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of the two races in the treatment of ornament differed made, simply labels his figure “ Schème d'un so widely that in some pages of the “ Book of Mollusque,” which is rather a different thing. Kells," for example, the two can be separated as Dr. Pelseneer's explanation of the torsion of the easily as if they were of different colours. It is odd gastropod body evidently now meets with Prof. Lanto find that Mr. Kermode describes the interesting kester's approval, for it is the only one advanced and crucifixion shown on p. 72 and here reproduced as is reinforced by an additional diagram. "an example of pure Byzantine art." it is nearly pure Celtic, and has no relation, artistic- the shell than in the author's previous writings, and ally, to any Byzantine crucifixion we have ever seen. it is interesting to see Sharp's theory of the progressive The statements, however, throughout the

“Notes

disappearance of the anterior adductor muscle in are in general accurate and restrained, and there is certain successive forms of Lamellibranchs (which was an entire absence of the wild local enthusiasm so often first illustrated by specimens in the Index Hall of the found in books of this particular character. The Natural History Museum) made the subject of illus"Notes ” may be commended as likely to be of great tration, though in the text this disappearance is made use to anyone visiting the island or studying its the cause, instead of the consequence, of the alteration antiquities.

of the body-axis.

One or two other points need further attention. Allusion might advantageously have been made to the

origination of the gill in Cyclas, Teredo, and ScioMOLLUSCAN MORPHOLOGY.1

beretia by perforation of a continuous membrane : also

to the discovery by Dall that Philobrya passes through T! HIS fifth volume of the important “ Treatise,”

glochidium edited by Prof. Ray Lankester, deals with the stage which is Mollusca, and is the work of the one biologist capable

therefore not of doing this group most justice, namely, Dr. Paul confined to the

, Pelseneer. Like its predecessors in the series it treats

Unionidæ.

sh of the subject almost exclusively from the morpholo

The systematic gical standpoint, just such a sufficiency of systematic portion is open matter being added as to justify the title, while it is,

to much critiof course, very far from being, and indeed does not

cism. It does
not differ materi-

in pretend to be, a manual on the phylum.

-pa Some delay has occurred in its appearance, owing given in Dr. Pel

ally from that to the need of translation and revision for the press, which has been carried out by Dr. Gilbert Bourne.

seneer's previous

though pot
The work itself is works,

there is, so to
an expansion of Dr.
Pelseneer's similar

speak,
contribution to Blan- shuffling of the
chard's “ Traité de

cards.

It is a
Zoologie."

The great pity, how-
FIG.1.-Sterogyra mamillata, left side translation is remark-

ever, that the noview, with four embryos in the ovi

menclature has duct em, embryo. From "A Trealise ably well done, and on Zoology."

save in some of the not been brought

opening sentences it up-to-date. This is hard to realise that it was not written in English.

would have preNot but that there are small slips such as “ biannual”

vented such an for “ biennial.” The revision, we suspect, has largely

error as recordconsisted in the importation of new terms, so dearly

ing Zonites

Fig. 2.- Nautilus macromphalus creeping on a beloved of a certain school of biologists, that do not

British.

horizontal surface, anterior view. altogether make for clearness, and are foreign to the of the illustra

The majority

anterior ophthalmic tentacle ; €, eye; ho, hood;

in, infundibulum; pa, nuchal part of the lucid style customary in the author's other writings. tions, which are

mantle ; , 9, 1, posterior ophthalmic tentacle ; The opening paragraph on the “ general description all clear and well

sh, shell. (After Willey.) From "A Treatise

on Zoology." and external characters " of the Mollusca (p. 3) is a case in point. While the statement (p. 20), “ It has

printed, are diabeen shown that in the Cephalopoda hyperpolygyny is of the few pictorial ones most

grammatic, or elucidate structural features, while

those used the rule, and in certain Atlantæ and American Unionidæ, hyperpolyandry,” inspires the not hyper- source, in his article on Mollusca in the eighth

by Owen, without acknowledgment of their critical comment that, without hyperbole, it is hyper- edition the technical. Certainly a glossary will be indispensable greater number of these are now, very properly,

Encyclopædia Britannica. The to the work. One is glad to observe that that mythical monster,

attributed to their rightful authors, but of those still

labelled “From Lankester after Owen” it has the " Archi-” or “ Schematic Mollusc” has dwindled escaped observation that Nos. 71, 134, and 136 are to a shadow of its former self, and now survives solely after Adams, No. 158 after Philippi, and Nos. 66 and in a diagrammatic figure as a "scheme of a primitive mollusc” (Fig. 19). For, as Verril pointed out in

135 are from S. P. Woodward's * Manual,” while the 1896 (Amer. Journ. Sci., series iv., vol. ii., pp. 91-92), Férussac and D'Orbigny's "Histoire.”

well-known figure of Sepia officinalis (No. 299) is from the primitive mollusc is rather to be sought in the

The index would have been more useful had referEarly larval stages, such as the Veliger form. Even now one is tempted to think that the “primitive” has matic parts been included.

ences to the genera cited elsewhere than in the systebeen introduced by the translator, since the author in his previous work, to which reference has already been

All these are, however, minor points, and the fact

remains that malacologists now possess one_of the A Treatise on Zoology." Edited by Dr. E. Ray Lankester, F.R.S.

best-written treatises yet produced in the English Par v. Mollusca, by Dr. Paul Pelseneer. Pp. 305: 301 text illustrations. language on the morphology of the Mollusca. (London: A. and C. Black, 1906.) Price 155. net.

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CYCLES IN CHRONOLOGY.'

formed the calendar he decreed that each fourth year THA HAT the 1260 years understood to be expressed by

should be an intercalary, year, not because he was time, times, and a half” (taking

not aware that the actual length of the year was some to indicate a prophetic year of 360 days each) of Dan.

what less than 3651 days (a question which had been xii. 7, and repeated in Rev. xii. 6 and in Rev. xi. 2

discussed by Sosigenes, who assisted him), but because and xiii. 5 under its equivalent term “ forty and two

he thought it would be a convenient rule and sufficient months” (taking a month as thirty days), was in fact

for all practical purposes.

In this a distinguished an astronomical cycle, was first suggested by Loys de

astronomer of our own day (Prof. Newcomb) agrets Chéseaux in a work published at Paris in 1754, three

with him; and indeed the chief object of the introduc. years after the author's death. But it did not meet

tion of the Gregorian calendar was to bring back the with much attention in England until a small work

date of the vernal equinox to that which it had at

W. T. L. on the subject was published by Mr. W. Cuninghame

the epoch of the Council of Nicæa. in 1834, and it was subsequently more fully explained by Mr. H. Grattan Guinness in his Approaching End of the Age,” which appeared in 1878.

PREVENTABLE DISEASE AND MILITARY Dr. Bell Dawson however, in a pamphlet now before

STRENGTH. us, goes into the matter much more elaborately, using the most recent knowledge of the lengths of the solar Ina letter to the Times (June 6), Mr. St. John and lunar years (by lunar year he means twelve lunar

Brodrick directs attention to the serious diminusynodic months or lunations), and finds a remarkable

tion in the military strength of an army, not to say correspondence between multiples of these which

the terrible loss of life, which ensues in campaigns coincide with those of the number in Daniel. As truism, well recognised by medical men, that the

from diseases which are largely preventable. It is a seven is a perfect number in Scripture, and Daniel mentions three and a half prophetic years (“ time,

soldier has much more to fear from the ravages of

disease than from the bullets of the enemy. Mr. times, and a half ”'), he thinks that the 1260 must be

Brodrick points out that doubled, which makes 2520 lunar years. Now a lunation contains, according to the most modern determinations,

" In South Africa the deaths per 1000 were og from 29,530589 days; 504 of these are equal to 178,601 days disease and 42 from wounds, but the admissions to hospital and 2520 to 893,005 days within about four minutes. were 746 per 1000 from disease and 34 from wounds. In An eclipse-cycle also pointed out, i.e., that 649 solar

other words, about 450,000 were passed through the years are almost exactly equal to 8028 (223 * 36occurred, while the admissions for injuries in action were

hospitals for disease during the war, and 14.800 deaths lunations (the former amounting to 237042. 1853, and

only 22,000." the latter to 237042.0355 days), which is much more accurate than the Metonic cycle.

Dysentery and enteric fever are the great scourges Dr. Bell Dawson carefully notes the different values of an army in the field, and, as was pointed out in an which have been found (observationally and theoreti- article in NATURE (lxxii., p. 431), are largely precally) for the secular acceleration of the moon's mean ventable. That this is the case is proved by the motion; but he seems to have forgotten that though records of the Russo-Japanese War, in which the probably constant or nearly so in amount, its effect, Japanese had a total of some 221,000 killed and when long periods of time are taken into account, varies wounded and 236,000 cases of sickness, a ratio very like the accelerating force of gravity, as was pointed out

different from that which obtained in our own army by Halley, its discoverer, according to the square of in the Boer War. The Japanese have realised to the the number of centuries. As Chéseaux had done full the importance of hygienic measures in the field: before him, he shows the astronomical significance of sanitary corps went on ahead of the main army and the cycle 2300 years in Dan. viii. 14, as well as that chose the camping grounds, supervised the water of the 1260 years before spoken of; but he treats it

supplies, and exercised a rigid sanitary control in all somewhat differently. Chéseaux (whose scheme, we

matters, with the above result. may mention, is explained in the second volume of

Mr. Brodrick suggests one simple remedy :Mr. Chambers's “ Handbook of Astronomy '') took the

“Why should not the admirable body of Army Medical difference between 1260 and 2300 (i.e. 1040) years, and officers who have made sanitary conditions a study educatr showed that 1040 solar years form a period almost combatant officers in the elements of military hygiene? exactly equal to 12,863 lunations, the former amounting Every cadet at Sandhurst or Woolwich should be examined 10 379851.8839 and the latter to 379851.9624 days. But on passing out in a problem which he should grasp as Dr. Bell Dawson takes them as lunar years (or periods easily as tactics or siiategy, since upon it the fighting of twelve lunations) and shows that 1780 (the mean

strength by which he is to win his battles depends. A between 2300 and 1260) lunar years is almost pre

captain before promotion to major might be encouraged cisely equal to 1727 solar years, each exceeding

to get a special certificate which would excuse him from 630773 days by only 0.27 and 0.37 respectively, and

all such training at the Staff College. therefore differing from each other by only 0.10 of a Sir Frederick Treves, in a letter to the Times. day in that time or about 0.006 in a century. It does cordially supports this suggestion, and goes further, not appear that any reference is made to the 1290 advocating that a like knowledge of a more elemenand 1335 days of Dan. xi. 11 and 12. No attempt

tary character should be possessed by the private is made to discuss the terminus à quo (or therefore soldier. ad quem) of Daniel's periods, being beyond the scope In addition it may be added that the formation of of the paper before us, which treats only of the a sanitary corps seems desirable to aid the medical numbers themselves and their accordance with astro- staff, to guard and control the water supplies, and nomical epochs.

the like. At present the Army Medical officer is Dr. Bell Dawson inserts a reflection on the inferior powerless to enforce sanitary measures; although accuracy of the Roman calendar arrangements to responsible, he can give no orders, and can only act those of the Chaldeans and other Oriental nations. through a commanding officer, often junior to himIt is probable, however, that when Julius Cæsar re- sell, who has no technical knowledge. Moreover,

through the Esher Committee, the Director-Genera!. 1 “Solar and Lunar Cyclesimplied in the Prophetic Numbers in the Book of Daniel." By Dr. W. Bell Dawson. Pp. 20.1 (From the Transactions

who formerly had direct access to the Secretary of of the Royal Society of Canada, vol. xi., Section 3.)

State and had a seat on the Army Council, has been deprived of those privileges, the Adjutant-General at PROF. W. F. KOHLRAUSCH, of Hanover, will be the presipresent being practically head of the Medical Depart- dent of the Verband deutscher Electrotechniker for 1906-8. ment. Now that a former Secretary for War' has directed public attention to the matter, it is to be

DR. BERNHARD Mohr, of London, recently presented hoped that those in authority will recognise that medical to the museum of the German Chemical Society 100 letters science is a vital part of military strength, a dictum written by the famous Liebig to Dr. Mohr's father, the whic has for years been preached by the medical pro- late Prof. Friedrich Mohr, of Bonn, during the years 1834 frision,

io 1869.

DR. STUTZER, assistant in the geological institute of the NOTES.

Freiburg (Saxony) Mining School, has been awarded a At the meeting of the council of the Royal Astronomical

grant of 2000 marks by the committee of the Carnegie

sund to enable him to continue his investigations on iron Society, held on Friday last, June 8, the following resolu

deposits in Lapland. tion was unanimously agreed to :-" That the council learn with deep concern of the danger threatened to the Royal Prof. Ludwig BOLTZMANN, the well-known professor of Observatory, Greenwich, from the erection of a large theoretical physics in the University of Vienna, has been electric generating station near the observatory; and desire awarded the prize of the Peter Wilhelm Müller fund of lo represent to the Admiralty at the earliest opportunity Frankfurt a. M. The award consists of an appropriately their conviction of the paramount importance of maintain- worded gold medal and 9000 marks, and is made to the ing the integrity and efficiency of Greenwich Observatory, most brilliant workers in pure science. which has been adopted as the reference point for the whole world." It was further resolved that a copy of this resolu

At the seventy-eighth meeting of the Deutscher Naturtion be forwarded to the First Lord of the Admiralty.

forscher und Aerzte, which will be held this year on

September 16–22 in Stuttgart, there will be an exhibition MR. HALDANE, M.P., Secretary of State for War, will of scientific and medical appliances and subjects as in open the electrical laboratory of the National Physical previous years. The König Karls Hall of the Königlicher Laboratory on Monday, June 25, at 2.45 p.m.

Landesgewerbemuseum has been set apart for the purpose. Al the twenty-fifth annual meeting of the Royal Society

All announcements and communications may be addressed of Canada, recently held at Ottawa, Dr. William Saunders,

to the president of the exhibition committee, Dr. Lampert, the director of the Dominion Government's system of

Archivstrasse 3, Stuttgart, from whom further particulars esperimental farms, was elected president for the ensuing

may be obtained. year, with Dr. S. E. Dawson vice-president.

Prof. Walter Nernst, professor of physical chemistry INVITATIONS have been issued by the Institution of Elec

in Berlin, has declined the opportunity of proceeding to irxal Engineers for a conversazione at the Natural History

Leipzig as the successor of Prof. Ostwald, whose resignaMuseum on Tuesday, June 26, to meet the visiting delegates

tion will take place on September 30. Prof. Nernst was from kindred institutions.

formerly a privatdocent at Leipzig from 1889 to 1891, when

he accepted a professorship in Göttingen University. Prof. K. BIRKELAND, of Christiania, the inventor of the According to the Physikalische Zeitschrift, Prof. Ostwald's only successful commercial process for obtaining nitric acid successor is to be Dr. K. Haussermann, professor of by the direct oxidation of atmospheric nitrogen, will read technological chemistry and director of the applied chemů paper before the Faraday Society about June 26 entitled istry laboratory of the Technical High School, Stuttgart. "Oxidation of Atmospheric Nitrogen by Means of the Electric Arc."

A SPECIAL meeting was held in the Great Hall of the

l'niversity of Athens on May 20 to celebrate the fortieth Much interest was aroused in India some time ago in anniversary of Dr. A. C. Christomanos's appointment as The attempt to introduce the permanganate treatment of professor of chemistry in the University. A large audience, snake bite. In the Central Provinces a large number of including the Greek Minister of Education, the University Sir Lauder Brunton's lancets were distributed last October professors and students, and many of the general public, for use by vaccinators and selected landholders. Several was present.

Dr. A. C. Dambergis, the professor of cuses of successful treatment have been reported to Govern- pharmaceutical chemistry, referring to the great work ment, but unfortunately, says the Pioneer Mail, none of which Prof. Christomanos has done in the forty years, the reports gives sufficient detail to prove that the bites asserted that the greatest has been the pioneer work in were really those of poisonous snakes, and it is therefore the introduction of scientific chemistry into Greece with not possible to form any conclusions as to the value of the the provision for laboratory work in chemistry and the

other sciences, and more particularly in organising so I Party of Birkbeck College zoological students spent

successfully the large chemical department of the Uni"l'hitsuntide at West Mersea, near Colchester, collecting

versity with its laboratory accommodation for 130 students. marine specimens. Owing to the low temperature of the

Prof. Christomanos was the recipient of numerous honours, surface waters the tow-netting expeditions were not very

including several from foreign countries. productive, but many and varied forms of life were brought Dr. RUDOLF KNIETSCH, the director of the Badische up by the trawl and the dredge.

Anilin- und Soda-Fabrik, died on May 28 at the early age The annual conversazione of the Royal Geographical

of fifty-two. From the éloge dedicated to Dr. Knietsch s Society will be held at the Natural History Museum to

memory by the Badische Anilin- und Soda-Fabrik, we learn

that Dr. Knietsch morrow evening, June 15.

born in 1854 in Oppeln, in

Schlesien, From 1876-1880 he studied at the Technical TELEGRAM from Reggio di Calabria states that fairly High School in Berlin, and graduated in 1881 at Jena string earthquake shocks were felt there on June 10 at l'niversity. He was for a short time an assistant in Dr. 2.30 a.m. and 9.45 a.m. At Monteleone, Calabria, two Emil. Jacobsen's private laboratory, and in 1882 entered strong shocks were felt at 2.45 a.m.

the Farbenfabrik von Bindschedler und Busch in Basle,

treatment.

was

were

where he worked at the nitration of dichlorobenzaldehyde extent our patent laws, the lack of cheap alcohol, and and the preparation of chloroindigo. In 1884 he joined the other causes have had a certain amount of influence in Anilin- und Soda-Fabrik. He founded in 1888 the industry the downfall of the English aniline dye industry, but in of liquid chlorine, and devoted himself with zeal to the his opinion the only real cause has been the lack of a man task of modifying the Winkler process of preparing of commanding genius, like Perkin or Nicholson, who sulphuric anhydride. Knietsch read an important com- could discover a colour, make it, and sell it. Prof. R. munication on the results of this work before the German Meldola, F.R.S., in proposing The Visitors,” remarked Chemical Society in 1901. For the solution of the problem that we have lost tone in our supremacy in this branch of the commercial preparation of synthetic indigo Dr. of manufacture, but the blame is not on the shoulders of Knietsch proved himself to be the right man in the right the dyers, who have always been on the qui vive to utilise place. In company with a number of earnest colleagues new discoveries It was the English and Scotch dyers he worked out and developed the present manufacturing who first took up chemical dyes and encouraged the manuprocesses for the preparation of the materials necessary for facturers to proceed. Mr. F. Robinson proposed “The the synthesis of indigo and other dyes. Always broad-Chairman," and directed attention to the fact that presentminded, he was ready at any time to replace existing plant day results and modern methods could never have been and methods by improvements. In 1904 Knietsch was attained but for the research chemists and their work. placed at the head of the firm. 'The Verein deutscher At one time dyeing was more an art than a science; now Chemiker, at the annual general meeting in Mannheim our chemists have made it practically a science. The old in 1904, awarded the Liebig gold medal to Dr. Knietsch, dyestuffs such as indigo and madder are gradually and and at the opening of the new Technological Mechanical surely disappearing, and are being supplanted by synthetic Institute of the Dresden Technical High School in 1905 products. The English dyeing and colouring industry is the honorary degree of Dr. Ing. was conferred on him. moving with the times, and will eventually hold its own

against all rivals. . The weekly weather report issued by the Meteorological Office for the period ending June 9 shows that the present We have received a copy of No. 12 of the fifteenth volume month has opened with typical summer weather. The of the Zeitschrift für Oologie und Ornithologie, said to be major portion of the United Kingdom was entirely rain- the only serial in the world specially devoted to the interest less, the only ins reported occurring in parts of Scotland of the egg-collector. The present part contains notes on and Ireland, and amounting only to few hundredths of an the eggs of two African birds previously unknown to col. inch. Bright sunshine was for the most part greatly in lectors, general observations and suggestions on subjects excess of the average, 80 per cent. of the possible duration intimately connected with oology, and descriptions of certain occurring in the Channel Islands and 71 per cent. in the eggs from Turkestan. south of England. The temperature averages

In the report for the year 1905, the committee of the generally rather low, and in the south of England the sheltered thermometer at night fell below the freezing general progress of that institution and the present state of

Albany Museum, while referring with satisfaction to the point.

the collections, directs attention to the congested state of We learn from the Journal of the Society of Arts that

the buildings, and the urgent need for more space and for what can be done by sanitation to stamp out malaria is additional funds, if the work is to be carried on in an shown by Mr. Consul Morgan in his reference (No. 3565,

effective manner. The appointments of Profs. Duerden and Annual Series) to the work of the Italian Red Cross Schwarz to the zoological section are stated to have been Society during late years to stamp out malaria in the followed by most satisfactory results. Roman Campagna. The first attempt was made in 1900,

It has been stated by those who have investigated the when the returns showed that not less than 31 per cent.

subject in the selachian group that fishes lack lymphatic of the inhabitants of the " Agro Romano " had been fever

vessels other than those of the visceral system, the super. stricken. In 1901 the figure was returned at 26 per cent.,

ficial and deep-seated vessels of the heart and trunk being 20 per cent. in 1902, ii per cent. in 1903, 10 per cent. in

regarded as veins, and their sinuses as venous sinuses. 1904, and 5.1 per cent. during last year. These results

However this may be in the case of sharks, Mr. W. F. were obtained by strict sanitary measures, use of wire

Allen, in a paper on the lymphatics of the loricate fish nets so as to prevent access of mosquitoes to cottages, and free distribution of quinine among the peasantry.

Scorpænichthys, published in the Proceedings of the

Washington Academy (vol. viii., pp. 41-90), shows that it The annual dinner of the London section of the Society belongs. On the contrary, Scorpænichthys has as fully

is not so in the case of the group to which the latter of Dyers and Colourists was held on May 23, when a representative company was presided over by Sir Thomas

developed a lymphatic system as any vertebrate, so that Wardle, president of the society. In proposing the toast

it may be said that in general wherever connective tissue of the London section of the society, the president expressed

exists there lymphatics will be found. his astonishment at the beautiful work being done in the The February and March issues of the Proceedings of dyeing industry in Italy, and how much pure chemistry the Philadelphia Academy contain a paper by Mr. J. A. G. is being made use of in that work. London, he continued, Rehn on tropical American grasshoppers of the group is taking an interest in chemical development, and he sug- Acridinæ, with descriptions of several new forms, and likegested that the Dyers' Company might associate itself in wise the commencement of one by Dr. R. Smith on the some way with such a body as the Society of Dyers. Sir phylogeny of the races of a species of gastropod of the Thomas Wardle concluded his address by appealing to the Eocene genus Volutilithes. In the case of the genus younger men to take advantage of the splendid scientific Fulgar, it has been supposed that certain Miocene forms training now available, and to induce others to do the represented the ancestral stock of the living American same, for by such methods many of our lost industries species. According to the author this is not so, the fossil would be won back. Responding to the toast of the forms being decadent senile offshoots from the original line, " Allied Industries," Dr. J. C. Cain said no doubt to some which appear, however, to be dominant. A very similar

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state of affairs is shown to exist in the case of Volutilithes, The green colour of plants is such an ever-present reality with the important exception that the main ancestral line that the explanation is apt to be overlooked. The absorpis the one which is dominant.

tion spectra of chlorophyll and the curves of absorption

and assimilation do not directly furnish a solution, and it THE Ostracoda of the San Diego region (No. 1), the is only from the consideration of these, together with the California shore-anemone, Bunodactis xanthogramma, and effects produced by the absorption and dispersion of light sexual dimorphism in the hydroid polyps of the genus rays in the atmosphere, that a satisfactory explanation is Aglaophenia, form the subjects of articles nine, ten, and obtained. The subject is ably discussed by Prof. E. Stahl eleven of Contributions from the San Diego Marine Labor- in Naturwissenschaftliche Wochenschrift for May 6, where atory issued in vol. iii. of the Zoological Publications of he points out that the two pigments contained in chlorothe University of California. In the article on dimorphism phyll are suited to the sun's rays as modified by reflection, (by Mr. H. B. Torrey and Miss Martin) it is shown that the colours being complementary to those of the chloroin the genus mentioned, not only are the gonophores phyll-absorbing rays that predominate in diffused light, dimorphic, but an analogous dissimilarity also obtains in and that certain rays, e.g. the ultra-red, are excluded the jointed plumose structures known as corbulæ, of wholly or in part owing to the danger of too great absorpwhich numerous examples are figured. The plate intended tion in direct sunlight. to illustrate Mr. Torrey's paper on the sea-anemone was Tue fungus Phycomyces nitens is well adapted to physiodestroyed in the San Francisco fire, but a new one will logical investigation owing to the rapidity of its growth be supplied later.

and its sensibility to stimuli. Proceeding out of investi

gations by Elfving wherein curvature of the sporangioTHE April issue of Spolia Zeylanica is of more than usual interest. It opens with a translation of an article by Dr. F. Doflein, of Munich, entitled “ Termite Truffles," being the description of certain remarkably nodular masses of fungus cultivated in their nests by white ants in Ceylon. The hillocks of these termites were found by the author to contain a number of large chambers, each approximately the size of a cocoanut, and each containing one or more large friable masses, looking somewhat like small bathsponges. These cakes were occupied by thousands of termites, ensconced in the cells and connecting passages. The framework of each was beset with numerous white nodules of the size of pins' heads, which proved to be fungus.growths. These nodules are eaten by the larvæ of the workers and soldiers and by the sexual forms at all ages, the adult soldiers and workers having, however, other food. That the funguses are introduced and cultivated by the termites seems undoubted. In the same publication Dr. A. Willey records a singular instance of symbiosis in a crab, originally described from Mauritius under the name of Melia tessellata. When first described its habit of holding sea-anemones in its two front claws was not noticed, but although this was observed later on in Mauritius, it has been generally overlooked. According to Dr. Willey's account and figure, the crab holds in each claw a small white anemone, which it presents, with the tentacles fully expanded, to every intruder, in true boxing attitude.” The ground-colour of the crab is whitish with Fig. 1.-Phycomyces nitens stimulated to grow towards and over the

surface of a porous pot. a rosy flush on the front of the shell, which has also a pattern of black lines. Probably both crab and actinians phores was attributed to physiological action through space, benefit by the association, the actinians enjoying increased Prof. L. Errera was led to experiment on the curvatures mobility, and the crab sheltering and defending itself with caused by the presence of various substances such as rough the living gloves with which it is provided." In the and polished metals, porcelain, glass, deliquescent salts, author's opinion, the stinging threads of the anemone are marble, mica, &c. The results so obtained, and the notes the active ineans of defence and offence.

relative to them, had been sufficiently fully drafted before

Prof. Errera's death to allow of publication, and they A LEAFLET, No. 16, published by the Department of appear in Recueil de l'Institut botanique, Brussels, vol. vi., Agriculture in British East Africa, contains the reports on 1905. It was found that Phycomyces curves towards bodies various samples of cotton grown at Golbanti and Malindi. that absorb moisture and away from those that give off The cotton was produced from Egyptian Afifi seed, except vapour. Thus the sporophores curve towards an unpolished for one sample of Sea Island and one of American upland. rod of iron, but not towards a piece that is perfectly The soils on which the crops were grown were a heavy polished. A number of photographs accompany the paper, alluvium or a lighter red soil, the latter yielding much of which one of the most striking is reproduced. A dry, better results, owing probably to its requiring less cultiva- porous pot is suspended over the Phycomyces growing on tion. The values, except for the Sea Island, ranged between bread in a moist atmosphere. The pot absorbs moisture, fivepence and sixpence per pound. There is a striking and the sporophores have curved right over the surface of difference between the yield from Egyptian seed on the red the pot, some of them ultimately turning upwards owing soil and the other crops obtained.

to the stimulus of gravity.

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