomach the lead which he maintained had run down his throat when it fell upon him from the roof of the lantern. Nobody could believe that this notion was any thing more than an imagination of the old man; but on the twelfth day aster the fire, having been suddenly seized with cold sweats and spasms, he expired; and when his body was opened, there was actually found in his stomach, to the coat of which it had partly adhered, a flat oval piece of lead of the weight of seven ounces five drachms. An account of this extraordinary case is to be found in the 49th volume of the Philosophical Transactions. As there was still more than half a century of their lease unexpired, the proprietors, who by this time had become numerous, felt that it was not their interest to lose a moment in setting about the re-building of the lighthouse. One of them, a Mr. Watson, in whom the others placed much confidence, made application to Lord Macclesfield, the President of the Royal Society,
to recommend to them the person whom he consideredo
most fit to be engaged. His lordship immediately named and most strongly recommeded Mr. Smeaton, who had recently left the business of mathematical in