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in the plants of our own part of Europe since Glacial or of many of the monocotyledonous leaves - investigated pre-Glacial times.

Schwendener in his classical work. It will be rememb.. The conclusion follows that at any given time, apart that the cordaitean leaves were originally classed as 12 from the relatively short critical periods when changed of monocotyledons, which they closely resemble in fo conditions had to be met, we must expect to find organisins and mechanical requirements. Here there is no seconda in a state of complete adaptation to their surroundings. growth to disturb the lines of a rational construction ; When physical, and especially mechanical, conditions are leaves were of great length and borne on - lofty , steps: in question, such as have practically remained constant requiring a strong mechanical system for their supp? through all geological time, we may reckon on finding and hence we find that they present admirable illustrativi the corresponding adaptive structures essentially the same of engineering principles. at the earliest periods as they are now.

Without pursuing the subject further, it may be add. Hence the attempt to support the Darwinian theory by that other Palæozoic leaves show essentially the : sa the detection of imperfect mechanical adaptations in types of mechanical construction as are found in leaves • Palæozoic plants is wholly futile, as was well shown by corresponding shape and dimensions in the living fora. the late Prof. Westermaier. This author's own point of These few illustrations may suffice to show that, frem view was not that of a Darwinian, but, nevertheless, his an engineering point of view, the plants of the Palæozr conviction that efficient adaptation has always been were just as well constructed to resist the strains to who characteristic of living organisms is a perfectly sound one, their organs were exposed as are their recent successors. thoroughly in harmony both with the principles of Darwin I have elsewhere dwelt on the gradual change in and Wallace, and with the observed facts, as far back, at construction of the wood, correlated with the on-coming any rate, as the palæontological record extends. In par- of secondary growth, and have traced the slow extinciis ticular, Westermaier's contention that the construction of of the old, cryptogamic,” centripetally developed wo the Carboniferous plants followed the laws of mechanical as the newer, centrifugal wood, derived from a cambiut, stability and economy of material, just as is the case in more and more effectually took its place. In the form plants of our own day, is completely confirmed by accurate we have to do with a structure becoming vestigial, but observations on their structure, while an opponent's sup- is interesting to note how the doomed tissue was posed detection of Palæozoic constructions " in direct con- always left in its old age to be a mere pensioner on tradiction to the principles of the engineer" merely showed more active neighbours, but was often employed, wh: that the critic had failed to distinguish between the sup- it survived, on such work as it was still able to do. 1 porting and conducting tissues of the plant. It appears sind, in quite a number of cases, that the central voor to have been characteristic of Palæozoic plants that their had changed its character, and shows by its structure its mechanical tissues were, to a great extent, independent it had become adapted to the storage rather than to the of the wood and concentrated in the outer cortex-the transmission of the water supply, its earlier function no most advantageous position engineering principles. being more conveniently left to the external parts of the For example, the extremely prevalent “ Dictyoxylon " type wood. Such utilisation of vestigial structure appears :: of cortex, in which bands of strong, fibrous tissue, united be a good mark of a high standard of adaptation. to form a network, alternate with the living parenchyma Another interesting case of adaptive specialisation in a enclosed in their meshes, was an admirable mechanical organ which may be regarded as of an old-fashioned typ construction for stems which did not attain any great is to be found in the rootlets of Stigmaria. . The natur thickness by secondary growth.

of these appendages has been much disputed ; last year In the Calamites we find, in young stems, the same we had an interesting discussion on the subject, oppne alternation of fibrous and parenchymatous bands in the by Prof. Weiss. I have used the word " old-fashioned cortex, which is so familiar to physiological anatomists because there is some reason to suppose that these orgar: in the stems of our living horsetails.

were not yet quite sharply differentiated as roots; at ar The great tree-ferns of the later Carboniferous (if ferns rate, there are certain points in which they rather resemb. they were) evidently depended for their mechanical strength modified leaves, though in my opinion the root-character on a stereome or supporting tissue quite distinct from the predominate. Though they may thus be “primitive." vascular system, and for the most part peripherally dis- from the point of view of our current morphological posed, as it should be. Their power of resistance to categories, these organs, as Prof. Weiss has discovered bending strains was no doubt greatly increased by the show a remarkable. adaptive mechanism in the presener dense external envelope of strongly constructed adventitious of strands of water-conducting elements running out fror roots, imbedded in the cortex, a mode of support which the central vascular bundle, and terminating in plates of we meet with in some monocotyledons such as Kingia tracheæ placed in the outer cortex. The whole constitutes (Liliaceae) and species of Puya (Bromeliacea) at the an absorptive apparatus more elaborate than anything present day.

found in recent roots, if we except a few highly specialised When we come to the most highly organised of the haustorial roots of parasites. This example seems to me Palæozoic plants, the Cordaitales, constituting the instructive, for it shows how a very high degree of adapta. characteristic gymnosperms of that epoch, we find that tion may co-exist with characters which suggest a the young stems had the same “ Dictyoxylon

what archaic type of organ. tion of the cortex as so common among the con- As an example of adaptation to more special conditions, temporary fern-like seed-plants. The cordaitean wood, I may instance the xerophytic characters shown by various however, often assumed a dense structure, and in many Carboniferous plants, especially in the structure of their cases (as also sometimes occurred among the pterido- | leaves. sperms) there were tangential bands of narrow fibre-like Though there is no question of absolute perfection in wood-elements, suggesting, though not identical with, the nature, it appears that, under given conditions, adaptatioa autumn wood of recent coniferous trees, and no doubt is and was sufficiently perfect to make it very difficu? subserving a special mechanical function.

to put one's finger on any defect. When we think we can The exigencies of secondary growth, when occurring do so, it generally turns out that the defect is in the mind on a great scale, ultimately demand that the mechanical of the critic rather than in the organism criticised. W tissues should be seated in the wood, on the inner side will take a particular case, where the history seems 10 of the growing zone, though this is not the best position give some justification for our fault-finding. on engineering principles. The old plants were, on the The late Palæozoic family Medulloseæ were in some whole, more correct in their methods; their successors respects the most remarkable plants, from an anatomical have more often had to adopt a compromise, which point of view, that we know of. Most of them were sacrifices a certain degree of mechanical efficiency in order plants of great 'size, with rather sturdy stems bearing to facilitate construction.

immense fern-like fronds; the habit altogether must have In the leaves of the Cordaiteæ we meet with remarkably been something like that of a tree-fern, but their reproperfect types of mechanical construction showing various duction was by large seeds, borne on the fronds. To applications of the l-girdle principle, with utilisation of the “ web ” for the protection of the conducting vascular

1 Scott, “The Old Wood and the New " (New Phytologist, vol. i., 1932). strands. The construction is on the same lines as that

2 Megaloxylon, Zalesskya, Lepidodendron selaginoides.









dapt the vascular system of the stem to the supply of the simultaneous with that of the higher families of insects, arge and compound leaves, the polystelic type of struc- which now, at all events, are chiefly concerned in pollina

was assumed, i.e. the single vascular cylinder (still tion. It would be difficult to overestimate the importance o be recognised in some of the earlier members of the of these relations in their effect on the flora of the world.

roup) became broken up, in various ways, into a number if the vegetation of our own epoch appears, on the whole, f distinct cylinders, only connected at intervals. So far definitely more advanced than that of earlier geological he change was in the same general direction as in the periods, this is probably due in a greater degree to the volution of the higher ferns; the fossil family, however, contemporary insect life than to any other cause. vas not content with a complex primary vascular system, I have discussed the subject of reduction in evolution put must have secondary growth as well. Now if you elsewhere,' and will only briefly allude to it here. In have a number of vascular columns in the same stem, each many groups (lycopods, equisetales, cycadophytes) there growing continuously in thickness on its own account, it has been a lowering of the standard of organisation, partly > evident that very special arrangements will be necessary due to direct reduction, partly to the extinction of the o avoid overcrowding. The difficulty was overcome, and higher forms in each group. There are, however, many he Medullosea for some time flourished among the other cases in which the simplification of particular organs lominant families—the Permian formation represents their means a real advance. Golden age. But one is tempted to think that the system Taking into account all the causes which make for was too complicated to last; at any rate, it seems not simplification, the question suggests itself whether, when o have lasted, for these elaborate stems have not been we find a simple type of structure existing at the present ound in any later rocks. Either, as Mr. Worsdell sup- day, there is any presumption in favour of its primitive Joses, the medullosean stem became reduced and simplified nature. It has sometimes been urged that such a preo form the cycadean type of stem of later days, or, as sumption exists (except when direct evidence of reduction I

more_inclined to believe, the family died out can be adduced) on the ground that the general course of altogether. Even here, though we

to have an evolution must have been from the simpler to the more Instance of a cumbrous mechanism, over-reaching itself in complex, a rule, as we have seen, subject to so many elaboration, yet it worked well enough for a time, and it exceptions that, within the limited period to which the would be difficult to say exactly what the conditions were palæontological record extends, it has practically no hat led to its being superseded.

validity. My own conviction is that in such cases there The hypothesis of " a gradual development from the is no presumption of primitiveness at all, and that we simpler to the more complex " is not borne out by the should demand very strong evidence before admitting that facts of palæobotany-the real

of events a given simple structure is primitive. Of course, it may Infinitely niore involved. On a general view, as Darwin happen that a primitive simple type, or at least an old rimself recognised, "the geological record does not extend simple type, may have survived to our own day; this may far enough back to show with unmistakable clearness have been the case in decaying families, where the less that within the known history of the world organisation advanced members have had the best chance of evading has largely advanced.” 1

This wise saying has been too the competition of ascendant races; but, on the whole, it often overlooked by those who have tried to popularise is very unlikely that, among all the changes and chances evolution—it is eminently true of the geological history of the world's history, a really primitive simplicity should of plants. Though there is no doubt a balance on the have been preserved. “The eternal ages are long," and side of advance, due chiefly to the increasing complexity there has been time enough for many ups and downs on of the inter-relations among the organisms themselves, i every line of descent. the general progress since Palæozoic days is by no means The subject of reduction, so essential a clue in any so great as has often been assumed, and we may be attempt to trace the course of evolution, suggests a refersure that as our knowledge of the older plants increases ence to the question of the simpler angiospermous flowers. we shall come to form a still higher estimate than we do While the older morphologists were wont to interpret such now of their adaptive organisation.

flowers (e.g. those of Aroideæ, Piperaceæ, Cupuliferæ) as It has been alleged that it is the fact of the gradual reductions from more “perfect types, there has been a appearance of higher forms which enables us to determine tendency in more recent times to accept the simpler flowers the relative age of strata by their fossils. So far as plants as primitive structures from which more elaborate forms are concerned, this statement is only true to a very limited have been evolved. Quite lately, however, a reaction has extent. A fossil angiosperm, no doubt, would be evidence set in, due to the discovery, by Dr. Wieland of the of an age not earlier than the Cretaceous, but, on the wonderful bisexual Powers of the Mesozoic cycadophyta, other hand, a lycopod of much higher organisation than which are constructed on the same plan (though, of course, at present would establish a strong

presumption of with many differences in detail) as the more perfect angioPalæozoic age; so would the higher forms of the equise- spermous flowers, such as those of Magnoliaceæ. If the tales; a cycadophyte with a fructification far more elaborate angiospermous flower was derived from a source allied to than that of recent Cycadaceæ would afford sure proof the Bennettiteæ, its evolution, as suggested by Wieland, that the bed containing it belonged to the Lower Mesozoic. must have been essentially a process of reduction. I only

Of course, much depends on the meaning we give to wish to point out that this view is not inconsistent with the words higher” and “lower." If by “higher the great relative antiquity of simple and, ex hypothesi, mean nearer to the recent types, then it is merely a truism reduced forms, for which, in the case of the Amentiferæ, to say that the higher forms are characteristic of the there seems to be good geological evidence. Reduction later rocks; but if by “higher we mean more elaborately appears to have often been a rapid, indeed a comparatively differentiated, then the statement quoted is, in any general sudden, change, as shown by the frequent occurrence of sense, untrue. If, again, we imply by the word “higher much-simplified forms in the same family in which the more perfectly adapted to the existing conditions, then it prevailing structure is typically complete. It appears quite would be very difficult to prove any advance, for, as I probable that some groups with very simple flowers, though have endeavoured to show, adaptation has in every age primitive,” may be very ancient, tracing their origin been fully adequate in relation to the then conditions. If from forms which in quite early days underwent reduction organisms have grown in complexity, it is only where the (as a means of specialisation) from the highly developed conditions of their life have become more complex.


flowers which probably characterised the first autonomous most striking examples of high organisation in relation to angiosperms. organic environment are presented by the characteristic The tentative and somewhat fragmentary observations modern subkingdom, the angiosperms, in the evolution of which I have here stated tend to the following conwhich, as Saporta pointed out, insect fertilisation has been clusions : the chief determining factor, leading to an infinite variety (1) That at all known stages of the past history of in the special adaptations of the flower, and no doubt plants there has been a thoroughly efficient degree of indirectly affecting the mode of life of the whole plant. adaptation to the conditions existing at each period. The advent of the angiosperms seems to have been almost

1 “Darwin and Modern Science." XII. The Palæontological Record. II. Origin of Species," sixth edition, r. 308.

| Plants. (1969.)





(2) That the characters of plants, having always been employers of labour, of labour organisations, the Pals as highly adaptive as they now are, natural selection Services, local education authorities, teachers of all grza appears to afford the only key to evolution which we at inspectors of schools, and persons specially interested present possess, for all periods covered by the palæonto- philanthropy. The volume available, with its careful or logical record.

sideration of every aspect of the problem, brings hz. (3) That this record only reveals a relatively short section forcibly to the reader its complexity and importance, 3-4 of the whole evolution of plants, during which, though we hope to deal more fully with the whole question is there has been considerable change, there has not been, future issue. Here we will only express satisfaction on the whole, any very marked advance in organisation the views of enlightened educationists are being brou except in cases where the conditions have become more prominently into public view by reports such as that beer complex, as shown especially in the floral adaptations of us. The resolutions as to leaving age and continus angiosperms.

schools contained in the report of the Education Commons (4) That simple forms existing at the present day are, of the British Science Guild (NATURE, January 28, * as a rule, of a reduced rather than a primitive nature, Ixxix., p. 382) receive substantial support from the C but that such reduction may have often set in at sultative Committee's conclusions, and it may be hope relatively early stage of evolution, and is, therefore, con- that action will be taken before long in the direction sistent with a considerable degree of antiquity in the dicated by them. Most of the German States have ca: reduced forms.

pulsory continuation schools, and Scotland was placed

the same position by its Education Act of last year. UNIVERSITY AND EDUCATIONAL remains for England to adopt a like standard of educatiors" INTELLIGENCE.

efficiency for its children. DR. C. G. Barkla, demonstrator and assistant lecturer On the vote of 13,648,7921. for the expenses of the Boz? in physics at the University of Liverpool, has been of Education, Mr. Runciman, President of the Board, ma.. appointed professor of physics in King's College, London, a statement in the House of Commons last week revieri in succession to Prof. Harold A. Wilson, F.R.S., who has the state of education in the country, Dealing i accepted an appointment in McGill University, Montreal. technical education, the Minister spoke hopefully. It has Mr. P. H. Kirkaldı has been appointed an assistant pro- been, he said, the object of the Board of Education : fessor in chemistry in the same college.

make technical education more practical, with a clos Harvard has this vear conferred only one honorary bearing on the duties likely to be required from the young doctorate of science, The recipient is Mr. S. F. Emmons, men and women who pass through technical classes. of the U.S. Geological Survey. The University has con- agriculture there is one remarkable fact, namely, ferred upon its late president, Dr. C. W. Elioi, not only garden classes in elementary schools have been enormous the honorary LL.D., but the honorary M.D. “It has not on the increase, and during the last few years the nucubre been our custom, said the new president, Prof. Lowell, of these classes which are now carried on in these schorz " to .confer the degree of Doctor of Medicine honoris has been trebled. There has been considerable developmen causa, but an exception is fitting in the case of one who, in technical classes which can be attended by those partie in the opinion of professors of medicine, has accomplished intend to enter on an agricultural career, by young farme more for the progress of medical education in this country and young labourers who at the present time have than any other living man, Charles William Eliot. Not spend long and laborious days in the fields or farmhouse in its buildings alone, but also in the instruction and but who are prepared to devote one or two evenings research within its walls, he found our medical school week to the specialised training which can be provided brick and left it marble." At Vale the honorary D.Sc. technical classes. The cumulative effect of technical train has been conferred on Profs. E. W. Morley, W. T. Sedg. ing on the young men and women of our country mx wick, and E. H. Moore--a chemist, a biologist, and a

show itself sooner or later. The great employers have mathematician respectively.

been giving help, said Mr. Runciman, in many parts A FOURTH scries of lectures on scientific microscopy is to

the country to those who organise the technical schools be held at the institute for microscopy of the University Messenger boys, for instance, are induced more and more of Jena from October 11-16 next. Prof. H. Ambronn will

to take advantage of the classes in the evening. Sos give two lectures, the first on Abbe's theory of the forma

great employers, like the General Post Office, not only tion of the microscopic image, and the second on the give direct inducement to their messenger boys. but put a method of testing objective systems. Dr. H. Sieden topf certain amount of pressure on them to take advantage also will lecture twice, dealing with dark-ground illumina- classes, and many emplovers all over the country have made tion and ultramicroscopv. Dr. A. Köhler's two lectures it a condition of service in their works or their great buc. have for their subjects photomicrography : (a) projection of

ness establishments that the boys should attend a certain the image on the plate, !h) illumination of the object with

number of classes every week. The inspectors of the transmitted and incident light, and photomicrographv with

Roard are not only taking a keen interest in the curriculum, ultra-violet light. In connection with each lecture suitable

but they are also acting as missionaries in what is one o practical work has been arranged, and demonstrations also

the most useful forms of educational work initiated during will he provided. Anolication for admission to the lectures

the last few years. In concluding his speech, Mr. Runr. should be made to Dr. Ehlers, Tena, Reethovenstr. No. 14,

man pointed out that we still have nothing but an old, A fifth series of lectures will be held from March 7-12,

temporary building in which our valuable science collection 1910, in the anatomical institute of the Leipzig University.

is housed, and he expressed the hope that it may be The first volume of the report on attendance, compulsory better building in which it may be exhibited, and to gira

nossible in the near future to give this great collection 3 or otherwise, at continuation schools, prepared by the Consultative Committee for the Board of Education, was

to those who have lent or given to that museum published (Cd. 4757) a few days ago. The evidence on

security that the objects which they have given will be which the recommendations of the committee have been

well preserved and wel! exhibited. based will be issued later as a separate volume. The com- The new engineering buildings of the University of mittee was instructed to consider, among other matters, Manchester were opened by Sir Alexander Kennedy or “ whether any means, and if so what, can be devised, in July 15. The general scheme comprises four adjacent respect of rural areas and of urban areas respectively, for buildings; the main block, a three-storied building, con: securing (i.) that a much larger proportion of bovs and tains the lecture rooms, tutorial rooms, drawing offices, girls should on leaving the public elementary school com- private 'rooms, and research room. The hydraulic and mence and continue attendance at evening schools than testing laboratory covers the space at the back of this at present do so, and (ii.) that emplovers and other persons building, and connected to it by a covered way are the or borlies in a position to give effective help shall co- thermodynamic laboratories and the workshop. Principal operate in arranging facilities for such attendance on the Hopkinson presided at the opening ceremony, and in the part of their employees, and in planning suitable courses course of his remarks pointed out that the example set bo and subjects for the schools and classes." The witnesses the Owens College in 1866, in providing for the professional examined by the committee included representatives of l education of engineers, has been followed by all the


important universities in the country. During his speech 1,000,000 per second) used in wave-telegraphy. Two Sir Alexander Kennedy made it clear that the old system wave-meters (A and B) were tested, both being of the type of apprenticeship has become inadequate. The function of consisting of a series of self-inductance coils used singly the laboratory, he said, is to try to let a man learn by (L) in series with a variable air-condenser (K) and a thermohandling, experiment, and measurement the nature of the ammeter, the reading of K being obtained by altering the materials with which he will have to deal later. The capacity until the circuit shows resonance with the working extraordinarily rapid progress which has been made in circuit. The coils of wave-meter (A) were wound with mechanical and electrical engineering during the last solid wire, those of (B) with stranded wire (7/36s), each generation has been largely due, Sir A. Kennedy thinks, strand being separately insulated. The absolute value of to the good training all over the country of the men who the frequency was determined by photographing sparkhave to carry out the details of the work. On the part trains in the primary circuit by means of a rotating mirror of colleges and universities, he continued, there is a running at a constant and accurately measured speed. The tendency to attempt to make students do a great deal too value of the frequency deduced from the measured values much. While it is necessary that an engineer shall have of K and L with wave-meter (B) were in close agreement a knowledge of a great many things before he gets to with the actual frequency deduced from the spark-photohis profession, he cannot acquire much knowledge in three graphs. With wave-meter (A) the agreement was naturyears. It may be hoped that a strong university with ally not nearly so close, but was much improved when the a strong man' at its head will draw a very distinct line values of the self-inductances of the solid wire coils were in some common-sense fashion in defining what knowledge corrected to the high-frequency values by the formulas of shall be imparted to the students. Sir William Mather Heaviside and L. Cohen.-An electromagnetic method of proposed a vote of thanks to Sir A. Kennedy, and expressed studying the theory of and solving algebraical equations of his disappointment at the neglect displayed by the large any degree : Dr. Russell and Mr. Alty. The problem of engineering firms of the Manchester district in connection finding the roots of an algebraical equation of the nth with the higher development of engineering science among degree is identically the same as that of finding the posiyoung men. The success of engineering in the future will tions of the “neutral points," that is, the points where the depend almost wholly on elements quite different from those resultant force due to the earth and definite currents in n which have distinguished it in the past. The next genera- long vertical wires is zero. The r wires are arranged at tion of engineers must be trained carefully by methods any convenient distances apart in a plane which is at right enabling them, above all things, to combine economy with angles to the magnetic meridian. The currents in the efficiency. The technical school must perforce stop short wires are then adjusted to certain values which are readily of what may be called the practical part of applying found by the methods of partial fractions. If x, and y, be machinery in the best possible way. To ensure success, the coordinates of one of these neutral points measured with there must, he continued, be a certain number of young reference to certain definite axes, x, y,v-i is a pair of students devoting themselves to laboratory work, and this roots of the original equation. All the real roots lie on the extension of Manchester University must prove of great axis of X which cuts the wire at right angles. The posiusefulness.

tions of the neutral points thus determine all the roots,

real and imaginary, of the given equation. The peculiar SOCIETIES AND ACADEMIES.

advantage of the method is that it is easy to see, in many LONDON.

cases almost at once, what effect varying the value of the Physical Society, June 25.-- Dr. C. Chree, F.R.S., presi: equation. The sine condition in relation to the coma of

coefficient of any power of x will have on the roots of the dent, in the chair.-A transition point in zinc amalgam : optical systems : S. D. Chalmers. The condition for the Prof. H. S. Carhart. The paper gave the preliminary correction of coma in a centred optical system is the wellresults of an investigation which has for its primary object known sine condition. This has been proved by Clausius, the determination of the heat of dilution of zinc amalgams. Helmholtz, Hockin, and others, and the importance of this This heat of dilution is negative, that is, the dilution of

condition in the design of optical systems has been pointed zinc amalgam by the addition of mercury absorbs heat. In

out by Abbe, Steinheil, Conrady, and others. The present the course of the experimental work, which was conducted

paper shows how to obtain the relation between the coma of by Dr. W. D. Henderson, phenomena so extraordinary

a system and the errors in the sine condition.-A new Féry were encountered that the concentration at which they thermo-electric calorimeter : Dr. C. V. Drysdale. This occur was called a transition point in zinc amalgam. The form of calorimeter can be used continuously, and permits method employed was electrical, by means of a concentra- the value of the gas produced in a gas-works or producertion cell, the only difference between the two legs of the plant to be watched from time to time.-An instrument cell of H-form being in the concentration of the amalgam for measuring the strength of an intense horizonta! magcomposing the electrodes.—A method of producing an in- netic field : F. W. Jordan. The method consists in tense cadmium spectrum, with a proposal for the use of measuring directly the transverse force on a conductor mercury and cadmium as standards in refractometry: Dr. traversed by a current in a direction at right angles to the T. M. Lowry. Of the twenty-six wave-lengths that have field.—A method of determining the sensibility of a been used in the study of rotatory dispersion (Proc. Roy. balance: Prof. Poynting.-The balance as a sensitive Soc., Ixxxi., p. 472, November 19, 1908) the following barometer : Mr. Todd. seven have been found to be the most suitable for general

Challenger Society, June 30.- Dr. A. E. Shipley in Li

the chair. -Colour changes in tropical sea perches from Cd Na Hg Cd Cd Hg

the Bermudas : C. T. Regan. In one case an individual 6708 6438 5893 5461 5086 4800 4358

specimen exhibited successively the coloration of three soIn refractometry it has been customary to use the series :- called species.”—Recent observations of Prof. Otto Ha Na HB


Pettersson on tide-like movements in deep water : Dr. 6560 5893 4861 4341

H. R. Mill. Daily observations on temperature and salinity This series has the disadvantages (1) that the chief standard were made at close intervals from surface to bottom in Na 5893 is a doublet, and (2) that the other three lines the Gullmar Fjord, when covered by ice, between are of such weak intensity that they are useless for the January 30 and March 25 of this year. The effect was majority of optical measurements. It is therefore urged that of an invasion of sea water from the Skagerack twice that-in view of the readiness with which the mercury and in a lunar period, followed by a withdrawal of the sea cadmium spectra can now be produced—the mercury green water and the filling up of the upper part of the fjord line should be generally adopted in place of sodium as chief with brackish land water in rhythmical succession, and standard in optical work of all kinds, and that the hydrogen

Prof. Pettersson inclined to the belief that these movelines should be abandoned even as secondary standards in ments were of tidal origin. Dr. Mill pointed out that favour of the series of wave-lengths set out above.- Sir John Murray and he had shown that similar effects of The measurement of wave-length for high-frequency elec- a non-periodical kind were produced in sea- and freshtrical oscillations: A. Campbell. The experiments had water lochs of Scotland by the action of wind, and that for their object the calibration of wave-meters for the he had shown analogous effects on the Atlantic coast of measurement of the high frequencies (200,000 up

the Hebrides.

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A rapid method for testing plants for hydrocyanic ac! Academy of Sciences, July 12.-M. Émile Picard in Marcel Mirande. Any cyanogenetic plant, submitted the chair. - The nature of the change undergone by crystals the action of chloroform vapour, at once gives off hydro of heptahydrated sodium sulphate in contact with crystals cyanic acid. The latter can be detected by the uur of the decahydrate : D. Gernez. From an examination of Guignard's picrate paper.-The action of urohypotens' the phenomena occurring with supersaturated solutions of on the arterial pressure : J. E. Abelous and E. Bordier sodium sulphate, sodium chromate, acetate, and hypo- - The proof of alimentary glycosuria in epileptics: M sulphite, it is concluded that the opacity of the lower Florence and Clement.-The hypotensive action of ser.. hydrated crystals in contact with the higher hydrate is due

from a dog which had been deprived of its suprar to penetration of crystals of the higher hydrate into the capsules : Jean Gautrelet and Louis Thomas.crystalline network of the lower. There is no evidence for chemical composition of ox bile : N. A. Barbieri.-TW any change in the proportion of water in the crystals first life of yeast after fermentation : E. Kayser and formed.- Observations on the nature and origin of the

Demolon.—The action of the ultra-violet rays on cider ist gases which form in volcanic fumaroles or which emerge

fermentation : MM. Maurain and Warcollier.- Expo from the craters of old volcanoes : Armand Gautier. The

mental reproduction of exanthematic typhoid in the ap: gases from the old crater of Agnano, near Naples, consist

Ch. Nicolle.-The chemical effects of immersion in water almost entirely of carbon dioxide (96 per cent. to 98 per

of the quartz mercury-vapour lamp: J. Courmont, Th. ccnt.), together with traces of methane and a little more Nogier, and A. Rochaix. No ozone is produced wh: than i per cent. of nitrogen. The latter contains argon,

would account for the observed bactericidal effects, and neon, and helium, and possibly the other argon gases.-

other chemical change of importance could be detected The influence of anæsthesia on the decomposition of certain Symmetry of organs in some species of Syllis : A glucosides in plants: L. Guignard. Plants of black Michel.-The reactions of some mitochondria : E. Fauré mustard, submitted to the action of chloroform vapour, Fremiet.--The ichthyological fauna of Lake Victori: produce the mustard essence; cooling to the temperature Jacques Pellegrin.-The Silurian of Nova Zembla: 1 of boiling methyl chloride produces the


Roussanof.-The earthquake of Provence, June 11, 1900 Similar observations have been described by M. Mirande Louis Fabry.—The earthquake of July 7, 1909 : Alfr regarding the formation of hydrocyanic acid.--A hæmo- Angot. gregarian of Pituophis melanoleucus : A. Laveran and A. Pettit.-The neutral carbonates of rubidium and cæsium : M. de Forcrand. A thermochemical paper.


PAGE The theory of functions : Henri Lebesgue. A correction of a previous paper.-The singularities of uniform The Dressing of Minerals analytical functions : D. Pompeiu.-Systems of reservoirs :

Dustless Roads, Edmond Maillet.--Orthoscopic telescopes : M. Tschern. Vectorial Graphics ing.-Chemical reactions and ionisation : G. Reboul.

The Recrnstructional Anatomy of the Kidney, Ry The apparatus described is capable of measuring ionisation

R. D. K. over a wide range; details are given of the results obtained Greeks and Hittites. By J. G. in numerous chemical reactions. -Remarks on the preceding Some New

Chemical Books. By J. B. C.

95 paper : A. Gautier.-A method of separating Our Book Shelf:uranium X, and on the relative activity of this substance.

Ladenburg: “Histoire du Développement de la Chimie B. Szilard. The method is based on the addition of lerric depuis Lavoisier jusqu'a nos Jours acetate, ammonium acetate, and acetic acid


Schmid: “ Biologisches Praktikum für höhere uranium solution, and the precipitation of the iron by

Schulen"; Schurig : “Biologische_Experimente heating; uranium X is concentrated in the precipitate.

nebst einem Anhang mikroskopische Technik -The chemical action of the penetrating rays of radium

Garrod : “Inborn Errors of Metabolism."—W. D. H. 96 on water : Miroslaw Kernbaum. Radium rays that

Stone : “Practical Testing of Gas and Gas-meters” had passed through glass decomposed water in accord- Clayton : “A Compendium of Food-microscopy" ance with the equation 2H,O=H,O+H,, both the Letters to the Editor :hydrogen and hydrogen peroxide being determined quanti

Molecular Scattering and Atmospheric Absorption.tatively. An attempt to obtain a similar reaction by

Prof. Arthur Schuster, F.R.S. allowing Röntgen rays to act upon water for 100 hours The Fixation of Nitrogen by Soil Bacteria.-A. D. gave negative results.--The diffusion of ions through Hall, F.R.S. metals : Georges Moreau. The passage of ions through Occasional Unexplained Ringing of House-bells. heated plates of platinum, nickel, iron, and brass has been

Sir Oliver Lodge, F.R.S. studied. A theory of the diffusion has been developed, and Musical Sands.--Rev. Dr. A. Irving

99 an experimental confirmation given.-The action of the Wych Elm Seedlings.--Rosamond F. Shove

99 a ravs on solid dielectrics : Tcheslas Bialobjeski. A study | Popular Natural History. (Illustrated.)

99 of the alteration in the conductivity of sulphur produced The Adamello Group By T. G. B. by the a rays of polonium.—The hydrolytic decomposition Tidal Problems. By F. Stratton of bismuth bromide : René Dubrisay. There is only one Prof. Simon Newcomb. By Sir Robert S. Ball, bismuth oxybromide produced in this reaction: a rise of F.R.S.

103 temperature does not appreciably affect the hydrolytic dis


IOS sociation of bismuth bromide.-A proposed solution for the

Our Astronomical Column :equation of condition relating to the calculation of atomic Stationary Meteor Radiants weights : G. D. Hinrichs. The author points out that Comparison of the Spectra of the Centre and Edge his equation of condition is diametrically opposed to that

of the Sun's Disc. given by L. Dubreuil.—The cementation of iron by carbon Changes of Form in Sun.spots in a

vacuum : Léon Guillet and Ch. Grifnths.—The Mutual Occultation of Jupiter's Second and Fourth extraction of lutecium from the gadolinite earths : G. Satellites Urbain, MM. Bourion and Maillard. For the final The Yerkes Observatory purification from thorium and scandium, the oxides were Prominence Obsei vations converted into the chlorides by heating them in the vapour

Scientific Work in India of sulphur chloride. This method of fractional sublimation Position Finding without an Horizon. (With of the chlorides promises to be of service in the separation Diagrams.) By Prof. C. V. Boys, F.R.S. of the rare earths.-The condensation of isopropyl alcohoi The Position of Higher Education

113 with its sodium derivative : formation of methylisobutyi. Association of Economic Biologists carbinol and dimethyl-2 : 4-heptanol-6 : Marcel Guerbet.- The Museums Association The iso-indogenides : A. Wahi and P. Bagard.—The pro- Adaptation in Fossil Plants. By Dr. D. H. Scott, duction of peat on the rocks of tropical Africa : Aug. F.R.S. ..

115 Chevalier.The ferment of belladonna : C. Gerber.-The University and Educational Intelligence influence exerted by certain vapours on .plant cyanogenesis. Societies and Academies



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