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Title: Appletons' Popular Science Monthly, April 1900 - Vol. 56, Nov. 1899 to April, 1900
Author: Various
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Appletons' Popular Science Monthly, April 1900 - Vol. 56, Nov. 1899 to April, 1900" ***

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Transcriber’s note: Table of Contents added by Transcriber.
Boldface is indicated by =equals signs=; italics by _underscores_.


  Recent Years of Egyptian Exploration        625
  The Gold Sands of Cape Nome                 633
  A State Official on Excessive Taxation      645
  Latest Developments With the X Rays         659
  A Hundred Years of Chemistry                673
  The Science of Art Form                     685
  Steam Turbines and High-speed Vessels       696
  A Survival of Mediæval Credulity            706
  Genuine Starch Factories                    716
  Trade Corporations in China                 722
  Editor’s Table                              728
  Fragments of Science                        731
  Minor Paragraphs                            737
  Publications Received                       639
  Index                                       741

  Established by Edward L. Youmans



  NOVEMBER, 1899, TO APRIL, 1900


  COPYRIGHT, 1900,


APRIL, 1900.




Familiar as we are with the methods of science--exact observation and
record, comparison, and the strict weeding out of hypotheses--yet
such methods have only gradually been applied to various branches of

Geometry became a science long ago, zoölogy much later, medicine
only a generation or two ago, and the history of man is but just
being developed into a science. What was done for other sciences by
the pioneers of the past is now being done in the present day for
archæology. We now have to devise methods, to form a notation for
recording facts, and to begin to lay out our groundwork of knowledge.
With very few exceptions, it may be said of Egypt that there is no
publication of monuments before this century that is of the least use,
no record or dating of objects before 1860, and no comparison or study
of the history of classes of products before 1890. Thus, the work of
recent years in Egyptology is really the history of the formation of a

The great stride that has been made in the last six years is the
opening up of prehistoric Egypt, leading us back some two thousand
years before the time of the pyramid builders. Till recently, nothing
was known before the age of the finest art and the greatest buildings,
and it was a familiar puzzle how such a grand civilization could have
left no traces of its rise. This was only a case of blindness on the
part of explorers. Upper Egypt teems with prehistoric remains, but,
as most of what appears is dug up by plunderers for the market, until
there is a demand for a class of objects, very little is seen of them.
Now that the prehistoric has become fashionable, it is everywhere to
be seen. The earlier diggers were dazzled by the polished colossi, the
massive buildings, the brilliant sculptures of the well-known historic
times, and they had no eyes for small graves, containing only a few
jars or, at best, a flint knife.

The present position of the prehistory of Egypt is that we can now
distinguish two separate cultures before the beginning of the Egyptian
dynasties, and we can clearly trace a sequence of manufactures and art
throughout long ages before the pyramid builders, or from say 6000 B.
C., giving a continuous history of eight thousand years for man in
Egypt. Continuous I say advisedly, for some of the prehistoric ways are
those kept up to the present time.

In the earliest stage of this prehistoric culture metal was already
used and pottery made. Why no ruder stages are found is perhaps
explained by the fact that the alluvial deposits of the Nile do not
seem to be much older than eight thousand years. The rate of deposit
is well known--very closely one metre in a thousand years--and borings
show only eight metres thick of Nile mud in the valley. Before that
the country had enough rain to keep up the volume of the river, and
it did not drop its mud. It must have run as a rapid stream through a
barren land of sand and stones, which could not support any population
except paleolithic hunters. With the further drying of the climate, the
river lost so much velocity that its mud was deposited, and the fertile
mud flats made cultivation and a higher civilization possible. At
this point a people already using copper came into the country. Their
bodies were buried in shallow, circular pit-graves, covered with goat
skins, which were fastened rarely by a copper pin; before the face was
placed a simple bowl of red and black pottery, and some of the valued
malachite was placed in the hands. The body was sharply contracted,
often with the knees almost touching the face, and the hands were
usually in front of the face.

Very soon they developed their pottery into varied and graceful forms,
and decorated it with patterns in white clay applied to the dark-red
surface, but it continued to be entirely hand-made, without the use of
the potter’s wheel. The patterns, usually copied from basketwork, show
the source of the forms of the cups and vases. The modern Kabyle, in
the highlands of Algeria, has kept up the same patterns on hand-made
pottery, and the same use of white clay on a red base. It is probably
to a Libyan people that this civilization is first due, and the
skulls of these prehistoric Egyptians are identical with those of the
prehistoric Algerians from the dolmens and the modern Algerians. This
first growth of the civilization not only developed pottery, but also
the carving of stone vases entirely by hand. The principal type of
these is the cylinder, with many small variations. Figures were carved
in alabaster and bone, and modeled in clay and paste; these are rude,
but show that the type of the race was fine, with a high forehead and
pointed beard. The use of marks denoting property was common, and such
marks seem to be the earliest stages of the system of signs which
developed later into the alphabet. This civilization had apparently
passed its best time, decoration had ceased on the pottery, when a
change came over all classes of work.

The second prehistoric civilization seems to have belonged to a people
kindred to that of the first age, as much of the pottery continued
unchanged, and only gradually faded away. But a new style arose of a
hard, buff pottery, painted with patterns and subjects in red outline.
Ships are represented with cabins on them, and rowed by a long bank
of oars. The use of copper became more general, and gold and silver
appear also. Spoons of ivory, and rarely of precious metals, were
made, but hair combs, which were common before, ceased to be worn.
Stone vases were commonly carved in a variety of hard and ornamental
stones, but always of the barrel outline and not the early cylinder
shapes. Flint-working reached the highest stage ever known in any
country, the most perfect mastery of the material having been acquired.
Though this civilization was in many respects higher than that which
preceded it, yet it was lower artistically, the figures being ruder
and always flat, instead of in the round. Also the use of signs was
driven out, and disappeared in the later stage of this second period.
The separation of these two different ages has been entirely reached
by the classification of many hundreds of tombs, the original order of
which could be traced by the relation of their contents. In this way
a scale of sequence has been formed, which enables the range of any
form of pottery or other object to be exactly stated, and every fact of
connection discovered can be at once reduced to a numerical scale as
definite as a scale of years. For the first time a regular system of
notation has been devised for prehistoric remains, and future research
in each country will be able to deal with such ages in as definite a
manner as with historic times. The material for this study has come
entirely from excavations of my own party at Nagada (1895), Abadiyeh,
and Hu (1899); but great numbers of tombs of these same ages have been
opened without record by M. de Morgan (1896-’97), and by French and
Arab speculators in antiquities.

The connection between these prehistoric ages and the early historic
times of the dynastic kings of Egypt is yet obscure. The cemeteries
which would have cleared this have unhappily been looted in the last
few years without any record, and it is only the chance of some new
discoveries that can be looked to for filling up the history. We can at
least say that the pottery of the early kings is clearly derived from
the later prehistoric types, and that much of the civilization was in
common. But it is clear that the second prehistoric civilization was
degrading and losing its artistic taste for fine work before the new
wave of the dynastic or historic Egyptians came in upon it.

These early historic people are mainly known by the remains of the
tombs of the early kings, found by M. Amelineau at Abydos (1896-’99),
and probably the first stage of the same race is seen in the rude
colossi of the god Min, which I found at Koptos (1894). Unhappily,
the work at Abydos was not recorded, and it is not known now out of
which of many kings’ tombs, nor even out of which cemeteries, the
objects have come. Hence scientific results are impossible, unless
enough material has escaped the careless and ignorant workmen to
reward more accurate reworking of the same ground. We can at present
only glean a general picture of the early royal civilization from
Abydos, supplemented by some splendid carvings of two reigns found at
Hierakonpolis (1897-’98) by Mr. Quibell.

The burials continued to be in tombs of the same form--rectangular pits
lined with brickwork and roofed over with beams and brushwood. But they
were made larger, and, in the case of the royal tombs, great halls were
formed about fifty by thirty-five feet, roofed with beams eighteen
or twenty feet long. In these royal tombs were placed a profusion of
vases of hard and beautiful stones, bowls of slate, and immense jars
of alabaster; these contained the more valuable offerings of precious
ointments and other funereal treasures. Besides these, there were
hundreds of great jars of pottery, containing provision of bread,
meats, dried fruits, water, beer, and wine. Doubtless there were many
vases of metals, but these have been almost always robbed from the tomb
anciently. Around the tomb were the small graves of the retainers of
the king, each with a lesser store like that of their master. The royal
tomb was denoted by a great tablet bearing the king’s spiritual name
by which he would be known in the future world. The private tombs had
small tablets, about a foot and a half high, with the names of their
occupants. As all these tablets show considerable weathering, it seems
that they were placed visible above the tomb. Tombs of the subsequent
kings were elaborated with small chambers around the great one, to
contain the offerings, and even a long passage was formed with dozens
of chambers along each side of it, each chamber containing a separate
kind of offering.

Turning now to some of the remains of these kings during their life,
we learn that they were occupied with frequent wars--the gradual
consolidation of the kingdom of Egypt. One king will record the myriads
of slain enemies, another gives a picture of a captive king brought
before him with over a million living captives, the regular Egyptian
notation for such large numbers being already complete. Another king
shows his triumphal entry to the temple, with the slain enemies laid
out before him. On other sculptures are shown the peaceful triumphs
of canalization and reclamation of land, which are alluded to in the
traditions of the early dynasties preserved by Greek historians. All
these scenes are given us on the slate carvings and great mace heads
covered with sculpture from Hierakonpolis.

Thus in these great discoveries of the last few years we can trace at
least three successive peoples, and see the gradual rise of the arts,
from the man who was buried in his goat skins, with one plain cup by
him, up to the king who built great monuments and was surrounded by
most sumptuous handiwork. We see the rise of the art of exquisite flint
flaking, and the decline of that as copper came more commonly into use.
We see at first the use of signs, later on disused by a second race,
and then superseded by the elaborate hieroglyph system of the dynastic

The mixture of various races was surmised long ago from the varied
portraiture of the early times. It is now shown more plainly than
ever on these early monuments. We see represented the king of the
dynastic type, a scribe with long, wavy hair, a chief of the dynastic
shaven-headed type, another with long, lank hair, and another with a
beard, while the enemies are shown with curly hair and narrow beards
like Bedouin. Four different peoples are here in union against a
fifth. And this diversity of peoples lasts on long into the historic
times. After several centuries of a united Egypt, under the pyramid
builders, we find that some people buried in the old contracted
position, others cut up the body and wrapped every bone separately in
cloth, while others embalmed the body whole. Thus great diversity of
belief and custom still prevailed for perhaps a thousand years after
the unification of Egypt. So useless is it to think of “the ancient
Egyptians” as an unmixed race gradually rising into “a consciousness of

The excavations at Deshasheh in 1897, which first showed me the
diversity of burials, also showed that the type of the race had already
become unified by intermixture, and that, strange to say, four thousand
years later, after untold crossings with many invaders, the type was
unchanged. Later work at Dendereh and elsewhere has pointed to the
conclusion that a mixture of a new race is subdued to the type of
the country by the effect of climate and surroundings within a few

Turning now to the purely classical Egyptian work, the principal
discoveries of the last few years have given us new leading examples
in every line. The great copper statue of King Pepy, with his son,
dates from before 3000 B. C. It is over life size, and entirely wrought
in hammered copper, showing a complete mastery in metal work of the
highest artistic power. Probably of the same age is a head of a figure
of the sacred hawk, wrought hollow in a single mass of hammered gold,
weighing over a pound; this again shows work of noble dignity and
power. Both of these were found at Hierakonpolis in 1898, and are now
in the Cairo Museum.

Some centuries later was made the exquisite jewelry found at Dahshur in
the graves of three princesses. This is a revelation of the delicacy
possible in goldsmith’s work. The soldering of the minute parts of
the gold is absolutely invisible. The figures of hawks are made up
of dozens of microscopic pieces of colored stone--lazuli, turquoise,
carnelian--every one cut to the forms of the feathers, and every piece
having a tiny cell of soldered gold strip to hold it in place, yet the
whole bird only about half an inch high. The finest colored enameling
ever made would be child’s play compared with a piece of this early
jewelry. The exquisite grace of form, harmony of coloring, and sense of
perfection leave the mind richer by a fresh emotion, after seeing such
a new world of skill. Coming down to about 1500 B. C., a large work
has been done in the last six years in clearing the temple of Queen
Hatshepsut at Deir el Bahri, on the western side of Thebes. That great
ruler had there commemorated the events of her reign, particularly
the expedition to the south of the Red Sea to obtain the plants of
the sacred incense and other valued products. The attention shown to
exact figuring of plants and animals makes this valuable as a record of
natural history. This clearance has been made by Dr. Naville for the
English fund. Meanwhile, Franco-Egyptian officials have been clearing
out the Temple of Karnak, on the opposite bank, but with disastrous
effect. The huge columns, built poorly of small blocks by Rameses II,
stand now below the level of the inundation, and, after removing the
earth accumulated around them, the Nile water has free circulation.
This has dissolved the mortar so much that nine of these Titanic
columns of the Great Hall fell last year, and three more threaten to
follow them.

The Valley of the Tombs of the Kings has been prohibited ground
to foreign explorers for over forty years, although the official
department never did any work there. The native plunderers, however,
turned up many years ago the beautiful chair of Queen Hatshepsut, and
lately they found the entry to still unopened royal tombs. The secret
passed--for a consideration--to the Department of Antiquities, and two
royal tombs were opened. These contained the bodies of several kings of
the eighteenth and nineteenth dynasties--one undisturbed, the others
moved from elsewhere. With these was a crowd of objects of funereal
furniture. Unhappily, nothing is published in detail of any official
discoveries; with the exception of the first find of the Dahshur
jewelry, there has never been any full account issued of the great
discoveries in the most important sites, which are reserved to the
Government. The great group of kings found at Deir el Bahri, the great
necropolis of the priests of Amen, the second find of Dahshur jewelry,
the second group of royal mummies, of all these we know nothing but
what has appeared in newspapers, or some partial account of one branch
of the subject. Hardly any publication has ever appeared, such as
the English societies issue every year about the produce of their

Many of the royal temples of the nineteenth dynasty at Thebes were
explored by the English in 1896. The Ramesseum was completely examined,
through all the maze of stone chambers around it. But the most
important result was the magnificent tablet of black granite, about ten
feet high and five wide, covered on one side with an inscription of
Amen Hotep III, and on the other side with an inscription of Merenptah.
The latter account, of about 1200 B. C., mentions the war with the
“People of Israel”; this is the only naming of Israel on Egyptian
records, and is several centuries earlier than any Assyrian record of
the Hebrews. It has, of course, given rise to much discussion, which is
too lengthy to state here.

One of the most important results of historical Egyptian times is the
light thrown on prehistoric Greek ages. The pottery known as “Mykenæan”
since the discoveries of Schliemann in the Peloponnesus was first dated
in Egypt at Gurob in 1889; next were found hundreds of vase fragments
at Tell el Amarna in 1892; and since then several Egyptian kings’ names
have been found on objects in Greece, along with such pottery. The
whole of this evidence shows that the grand age of prehistoric Greece,
which can well compare with the art of classical Greece, began about
1600 B. C., was at its highest point about 1400 B. C., and became
decadent about 1200 B. C., before its overthrow by the Dorian invasion.

Besides this dating, Greece is indebted to Egypt for the preservation
of the oldest texts of its classics. Fragments of Plato almost
contemporary with his lifetime, pages of Thucydides, whole books of
the Iliad, and the celebrated recent publications of Bacchylides and
Herondas, all are due to Egypt. Moreover, of Christian times we have a
leaf of an early collection of Sayings of Jesus, a leaf of gospel about
two centuries older than any other biblical manuscript, and a host of
documents bearing on early Christianity, such as the Gospel of Peter
and other apocryphal writings which were later banned by the Church.

Now it may be asked how all these discoveries are made--indeed, many
people take for granted that some government kindly pays for it all.
On the contrary, the only official influences are a severe check
on such scientific work. While a native Egyptian can plunder tombs
with but little hindrance, any one desiring to preserve objects and
promote knowledge must (after obtaining the permission of the Egyptian
Government for the exact place he wants to work) be officially
inspected at his own expense (a matter of twenty or thirty pounds a
season), and then, after all, give up to the Government half of all he
finds, without any recompense. The English Government long ago gave up
all claim for British subjects to occupy any post in the Cairo Museum,
thus putting a decisive bar on the hopes of would-be students and
hindering the object very effectually.

In face of all these disadvantages, work has yet been carried on by
the Egypt Exploration Fund and by the Egyptian Research Account; both
rely on English and American support, and the latter body is intended
expressly to help students in training. Besides these, private work has
been carried on during several years by two or three other explorers,
partly at their own cost, partly helped by friends. The two societies
above named have kept to the principles that everything shall be
published as soon as possible, and that all the antiquities removed
from Egypt shall be divided among public museums as gifts in return
for the support from various places, nothing ever being sold publicly
or privately. In this way several centers in America send large annual
contributions, have representatives on the London Committee of the
Exploration Fund, and receive their share for museums every year.

Besides this organizing of ways and means, there is quite as important
organization needed in the excavations. At present most of the
above-named work is done by a corps of men who have been engaged at
it for many years. They leave their homes and assemble as soon as the
winter begins; any dealing in antiquities or misconduct since the last
season excludes them from rejoining. They each know their work, what
to preserve, how to leave everything intact in the ground where found,
and how best to manage different kinds of excavating. With such men it
is always possible to screw more information out of a site, however
much it may have been already wrecked in ancient or modern times. And
it is far safer to leave such men unwatched, with the certainty that
they will receive a fair value for all they find, than it is to drive a
gang under the lash, on bare wages, without rewards to keep them from
pilfering. The English system means mutual confidence and good faith;
the native and French system of force means the destruction of both
information and antiquities.

And yet besides this there is the essential business of observing and
recording. Every hole dug must have a meaning and be understood, as to
the date of the ground at different levels and the nature of the place.
Everything must be spelled out as the work advances; any difficulties
that can not be explained must be tried with all possible hypotheses;
each detail must either fall into place as agreeing with what is known,
or be built in as a new piece of knowledge.

Twenty years ago nothing was known of the date of any Egyptian
manufactures, not even of pottery or beads, which are the commonest.
Now, at present it is seldom that anything is found which can not be
dated tolerably near by, and in some classes of remains the century or
even the reign can be stated at once, without a single word to show it.
The science of Egyptian archæology is now in being.

In this, therefore, as in many other matters, the Anglo-Saxon taste
for private enterprise is the ruling power, and in spite of political
obstacles and of taxation, which are happily unknown in other sciences,
the private work of individuals has quietly traced out the foundations
of one of the earliest civilizations of mankind.




One of the most interesting contributions to the history of gold and
gold mining has undoubtedly been discovered in the region of Cape
Nome, Alaska, during the past summer. Vague reports have from time to
time, for a period of a year or more, been sent out from the bleak
and inhospitable shores of Bering Sea of the discovery there of rich
deposits of placer gold, and of almost fabulous wealth acquired by a
few fortunate prospectors--a new Klondike on American soil--but these
gained little credence beyond the portals of transportation companies
and the organizers of “boom” enterprises. A few of the more credulous
and those unmindful of adventure and hardship took practical action on
the receipt of the reports, and prepared to buffet the still ice-bound
waters of the Pacific to gain early access to the new land of promise.
In a brief period the fame of Golovnin Bay had been spread broadcast,
only to be again dimmed by the later announcements that the earlier
reports of finds were only “fakes.” Making and unmaking are a part of
all new mining centers, and in an incredibly short time all manner of
conclusions are arrived at regarding the possibilities of a location.

[Illustration: AN OFF-SHORE VIEW OF NOME.]

New reports of finds made along the coast of Bering Sea, about fifty
miles west of Golovnin Bay, called renewed attention to the region,
and those who in the early summer of the past year (1899) timidly
ventured their fortunes to share in a possible discovery, found, on
their arrival at the tundra-bound shores about Cape Nome, that miles of
territory had already been located as claim sites, that sluice-boxes
were in full operation, and that sackfuls of gold dust and nuggets had
been carefully laid to one side, representing “outputs” of tens of
thousands of dollars. At this time many of the journals of civilization
in the East, repeating the warnings that they persistently threw out
following the discovery of gold in the Klondike, jealously guarded
the secrets of the earth by doubting, or even denying, the claims
to discovery, but, withal, wisely counseling against that haphazard
and purseless rush which is one of the invariable accompaniments of
gold announcements. A new mining district had suddenly sprung into
existence, and before two months had passed--i. e., by the early days
of September--a full front of tents and frame houses took possession
of what continues to remain a dreary and desolate expanse of ocean
beach--sufficiently pleasant in the quiet, balmy days of summer and
autumn, but wofully exposed to the hurricane blasts of the arctic
winter--and gave shelter to from three to four thousand adventurers,
where formerly a few Indians and Eskimos from the still farther
northwest and King’s Island constituted a straggling and accidental
population. This, in brief, is the initial history of the Nome or Anvil
City mining region, which will almost certainly call to it in the
coming spring fifteen to twenty thousand additional inhabitants.

[Illustration: A STREET IN NOME.]

Far more interesting to the one who has not been properly rewarded
in his search for placer claims than the placer deposits themselves
are the gold-bearing beach sands, whose productivity will mainly be
responsible for the influx of population to the new region. From them,
by crude and simple methods, has been taken, in barely more than two
months, gold to the value of more than a million dollars, and what the
possibilities for the future may be no one is wise enough to tell. So
clearly exaggerated did the accounts of the free-sand rocking appear,
even those coming from reputable miners who were personally known to
me, that I could hardly bring myself to take them at their full value,
but, being accidentally drifted in the course of a summer’s wanderings
to St. Michael, above the mouth of the Yukon River, I had easy
opportunity to verify for myself the accuracy of the statements that
had been sent out, and to cast a geological glance at the situation. My
examination of the region was confined to a few of the later days of
September and to early October.

The geographical position of the Nome region is the southern face of
the peninsular projection of Alaska which separates Kotzebue Sound on
the north from Bering Sea on the south, and terminates westward in
Cape Prince of Wales the extent of the North American continent. In
a direct line of navigation, it lies about twenty-five hundred miles
northwest of Seattle and one hundred and seventy miles southeast of
Siberia. The nearest settlement of consequence to it prior to 1899
was St. Michael, a hundred miles to the southeast, the starting point
of the steamers for the Yukon River; but during the year various
aggregations of mining population had built themselves up in closer
range, and reduced the isolation from the civilized world by some sixty
miles. The Nome district as settled centers about the lower course of
the Snake River, an exceedingly tortuous stream in its tundra course,
which emerges from a badly degraded line of limestone, slaty, and
schistose mountain spurs generally not over seven hundred to twelve
hundred feet elevation, but backed by loftier granitic heights, and
discharges into the sea at a position thirteen miles west of Cape Nome
proper. Three miles east of this mouth is the discharge of Nome River.
Both streams have a tidal course of several miles. Nome, or, as it was
first called, Anvil City--named from a giant anvil-like protrusion of
slate rock near to the summit of the first line of hills--occupies in
greater part the tundra and ocean beach of the eastern or left bank of
Snake River, but many habitations, mainly of a temporary character,
have been placed on the bar beach which has been thrown up by the sea
against the mouth of the stream, and deflected its course for some
distance parallel with the ocean front. A number of river steamers (one
even of considerable size) and dredges have found a suitable anchorage
or “harbor” in the barrier-bound waters, and much driftwood passes into
them at times of storms and higher waters, when the greatly constricted
and shallow mouth is made passable. The entire region is treeless, and
the nearest approach to woodland is in the timber tract of Golovnin
Bay and its tributaries, about forty miles to the northeast. A fairly
dense growth of scrub willow, three to five feet in height, with elms
and alders, forms a fringe or delimiting line to parts of the courses
of the streams in the tundra, which greatly undulates in the direction
of the foothills and incloses tarnlike bodies of fresh and slightly
brackish waters. It is covered merely with a low growth of flowering
herbaceous plants, grass, and moss, with a somewhat scantier admixture
of the dwarf birch, arctic willow, and crowberry. The surface is
pre-eminently swampy during the warmer periods of the year, and walking
over it means either wading through the water or risking continuous
jumps to and from the individual clumps of matted grass and moss--the
so-called “nigger-heads.” The greater part of the tundra seems to rest
on gravel and sand--doubtless of both marine and fluviatile origin--and
ordinarily the frozen stratum is already reached at a depth of two or
three feet, sometimes less. In early October of the past year it was
still too “open” to permit of easy walking over it, but in quite early
hours of the morning the surface afforded fair lodgment to moderate
weights. Fragmentary parts of the skeleton of the mammoth have been
found here and there, even loose on the top grass, but where found
in such situations it is by no means certain that they had not been
redeposited by high tidal wash. A large fragment of thigh bone, with
shoulder blade, which I found about an eighth of a mile inland and
perhaps fifteen feet above the water, was associated with one of
the mandibular bones of the whale. I could obtain no information as
to their having been possibly carried to their present position by
man, but it may have been the case. A large skull, which I owe to the
kindness of Mr. Inglestadt and to Mr. Louis Sloss, Jr., manager of the
Alaska Commercial Company, was obtained, as nearly as I could determine
through inquiry on the spot, from about the same locality. Where it
abuts upon the sea the tundra stands from eight to twenty feet above
it, at places descending to even lower levels. The sea face is almost
everywhere an abrupt one, showing undercutting by high water, and it
is continued by a broad, rapidly sloping sand and shingle beach, which
packs firmly, and almost immediately beneath the surface exhibits a
distinctly stratified construction--the alternate layers of fine, flat
gravel, coarse, clayey sand, and finer “ruby” (fragmented garnet) sand
sloping like the surface, although generally with a milder pitch, to
the sea.


The open sea front, with inland tundra, is continued for a distance
of about fourteen miles westward of Nome, where it is interrupted
by the mountains, in a west-southwest course, reaching the sea;
flat-topped Sledge Island, so much recalling in aspect some of the
islands lying off Whale Sound, in the northwest of Greenland, is their
oceanic continuation for some distance, with sharp breaks on both the
oceanic and inner sides. It is probable that much of the _débris_
that has resulted from the disruption of the mountain masses has been
distributed littorally by the sea, with an eastward wash, to form the
bars and shallows which for some distance stretch along the coast;
nor is it impossible that some of the giant bowlders of limestone,
marble, granite, and syenite which are found on the margin of the
beach about four or five miles west of Nome, some of them measuring
eight and twelve feet or more in diameter, and all of them smoothly
rounded and evenly polished, represent a part of this destruction.
At the same time, there is good reason to suspect that they may have
been deposited by ice action, either as erratics of floe ice coming
from the northwest, or of glacial distribution from the region of the
mountains. Whatever may have been the final stage in the history of the
amphitheater of Nome (the region included between Cape Nome and Sledge
Island), which my limited observation did not permit me to determine
to full satisfaction, it is almost certain, even in the absence
of the ordinary glacial testimony, that the region is one of past
glaciation, and that much of the gravel and bowlder material of the
ocean front is of morainic origin, so modified and altered in position
by readjustments of the land and water as to have lost its proper
physiographic contours. The aspect of the hills and valleys is almost
precisely that of some of the regions of Greenland which have only
quite recently been vacated by the glaciers, while the composition of
the shingle--the inclusion over so long a front of bowlders from beyond
the first line of mountain heights, many of them most markedly grooved
and polished--is also highly suggestive of glacial deposition.


The gold sands, or sands that are worked for gold, are merely the
ordinary materials of the beach, loose and incoherent like most
seashore sands, and particularly defining horizons three to six
feet below the surface. In regular stratified layers, with fine and
moderately coarse gravel, they embrace four or five distinct layers of
fragmented garnets (the components of the so-called “ruby sand”), and
it is from these, and at this time almost exclusively from the bottom
layer of three to five inches thickness, which is popularly described
as lying on “bed rock”--in most places merely a hard-pan of arenaceous
clay or argillaceous sand, with no true rock to define it--that most of
the gold is obtained. Each ruby band nearer to the top seems to contain
less and less gold, and there is no question that the different layers
are merely reformations by the sea from those of earlier deposition,
just as surface shingle deposits generally are in part reconstructions
of underlying beds. That the ocean is to-day depositing the ruby sand
is unmistakably shown by the great patches of this sand lying on the
surface and its incoming in the path of nearly every storm. Even these
surface sands are mildly gold-bearing, showing that the gold, despite
its high specific gravity, may be buoyed up and wafted in by such a
light medium as water when it has been reduced to sufficiently minute
particles or scalelike forms. It is little wonder that a general belief
has gained currency with the more enthusiastic locators that the sand
gold is a deposition or precipitate from the sea.

The gold itself occurs in an exceedingly fine state of subdivision, too
fine in most cases to be caught without mercury or the best arrangement
of “blanketings.” Much of it is really in the condition of colors
dissected nearly to their finest particles, and it is hardly surprising
that it should have so long escaped detection. Occasionally pieces to
the value of three to six cents are obtained in the pans, and I was
witness to the finding of a scale with the value of perhaps nearly
twenty cents. The usual magnetitic particles are associated with the
gold, and their origin can clearly be traced to the magnetite which
is so abundantly found in some of the schists (micaceous, chloritic,
and talcose schists), which, judged by the fragments and bowlders
that everywhere lie in the path of the streams of the tundra, must be
closely similar to the series of schists of the Klondike region. The
particles of fragmented garnet, which by their astonishing abundance
give so distinctive a coloring to the layers which they compose or
constitute, are of about the ordinary fineness of seashore sand,
perhaps a trifle coarser, but occasionally much coarser particles or
masses of particles are found; and in the placer deposits of Anvil
Creek, as in the bunch of claims around “Discovery”--about five miles
due north of Nome--fragments of the size of lentils are not uncommon.
I have seen full garnets obtained from the wash here which were of the
size of small peas. Nodules of manganese (manganite, pyrolusite) are at
intervals found with them, and some stream-tin (cassiterite), as in the
Klondike region, also appears to be present. Apart from the evidence
that is brought down by the magnetite and garnet, it would naturally be
assumed that the gold had its primal source in the mountains back of
the coast. These, as has already been stated, have undergone exhaustive
degradation, and the materials resulting from their destruction,
in whatever way brought about, have been thrown into the sea, and
there adjusted and readjusted--or, so far as the gold particles are
concerned, one might say “concentrated.” Latterly, and perhaps this is
also true to-day, the land has undergone elevation, and exposed much
that until recently properly belonged to the sea. The tundra is a part
of this ocean floor, and it too doubtless contains much gold, perhaps
even very much.

The length of the sea strip that was worked during the past summer,
and so far in autumn as the clemency of the weather permitted, covered
a nearly continuous thirty or thirty-five miles, extending beyond
Synrock on the west and, with interruptions, to Nome River on the east.
The full extent of the auriferous sands remains unknown, however, and
report claims for them reappearances throughout the entire coast as
far as Cape Prince of Wales. The season’s work gave easy and lucrative
employment to perhaps fifteen hundred, mostly needy, prospectors, who
realized on an average certainly not less than fifteen dollars per day,
and many as much as sixty, seventy, and eighty dollars. It is claimed,
and I have little reason to doubt the truthfulness of the statement,
that from a single rocker, although operated by two men, one hundred
and fifty dollars had been taken out in the course of nine hours’
work. It is also asserted that two men realized a fortune of thirteen
thousand dollars as the result of their combined season’s work, and
two others are said to have rocked out forty-five hundred dollars in
the period of a month. Women have, to an extent, shared with men the
pleasures of “rocking gold from the sea,” and their application in
the toils of the sea plow, with booted forms, rolled-up sleeves, and
sunbonnets, was certainly an interesting variation on the borders
of the Arctic Circle from the scenes one has grown accustomed to at
Atlantic City or Newport.


The placer deposits of the Nome district are in the form of shallow,
largely or mostly unfrozen gravels, which occupy varying heights,
partly in disrupted or overhanging benches, of the valleys and gulches
which trench the slate and limestone mountains. Perhaps the most
favored ones are those of Anvil and Glacier Creeks (with Snow Gulch
as an affluent of the latter), tributaries of Snake River, and Dexter
Creek, a tributary of Nome River. My time and the conditions of weather
permitted only of a visit to Anvil Creek, and an examination mainly of
the properties about “Discovery.” The diggings here are all shallow,
from four to seven feet, when bed-rock, a steeply pitching and highly
fissile slate, is reached. As before remarked, the gravels are not
frozen, and thereby present a marked contrast to the condition that
prevails in the Klondike region, and one, it is hardly necessary to
state, which is eminently to the favor of economy in mining. A layer
of ice, about eight inches in thickness, covers one side of the layers
in claim “No. 1 below,” but beneath this the matrix is again open. In
all these claims the pay-streak was at first reported to be very broad,
but it seems that the later work has narrowed down the probabilities
of extension very measurably--at any rate, in the condition of a rich
producer. Of the wealth contained in these claims there is no question,
but it would probably be straining the truth to say that it is the
equal of that of the best or even the better claims of the Klondike
region. A two days’ clean-up from “No. 1 below” is reported to have
yielded thirteen thousand dollars, while the entire product of that
claim from July 26th, when the first wash was made, to September 21st,
was placed at one hundred and twenty-five thousand dollars. Claim “No.
1 above” appears to be equally good, and “Discovery” falls perhaps
not very far below either. A nugget of the value of three hundred
and twelve dollars--a magnificent specimen, measuring upward of four
inches in length--was obtained from the tailings of “No. 1 below”; a
larger one, of the value of four hundred and thirty-four dollars, is
to the credit of “No. 1 above.” It is interesting to note that these
rich claims are located at the very issuance of Anvil Creek from the
mountains--i. e., at the contact with the upper rise of the tundra--and
other good properties are found still lower down, a condition which
makes it certain that the inner reaches of the tundra, whatever the
whole tundra may be, must yield largely in gold.


The city of Nome itself might properly be termed a model of production.
Before the end of June, 1899, there was practically nothing on its
present site; in early July it was still a place of tents, but by
the middle of September it had blossomed out into a constructed town
of three to four thousand inhabitants, more than one half of whom
were properly housed in well-built cabins, the lumber for which was
in part brought from a distance of two thousand miles, and none of
it from less than one hundred miles. Numerous stores and saloons had
arranged themselves on both sides of a well-defined street (which was
here and there centrally interrupted by building transgressions), the
familiar signs of dancing and boxing bouts were displayed in front of
more than comfortably filled faro and roulette establishments, and
in a general way the site wore the aspect of riding a boom swell.
And indeed there was plenty of activity, for the final weeks of fine
weather warned of the impending wintry snows and blasts, and much had
to be done individually to shield one from these and other discomforts.
There was at that time a threatening shortage in building material,
and fears were expressed for those who seemingly would be obliged
to spend the winter months--a dreary expanse of nearly one half the
year, with hurricane blasts of icy wind blowing with a velocity of
fifty to eighty miles an hour, and under the not very comfortable
temperature of -40° to -60° F.--in the frail shelter of tents. How
many, if any, remained in this condition can not now be known. Much
driftwood and some coal had been secured by many of the more fortunate
inhabitants, and it is possible that some provision has been made by
which everybody of the two or three thousand wintering inhabitants
will receive a proper measure of heating substance, without which the
utmost discomfort must prevail. The last coal before my departure sold
for seventy-five dollars per ton, but I suspect that later importations
must have realized the better part of double this amount. In early
October flour could still be purchased for seven to eight dollars per
sack, and meat for a dollar a pound, but these prices were run up
very materially in the period of the next two weeks. Good meals were
only a dollar, and fractions of meals could be had for twenty-five
and fifty cents. Magnificent oranges were only a quarter apiece, and
watermelons four and five dollars. All these prices were, at the
least, doubled before the first week in November, when the locality
was finally cut off from contact with the rest of the civilized world.
The principal commercial houses doing trade in Alaska--as the Alaska
Commercial Company, the North American Trading and Transportation
Company, the Alaska Exploration Company, all of which, besides others,
have their agencies in Dawson and at various stations on the Yukon
River--have well-constructed, iron-sheathed warehouses, and carry large
lines of goods. The energy which in so short a period has planted
these interests here, and in so substantial a manner, is certainly
astonishing. Who a year ago could have expected that the needs of a
resident population situated close under the Arctic Circle, and along
the inhospitable shores of Bering Sea, would have demanded depots of
sale of the size of those that one finds in cities of importance in the
civilized South?

Nome prints to-day three newspapers, the first issue of the first
journal, the Nome News, appearing about the 10th of October. Its
selling price was twenty-five cents. Up to the time of my leaving,
there were no serious disturbances of any kind, but indications of
trouble, resulting from the disputed rights of possession, whether in
the form of squatter sovereignty or of purchase, were ominously in the
air, and it was feared that should serious trouble of any kind arise,
neither the military nor civil authorities would be in a position
to properly cope with it. It was freely admitted that the community
was not under the law that so strongly forces order in Dawson and
the Klondike region. Much more to be feared than disturbance, for at
least the first season, is the possibility of conflagration; closely
packed as are the tents and shacks, with no available water supply for
combating flames, a headway of fire can not but be a serious menace
to the entire location, and one which is in no way lessened through
the general indraught of hurricane winds. The experiences of Dawson
should have furnished a lesson, but they have seemingly not done so,
nor has apparently the average inhabitant profited in any effort to
ward off the malignant influences arising from hard living, unnecessary
exposure to the inclemencies of the weather, and a non-hygienic diet.
Hence, typhoid or typho-malarial disease, even if not in a very
pronounced form, has already sown its seeds of destruction, and warns
of the dangers which here, as in Dawson, man brings to himself in his
customary contempt for the working of Nature’s laws.



It is not to government reports that a student of social science looks
for warnings against the perils lurking in the enormous expenditures
and the extraordinary enlargement of the duties of the state. Officials
are usually so deeply impressed with the importance of their positions
and so anxious to magnify the worth of their labors that they are prone
to take the rosiest view of any part of the great clanking machine
intrusted to their care. With the keenest pride they point to their
achievements in furthering the work of human welfare. If modesty does
not restrain them, they are certain to paint, with an artless faith
in their own abilities, the still greater work that could be done
with a slight increase of funds and a little more assistance. Not all
officials, however, permit themselves to indulge in the natural vanity
of bureaucrats. They refuse either to be blinded to the perpetual
failure of state-made civilization, or to deceive the impoverished
victims of the same costly system of modern magic. Of the very few of
this class Mr. James H. Roberts, for five years Comptroller of the
State of New York,[A] is perhaps the most conspicuous. Astray as he is
on the question of a graded inheritance tax, and trustful as he is in
the virtue of State supervision, he puts himself beyond criticism in
his opposition to the policy of State socialism, now the rage at home
and abroad. Indeed, no one could hold it up to graver reproach.

    [A] He was in office from January 1, 1894, to January 1, 1899.

Whenever an observer of the signs of the times in the United States
ventures to say that they offer little food for hope, he is branded as
pessimistic or unpatriotic. He is told that if he had the confidence
in democratic institutions of a man with a good digestion and a fair
intelligence, he would know that they possess a vitality, a power of
rejuvenation, that does not belong to an autocracy nor an aristocracy.
If he is particularly despondent, and seeks to justify himself with
fact and argument, he is denounced as a dangerous agitator, or, what
is a shade more odious, as an absurd _doctrinaire_. But Mr. Roberts
has not been consigned to any such depths of contempt. He is known
as a “hard-headed business man,” a title of honor that always frees
the most ridiculous optimist from any suspicion of the theorist or
sentimentalist. Yet, as the supervisor of the finances of a great
State, he was brought in contact with a mass of phenomena that forced
upon him the conviction that something is wrong, and that if it is not
righted it will bring disaster. Indeed, I do not recall a pessimist,
however dyspeptic, nor a _doctrinaire_, however visionary, that has
struck a more melancholy note than he. In all his reports much will
be found that indicates anything but a belief that a democracy that
plunders and enslaves a people is any better than any other despotism
guilty of the same offense, or that the practice in the one case will
be productive of greater prosperity and happiness than in the other.

It is, however, in the report for 1897 that Mr. Roberts gives the
fullest expression to his apprehensions. “This country,” he says
in an elaborate argument for a graded inheritance tax, which he
believed would bring some relief to the poor and discontented, “has
just passed through the most threatening political campaign in its
history. The portents in 1896 were vastly more dangerous than those of
1860, when peace and internecine war hung in the balance. Issues were
advanced last year, and vigorously supported by a large element of the
American electorate, which, if adopted, would have undermined the very
foundations of American institutions. These issues were largely the
outgrowth of discontent among the people. The farmer, as a class, the
work people, and the small trade folk were in distress.... Hundreds
of thousands of industrious people were out of employment, the best
efforts of the farmer had been attended with poor results, and the
small tradesman and business man were worse off than if they had been
doing nothing.” In the report for the following year he spoke again of
the “public discontent and dissatisfaction with existing conditions
in this State.” Instead of joining the comfortable and contented in a
denunciation of them as a delusion, born of envy or criminal instincts,
he expressed the opinion that they had a very substantial basis. “My
four years of close official study of the State finances,” he says,
“compels me to say there is serious ground for complaint.” After giving
an impressive summary in another place of the enormous increase of
public expenditures within recent years he is moved to ask, “Whither
are we drifting?”

The answer commonly given to this question is one quite flattering
to American vanity. It is that we are drifting away from “parochial”
things and taking our proper place as a great “world power.” Having
solved all the petty problems that have absorbed our thoughts and
energies for a hundred years, we have gone forth to “take up the white
man’s burden,” and to solve the greater problems that a discriminating
Providence has so wisely confided to our ability and philanthropy. At
the same time we are going to have our say as to how the affairs of
the world outside of our narrow and cramping borders shall be managed.
Mr. Roberts, however, does not appear to take any such pleasant view
of the future. He has none of the blood of Don Quixote flowing in his
veins. The bestowal of the blessings of a Christian civilization with
machine guns upon breech-clouted savages has no attractions for him. He
sees that we have made such a disgraceful failure of the management of
the contemptible things in which we have been so ignobly absorbed that
we are threatened with national decadence! “While the contests against
unjust and oppressive taxation,” he says in his report for 1899, “have
been the contests of freedom and civil and religious liberty in the
world, it must not be forgotten that unjust and burdensome taxation
has been in all ages the most prolific cause of national decadence
as well. There are nations in Europe, once great and prosperous,” he
adds, thus recalling the warnings of Lord Salisbury’s famous speech
on the same subject, “which to-day seem dying of dry rot because, to
meet their immense expenses and to pay interest on their great bonded
debts, taxation has been increased beyond the safe limit, and the very
sources of national prosperity have been taxed so that they run dry,
or send down a rill where it should be a river. Few national diseases
are more dangerous or harder to cure than burdensome taxation. Can
any one charged with the responsibility of making tax laws,” he asks,
profoundly stirred by the startling facts that have come under his
observation, “afford to ignore the undoubted lessons of history or the
manifest tendency of the times in the matter of revenue raising and

Obvious as is the fitting answer to this question, it is one that few
people stop to give. Both the lessons of history and the tendency
of the times are willfully and incessantly ignored. Not only are
they ignored by demagogues, who thrive most when public distress is
greatest, and by misguided philanthropists, who seek to relieve it in
ways that only intensify it. Even publicists, whose studies in history
ought to make them more familiar with the signs of social decadence
than a man of affairs with vision less extended, ignore them also. They
seem to be as insensible to the real significance of what is going
on before their eyes as the wooden totems of a burning tepee. But to
minds more alert and penetrating, even if less congested with musty
lore and fine intentions, the flight of the farming population to the
cities is something besides “a great natural movement toward urban life
that accompanies an advance in civilization”--it is a desperate but
futile attempt to escape conditions that have become too hard to be
borne. The swarms of impoverished and degraded humanity that crowd the
slums to suffocation are not altogether the product of willful sloth
and incapacity; they are due, in a measure, to the growing taxation
that has wiped out the narrow margin that separates independence
from dependence--self-support and self-respect from destitution and
pauperism. The hatred of the rich, the denunciation of capital, the
contempt for the Church, the bloody insurrections of labor, the
general feeling of rancor, accompanied by an increase of the tyranny
of trades unions and government regulations, are not the inevitable
manifestations of envy, ignorance, and criminal instincts; they are
the inevitable fruits of the perpetual aggressions in a thousand forms
that spring from politics and war. But instead of acting upon this
natural interpretation of the signs of the times and seeking to solve
the social problem in the only way that it can be solved, the “new”
reformers tormenting the world are engaged in the invention of schemes
that add to the public burdens and hasten the nation’s decay.

The reckless expenditure of public money in the United States has
not been confined to any particular political division nor to any
particular geographical section. The national, State, and municipal
governments have seemed to vie with one another in the plunder of the
taxpayer. From the North, the South, the East, and the West have come
the same complaints of excessive burdens.[B] But figures are needed to
give these statements the vividness of reality. Beginning with national
expenditures, Mr. Roberts says that during the decade from 1820 to 1830
they were $1.07 per capita; from 1851 to 1861, they were $2.06; and for
the year 1894, $6.08. “In a word,” he adds, “the per capita expense of
the national Government in 1894 was nearly six times as great as it
was in 1820, and nearly three times as great as it was in the decade
before our great civil war.” The per capita expenditures of the State
of New York in 1830 were $1.30, thirty years later they were $1.89, in
1890 they were $2.15, and “in 1897 the estimated per capita expenditure
reached the alarming amount of $4.95.” That is to say, the combined
expenditures of the State and national governments gave a rate as high
as that prevailing in France before the outbreak of the Revolution.
“The tendency to increase,” says Mr. Roberts, commenting on these
figures, “is a persistent one. In 1881 the amount expended by the State
was $9,878,214.59; in 1884, $10,479,517.31; in 1887, $14,301,102.48;
in 1890, $13,076,881.86; in 1893, $17,367,335.98; and in 1896,
$20,020,022.47.” Coming to municipal expenditures, where the hand of
the prodigal has been most lavish, Mr. Roberts says that “between 1860
and 1880 the municipal debts of our Union increased from $100,000,000
to $682,000,000, and in fifteen cities, believed to represent the
average, the increase in taxation was 362.2 per cent, while the
increase in taxable valuation was but 156.9 per cent, and of population
but 70 per cent. In the year 1860 the direct taxes for State, county,
town, and city purposes in New York were $4.90 per capita, in 1880 it
was $8.20, and in 1896 it had reached $10.43, an increase in thirty-six
years of 213 per cent.” It should be added that the bonded debt--State,
county, city, town, village, and school district--in the State is
estimated by Mr. Roberts to be $450,000,000. Is it any wonder that
people so mercilessly plundered feel that the times are out of joint?
Is it any wonder, either, that in 1896 Mr. Roberts was moved to say
that, without the discovery of new sources of revenue, “a low tax rate
would never again be enjoyed in this State”? Is it any wonder, finally,
that he declared again that if “we have not yet passed the danger limit
of taxation,” we have reached “a point where there is a deep feeling of
unrest and dissatisfaction, and where a halt should be called or there
will be danger”?

    [B] From the mass of proofs of this statement in my possession
        I will select only one. In a call for a convention at
        Portland, Me., on the 10th of June last, of all persons
        “interested in the revision of the present system of State
        taxation and a more economical management of the State
        affairs,” it is stated that “the expenses of the State
        have increased fifty per cent in ten years, while the
        wealth and population of the State have steadily declined.”
        The object of the convention was “to protest against the
        course of extravagance that is rapidly bringing reproach
        upon the government of the State and reducing the farmers
        and taxpayers to automatons to grind out revenue to be
        absorbed by a rapacious and ever-multiplying horde of
        office-holders, who devour the people’s substance as fast
        as they produce it.” After showing how “once prosperous
        farming towns and townships have been reduced to but
        little better than a howling wilderness,” the call says
        in conclusion: “These once prosperous farming communities
        were redeemed from the native wilderness by men who were
        no more temperate, industrious, or economical than the
        farmers of to-day, and the prices they received for their
        products were as low as, and in some instances lower than,
        to-day, but the fruits of their honest toil were not drawn
        from them as fast as acquired by national, State, county,
        and, in many instances, by municipal extravagance, as it
        is to-day.” The plundered peasantry of Spain, Italy, or
        Russia, army ridden as they are, could not have made a more
        just complaint.

The stock explanation of this growth of expenditure is that with
the advance of civilization the cost of government must increase in
like degree; there must be more regulation and supervision of the
activities becoming more numerous and complex. But this means, if it
means anything, that the more enlightened and humane people are, the
more difficult it is to maintain order and enforce justice, the more
inclined are they to attack and plunder one another--in a word, the
more barbarous they are. Preposterous as this theory of civilization
is, it is precisely the one upon which the American people are acting
with unparalleled energy. While we should naturally think them moving
toward a point where they could get along without government, they are
moving toward a point where they will have nothing but government.
Referring to the increase of expenditures already mentioned, Mr.
Roberts says it “corresponds almost exactly with the increase of
the number of commissions and departments.... These departments and
commissions,” he continues, “are largely for the purpose of extending
social supervision and regulation over many things which, in the
earlier days of our Commonwealth, were left to the localities or to
self-regulation.” Again he says: “The amount of State inspection
has become very great, reaching out constantly over new fields, and
employing in the aggregate an army of inspectors.... The system of
_laissez faire_, which was the rallying cry of democracy and free
government at the beginning of the century, has yielded gradually to a
system of supervision and control which monarchies never attempted....
What our State has done in this line can not probably be undone,” he
says in a repetition of his warning, “but this tendency to expand
and multiply and differentiate and segregate State supervision and
regulation must cease, or the burden will soon become too grievous to
be borne.”

But there is no warrant for the assumption that the more civilized we
are--that is, the greater our self-control--the more are we in need
of inspection and regulation. Such an explanation of the enormous
increase in public expenditure is worthless. The true explanation lies
in the greed of politicians and the delusion of social reformers. To
both of these causes must be attributed the evils that Mr. Roberts
deplores. “The truth of history,” he says, referring to the thirty-six
new offices and commissions created since 1880, “compels the statement
that it looks as if many of these creations were made not so much to
satisfy a public want as to relieve a political situation.” That is
to say, they were designed to provide spoils for the insatiable maw
of politicians. One of the most flagrant examples of this popular
method of forwarding the beneficent work of civilization and hastening
the dawn of the millennium is the State Board of Mediation and
Arbitration, created in 1886. Up to the present year it has cost the
taxpayers $195,828.57. For this expenditure little can be shown but a
shelf full of reports seldom read, and a pigeon hole of vouchers for
salaries never earned. With one of the former members of this board,
who served thirteen years and received $39,000 for his able services,
I am personally acquainted. Of my own knowledge, I can say that for
nearly three years at least his duties as commissioner never interfered
perceptibly with his duties as editor. That most of the other offices
and commissions are equally worthless there can be no doubt. Altogether
they have cost the State the startling sum of $31,768,899.85, and are
increasing the public burdens at the rate of more than $1,000,000 a
year. But their true character as asylums for decayed politicians,
or as stepping stones for ambitious young ones, and at all times
as centers of political intrigue and personal profit, is gradually
dawning upon the public. Already several Governors have demanded, in
their annual messages to the Legislature, that they be consolidated
or abolished. As yet, however, it has been impossible to relax their
grip on the taxpayer. Obedient to the instincts of their kind, they are
inventing new arguments to establish their claims to the confidence and
gratitude of the victims of their greed and incompetency.

But the creation of new and needless offices is not the only
manifestation of what Mr. Roberts fitly calls “the vicious tendencies
of legislation.” More demoralizing are the laws that actually encourage
the robbery of one class of people for the benefit of another. A
familiar example is the bounty law for the destruction of fishing
nets. Almost as soon as passed it produced a new industry--namely, the
manufacture of cheap nets, which were deposited in fishing waters,
subsequently discovered and seized by a pre-arrangement, and made the
basis of demands upon the public treasury out of proportion to their
value. So great have been the frauds perpetrated under it that the
cry for its repeal comes from every quarter. Another law even worse
morally was passed to meet the clamor of the bicyclists and bicycle
manufacturers. It provides that twenty-five per cent of the cost of
so-called good roads to be built under it shall be paid by the State.
As cities and villages are exempt from its provisions, this sum, which
comes out of the pockets of all taxpayers, urban as well as rural, is,
as Mr. Roberts says, simply “a gratuity to the towns for the benefit
of country roads.” As a sign of the moral decadence of the times, I
ought to add that one of the most powerful and effective arguments in
favor of the law was this very discrimination. Still more shameless
was one of the chief arguments in favor of the Raines liquor law. With
a moral callousness truly astounding, its advocates framed tables of
figures to show how great a percentage of taxation it would shift from
the country to the city districts. In the heated political campaign
that followed, these tables were made to do service again to save from
defeat the party responsible for the enactment. To indicate, finally,
how legislation may encourage vice, I must not omit to mention the
provision that created the Raines hotel. Under it assignation houses
have multiplied to a degree that Satan himself could not have foreseen
nor have been more enchanted with.

But the greatest inroads on the pockets of the taxpayer have been
made under the pretense of charity. I say “pretense” because it is a
gross misuse of language to decorate with so fine a word the seizure
of a man’s property under the forms of law and to devote it to the
ostensible relief of want and suffering. It is the infliction of an
aggression that has no more warrant in a court of sound morals than the
seizure of his property in disregard of the forms of law. Yet this evil
has reached such vast proportions that Mr. Roberts was moved to protest
against it. After speaking of “the tendency of the State in building up
a gigantic system” that “will call for an enormous and ever-increasing
annual expenditure for maintenance,” he expressed the belief in 1896
that “the time has come to call a halt before this burden of taxation
becomes too heavy.” He then mentioned the significant fact that while
the State spent $6,000,000 for charity, $4,800,000 for public schools,
$800,000 for the militia, it spent only $500,000 for judges’ salaries!
He pointed out also that the expenditures under the head of charity had
increased from $1,468,471.58 in 1887 to $5,888,193.74 in 1897, or over
four hundred per cent in ten years. He added the prophecy that it would
be “a matter of a short time only when the annual expenditures for
charity alone in this State will reach $10,000,000.” At that time five
large State charitable institutions were in process of construction,
and were soon to be thrown open to the public. In the following year
he reverted to the subject in still stronger terms. “God forbid,” he
says, “that I should put a straw in the way of charity rationally
directed; but my four years’ experience as comptroller ... compels me
to say that charity is dispensed in this State with an almost lavish
hand, and in my judgment it is in many cases unwisely dispensed.” In
his last report to the Legislature the aggregate cost of the fourteen
great institutions in operation, with a population of 6,621, is put at

That this enormous largess, wrested from the taxpayers without the
slightest consideration for their own wants and sufferings, is unwisely
dispensed in many cases Mr. Roberts furnishes the amplest proof. The
charges that he brings against this form of State activity are most
serious. They reveal the same odious traits that characterize the
management of public affairs in no wise connected with the love of
humanity. “Nearly every locality,” says Mr. Roberts, “having a State
charitable institution deals with it as though it were established
to afford that locality an avenue through which to reach the State
treasury, and in most cases, where a majority of the managers live
under or are dominated by local influence, the avenue has been
profitably traveled. The result of such predominance is combination
among local dealers, a division of the furnishing of the supplies among
them at greatly advanced prices, the palming off upon the institution
of inferior articles which would find no sale in the market, a row
with the superintendent if he undertakes to expend money outside of
the locality, and, through friction and disturbance, the work of the
institution is more or less demoralized.” He charges that “the only
aim” of some institutions “seems to be the expenditure of their entire
appropriation, irrespective of the number of inmates provided for or
the results obtained.” Putting the same charge in another way, he says
that “the cost of an institution is more frequently based upon the
amount of the appropriation granted by the Legislature than upon its
real or apparent necessities.” When it is remembered that the managers
of the institutions against whom these astonishing charges are brought
are picked people, representing much more than the average character
and ability, the conclusion is not unnatural that ward heelers and
caucus packers have no monopoly of the rotten ethics of politics.

If we look a little further into the management of the institutions,
all the familiar footprints of the unscrupulous politician become
visible. Money appropriated for specific purposes is diverted from
them. Over fifty-five per cent of the amount expended in 1898 under
special appropriations was used for the benefit of two institutions,
leaving less than forty-five per cent for the remaining fourteen.
Plans for new buildings or the improvement of old are so changed as to
require an expenditure considerably in excess of the money appropriated
for the purpose. Not infrequently the excess ranges from twenty-five to
fifty per cent, and thus the way is paved for further appeals to the
Legislature to meet the dishonest deficits. A more reprehensible use
of public money is appropriations for new buildings and improvements
of old ones belonging to private institutions. As examples, Mr.
Roberts cites the expenditure of $77,473 upon the private property of
the Malone Institute for Deaf-Mutes, and $457,556 upon that of the
Randall’s Island Reformatory. “In my judgment,” he says, expressing an
opinion that every fair-minded person will approve, “this is a mistaken
public policy. If these institutions are to be steady recipients of
State aid for permanent improvements, the title of the property should
be transferred to the State.” Otherwise any philanthropist might found
a charitable institution to provide himself with congenial employment,
and, availing himself of the courtesy of the State to thrust his hands
into the pockets of his neighbors, make additions to it and keep it in

But these are by no means the only ways that money picked from the
pockets of taxpayers is poured into the bottomless pit of State
philanthropy. One of the most common and most expensive is the
unjustifiable increase of salaries. In 1894 and 1895, when the country
was still in the throes of the great panic of 1893 and when hundreds
of thousands of people were glad to get work at almost any pay, the
salary list of nine charitable institutions was increased forty
thousand dollars a year. Indefensible variations in the per capita cost
of practically the same service discloses another mode of waste. Mr.
Roberts gives elaborate tables in exposure of this evil. While the per
capita cost of the inmates of the Western House of Refuge for Women at
Albion is $254.27, that of the inmates of the House of Refuge for Women
at Hudson is $217.63. Again, while the per capita cost of the inmates
of the State Industrial School at Rochester is $219.49, that of the
inmates of the Reformatory on Randall’s Island is $210.59. Still again,
while the per capita cost of the inmates of the State School for the
Blind at Batavia is $313.74, that of the inmates of the Northern New
York Institute for Deaf-Mutes at Malone is $258.36. If it be remembered
that the institutions on Randall’s Island and at Malone are under
private management, the lower rate prevailing there, compared with the
higher rate at the Batavia and Rochester institutions, suggest a fact
of no slight significance. “Private institutions,” says Mr. Roberts,
calling attention to it, “are only paid in some instances $110 per
annum for the care and support of inmates, ... while the cost in State
institutions is more than $200 per annum.” Yet, despite the possible
indefinite multiplication of such facts, the “new” reformer pins his
faith to the State as a fit agent for the regeneration of his fellows.

Before leaving these institutions I must call attention to another
characteristic form of waste. I refer to the delicacies furnished to
the officials and inmates. “It has not seemed exactly right,” says
Mr. Roberts, setting forth the scandal in very moderate terms, “that
the taxpayers of the State should be required to pay for Blue Points,
lobster, terrapin, frogs’ legs, partridge, quail, venison, and most of
the delicacies of the season to supply the tables of officials already
well paid and well housed by the State.” But solicitude about table
economies was never known to be a trait of bureaucratic parasites. They
never trouble themselves to prolong their vision to the meager tables
of the poor and suffering robbed of the necessaries of life to load
theirs with luxuries. The same limited vision is exhibited on holidays
in their generosity at other people’s expense. “Is it fair,” says Mr.
Roberts, protesting against this touching display of human goodness,
“that the average workingman should wear poor clothes and live on plain
fare in order that he may bring up his family decently and honestly,
while the inmates of State institutions are indulged with turkey at
eighteen cents a pound, footballs at $4.83 each, oranges, candy, nuts,
ice cream, and expensive luxuries?... It must not be forgotten,” he
adds, mentioning a truth commonly forgotten even by people that have
reached a higher civilization than that of the average State official,
“that the money spent for these inmates is not voluntary contribution,
but is the product of enforced taxation.”[C]

    [C] But I ought to add that this mismanagement of State
        charitable institutions is duplicated in the management
        of other State departments that came under Mr. Roberts’s
        observation. Although more than $24,000,000 have been
        spent on the new Capitol, it proves to be too small
        for the purposes it was designed to meet. Mr. Roberts
        recommends the conversion of the old State Hall into a
        finance building. The State Library has become so large
        that it will soon require a separate building. The racing
        tax law was so bunglingly framed that the collections
        under it in 1896 were attended with “more difficulty and
        expense than usual.” As the forest-preserve law stood in
        1896, it permitted people purchasing State lands to strip
        them of lumber, and then, owing to certain irregularities
        connected with the sale, making it illegal, to recover the
        money originally paid with interest at six and seven per
        cent added. Because of the absence of any law covering
        the personal expenditures of members of legislative
        investigating committees, claims for seven and eight
        dollars a day are rendered, although four or five dollars
        a day are believed to be ample. Let me add that these
        investigations, which, during the period from 1879 to 1896
        inclusive, cost $823,534.51, reveal another source of
        waste from State management. Still another source of waste
        is State printing. Pointing out the “growing expenses of
        State printing,” Mr. Roberts shows that they have increased
        from $95,029.51 in 1887 to $315,585.81 in 1896. At one time
        the law was so defective that it was impossible to frame
        specifications for bids that would allow for printing of
        different kinds. For example, blanks varying from two to
        three inches square to two and three feet had to be classed
        in the same schedule and price. A needless quantity of
        reports is printed. Some of them are printed in the highest
        style of the art and richly embellished with expensive
        plates and engravings. One report for 1895 cost $42,000,
        and others cost as high as $20,000 and $30,000. “It does
        not seem logical,” says Mr. Roberts, commenting on this
        extravagance, “to spend as much on the illustration of a
        report as it costs for clerk hire in many departments.”
        Another evil is the failure of the Legislature to
        appropriate money enough to meet the printing bills each
        year, thus making it necessary either to borrow money to
        pay them or to compel the printer to wait for his pay
        at a loss of interest on the amount due him. In this
        connection attention must be called to the failure of the
        Legislature to provide money enough to cover expenditures
        during the period intervening before funds are available
        from taxation. Although Mr. Roberts recommended repeatedly
        legislation for the avoidance of this difficulty, which
        causes waste, no attention was paid to him. The management
        of court and trust funds by county treasurers has been
        particularly scandalous. In disregard of the express
        direction of the courts, thousands of dollars were retained
        by parties or their attorneys for their own personal
        benefit. Money has been paid out by county treasurers
        without certified orders of the courts merely upon the
        assurance of attorneys that the payments were proper. The
        rules framed by the comptroller in regard to this matter
        were constantly disregarded. Excessive allowances were made
        for costs of attorneys. In the case of one estate of $750,
        thus robbed, only $60 remained for the payment of the debts
        against it. By the defalcations of county treasurers, court
        and trust funds are often depleted, and the beneficiaries,
        often widows, orphans, and unfortunate litigants, are
        robbed. Mr. Roberts has recommended legislation on this
        subject, but no attention, as far as I know, has been paid
        to it. It is one of those “parochial” questions that the
        American people appear to have no taste for. But it would
        seem as if the protection of citizens, especially the poor
        and weak, was the first duty of the State.

Resistance to aggression is one of the fundamental instincts of the
human race. It has been enforced during countless ages by the penalty
of extermination. Only the people that refuse to be killed, or robbed
and enslaved, which are modified forms of the same crime, can respond
to a scriptural injunction; they alone can be fruitful, multiply, and
replenish the earth. All others must succumb to the pitiless law of the
survival of the fittest. Efforts to escape taxation not sanctioned by
justice, so common throughout the United States, are not, therefore,
exhibitions of hopeless depravity; they are exhibitions of the natural
desire for self-preservation that demands study and heed.

In New York State the efforts of taxpayers to escape this increasing
aggression have had a deplorable effect. To still the voice of
discontent and complaint, legislators have tried to lay on their
burdens as lightly as possible. Acting upon a familiar definition
of taxation, they have tried to pluck the goose so as to get the
most feathers with the least squawk. But in their observance of the
principles of humanity they have shown but slight regard for the
principles of economics or justice. Mr. Roberts characterizes their
enactments as “confused, illogical, and conflicting”; he adds that they
are “nearly all legislative makeshifts, and many of them blunders.”
The moral effect of the aggression has, however, been more disastrous
than either the economic or statutory. To escape it, the owners of
every class of property, no matter what their intelligence, their
religious professions, or their social standing, resort to every
possible subterfuge. With the cries of the tortured fowl ringing in
sympathetic ears, complaisant officials refuse to assess real estate,
as required by law, at its full value. “The assessor,” says Mr.
Roberts, describing this form of evasion and its evil consequences,
“undertakes, by reducing valuations on his own responsibility and in
defiance of law, to protect his own county or town from paying more
than its fair proportion of tax, and self-interest lulls the moral
sense of the community into support of his action.” The same law of
assessment applies to the whole State, yet there are twenty-five rates
of assessment in the sixty counties, and these rates range from fifty
to ninety-two per cent of the value of the land. The owners of personal
property avoid their obligations in a manner still more reprehensible.
They either conceal it or lie about it. While its amount during the
past forty years has reached the enormous total of $18,000,000,000,
or more than four times the value of the real estate, its assessed
value has not increased. It is Mr. Roberts’s conviction, based upon
“study and observation,” that not “more than three per cent” of it
is assessed. The result is that, although real estate pays a revenue
of over $9,000,000 a year, personal property pays one of only about
$1,000,000. As to the corporations, they are equally alert in avoiding
their obligations. Before the enactment of a recent law they did it by
watering their stocks and issuing bonds, thus creating an indebtedness
equal to their capital. They do it now by incorporating in other States
and carrying on business in this State. They do it also by neglecting
for a certain time to make the reports required by law, and then taking
refuge behind the statute of limitations. If the burdens thrust upon
them can not be shirked or borne, they fly to other States, where the
aggressions of the tax collector are less ruinous.

To compel officials to do their duty, countless expedients have been
invented from time immemorial. In the face of proof mountains high that
no legislative or administrative device can uproot the selfishness
imbedded in human nature or reshape the conduct molded to this
immutable fact, social quacks still continue to spawn their schemes
to work the miracle. Slight as is Mr. Roberts’s sympathy with them,
he is no exception. As a panacea for the dishonesty and incompetency
of the county treasurers that mismanage court and trust funds, he
recommends the substitution of State for local inspection. By a similar
application of hocus-pocus, he would transmute the extravagance of the
managers of charitable institutions into exemplary economy. Disgusted
with the charlatans in charge of certain duties connected with these
institutions requiring special skill and knowledge, he thinks “it would
be well to provide a corps of enthusiastic scientists ... who have more
than a pecuniary interest” in their work. But another recommendation of
his is a direct assault on this simple faith in the honor and integrity
of specialists. Already many of the departments of the State are in
the hands of men supposed to have a special aptitude and liking for
their duties. But Mr. Roberts finds that “leaving the department to
expend the money as it deems best,” instead of appropriating it for a
specific purpose, “is not in the interest of economy.” He says that
“it absolutely deprives the Legislature of that judicial scrutiny of
the necessity of appropriations” that “it should always exercise, and
leaves to the judgment of one what could often be better decided if
considered by several.” Could a deadlier blow be given to a common
theory that under government management we have the same division of
labor and the same perfect adjustment of means to ends that we have
under private management? What legislative body, chosen by universal
suffrage, the most perfect instrument ever invented for the selection
of incompetents, would enable it to exercise the supervision over the
thousand activities of life that Mr. Roberts recommends?

The same futile ingenuity exhibited in making officials do their
duty is exhibited in making taxpayers do theirs. One of the multitude
of plans suggested is a single tax on land; but that does not
seem promising, for it would not prevent the discriminations that
assessors make--discriminations that Mr. Roberts himself believes
to be beyond the reach of even State supervision. Another is a more
rigid enforcement of the personal-property tax; but this is equally
unpromising. “The fact is,” says Mr. Roberts, “that from the dawn
of civilization the wit of man has failed to discover a plan by
which intangible personal property could be made to pay its share of
taxation, and it will never be made to pay on the ordinary assessment
plan.” Besides the increase of taxes on corporations, the taxation of
franchises, which has just been authorized, and a general revision
and simplification of tax laws, it has been proposed that a graded
inheritance tax be adopted. Mr. Roberts is particularly enamored of
this idea. But his advocacy of it betrays the same disregard of the
rights of others, and leads to the same appeals to specious facts
and arguments that always accompany the commission of aggression in
politics as well as in war. His reasoning is that since “special
privileges conferred by government,” such as tariff laws, corporation
laws, public franchises, etc., are “the foundation of most of the
great fortunes of the country to-day”; since these fortunes are, to a
considerable extent, “composed of personal property” that “very largely
escapes taxation”; since the decedent has been “allowed the use and
enjoyment of his fortune during life,” and the beneficiary simply
pays “a fee for the privilege of receiving an estate in the creation
of which he had little or no hand”; and, finally, since he can make
no just complaint against the payment of such a fee, as his right to
receive his fortune “comes from the State--is by the grace of the
State”--the seizure at death of a certain percentage of all estates
beyond a prescribed amount would be only justice to “the mass of small
landowners and taxpayers who have from year to year borne more than
their equitable share of the burden of taxation.” But, the fallacies of
such an argument are easily exposed. The moral ownership of property
does not lie in the State; it lies in the labor and skill of the man
that accumulated the property. The moral title to a bequest does not
lie in that fiction either; it lies in the right of the decedent to do
whatever he pleases with his own. If great fortunes have been unjustly
acquired in consequence of special privileges a great wrong has been
committed, and it is not righted by the commission of another wrong.
The only reparation that can be made is to abolish the privileges. So
obvious a suggestion does not, however, appear to have occurred to Mr.

But even if all the reforms in taxation that could be imagined were
put in operation they would not meet the situation; they would not
deliver the American people from the great and alarming evil of
over-legislation and excessive taxation. An increase of revenue, like
an increase of supervision, is almost certain to increase the injustice
that it was designed to abate. The first year’s operation of the Raines
law contributed more than $3,500,000 to the State treasury, yet the
addition to the public expenditures that accompanied its enactment made
a high tax rate necessary. What the situation requires, therefore,
is not more but less social regulation and taxation. We need also a
gradual restriction of the duties of the State to the limits laid down
by Mr. Spencer--to the preservation of order and the enforcement of
justice. Although not apparently a disciple of that philosopher, Mr.
Roberts himself virtually subscribes to this view. In his last report
he demands “far greater economy and care in public expenditures, and no
further excursions in the field of social supervision and regulation.”




We have become accustomed to seeing photographs of the bones of
our hands, and we no longer stop at shop windows to look at X-ray
photographs. Indeed, they are rarely displayed, and the lecturer who
once gazed on a sea of faces as he endeavored to explain the most
marvelous electrical sensation of this century now addresses a mere
handful of listeners. Such patient hearers continuing to the end may
still hear of marvelous performances of this strange light of which the
great public are even now ignorant, and in this paper I shall take my
readers into a physical laboratory and endeavor to make the generally
unknown manifestation of the new rays plain and free from technical
language. I am sure that we shall all leave the laboratory with our
imagination full of thoughts of unknown movements in the air about
us--thoughts of possible telepathic waves through space, conceptions of
new ranges of nerve excitations, hopes of new lights, conceptions of
the vastness of the electrical whirls in that elevated region where the
molecules of the air, in their endeavor to fly into the abyss of space,
are controlled by the earth’s forces and are endowed with electrical
energy by the sun.

In the first place, what is the present state of our knowledge of
the X rays? Have we more efficient methods of producing them, and
can we see farther into the recesses of the human body? In regard
to the first question, we can say that, although we may not be able
to answer dogmatically that we know what these rays are, we have
valuable hints in regard to their character, and our knowledge of their
manifestations and their relation to light waves and magnetic waves
has greatly increased during the four years which have elapsed since
their discovery. They are now believed by the best authorities to be
magnetic and electrical pulses, or waves of extremely short length. In
the spectrum of sunlight formed by sending a beam through a prism of
quartz the X-ray pulses or waves are to be found, according to this
hypothesis, beyond the violet color of this spectrum--far into the dark
region invisible to the eye, and only brought into view at present by
the aid of photography. In this invisible region reside many singular
manifestations of energy closely analogous to those of the X rays. The
ultra-violet rays invisible to the eye have the property of refraction.
They can be bent out of their course by prisms made of quartz. The
X rays, however, can not be directed from a straight course. This
is their greatest peculiarity, and many attempts, both mathematical
and experimental, have been made to elucidate it. It is not a fatal
objection to the X rays being classed with light waves, for, under
certain conditions, even light waves can be made to lose the power of
being bent aside.

Leaving for the present a further discussion of the question What are
the X rays? let us examine what the actual condition of the art of
using the rays is. Many attempts have been made to improve the Crooke’s
tube, in which the rays are produced, but, like the hand telephone,
its form has remained substantially unaltered since the first flush
of discovery. Its present form consists of a bulb of thin glass,
exhausted of air, containing a little concave mirror of aluminum, and
opposite to this, separated by a gap of several inches, is an inclined
sheet of thin platinum, called the focus plane, or anticathode. The
electrical discharge passes between this plane and the mirror, and the
X rays are thrown off from the inclined sheet of platinum. They are
not reflected in the ordinary sense of the term, but the electric rays
converge from the mirror to a spot on the platinum which glows with a
red heat, and the X rays emanate from the heated spot as if it were
their source. Thousands of investigators have endeavored to improve
the form of tube, but, with several important minor appendages, it
still maintains the principal features of an aluminum concave mirror
and an inclined plane of platinum. Aluminum is found to be the best
metal for the mirror from which the rays are generated, largely because
its metallic particles are not torn off by the discharge, as would
be the case if it were made of platinum. It is also light, and can be
easily fixed to a platinum wire. Among the important modifications of
the tube are those which enable the operator to control the degree of
vacuum in the tube. This is accomplished by sealing to the main tube
an appendage containing certain chemicals which, on being heated, give
off a small amount of vapor, and which take it up again on cooling.
This modification is made necessary by the singular fact that after a
Crooke’s tube is submitted to an electrical discharge for some time
the vacuum becomes more and more complete, and a higher and higher
electro-motive force or pressure is needed to produce the discharge
in the tube. It prefers in time to jump over the surface. Thus, at
the very beginning of our use of the X rays we meet with a mystery.
Where do the remaining particles of air go? It is surmised that they
disappear in the platinum terminals.

[Illustration: FIG. 1.--The evolution of the Crooke’s tube.]

The manufacture of the X-ray tubes tests technical skill and the
patience of the experimenter more highly, perhaps, than the preparation
of any apparatus used in science. Glass working is a difficult art,
and requires an absolute devotion to it. There is only one metal
known which will enable an electrical discharge to pass into and out
of a rarefied space inclosed by glass. This is platinum. A wire of
this metal can be sealed into glass so that no air can leak into an
exhausted space around the joints. All electric lamps, so commonly used
in electric lighting, have little wires of platinum at their bases, by
means of which the electric current enters and leaves the bulb. The
Crooke’s tube is in principle an Edison lamp with the filament broken.
The maker of Crooke’s tubes should complete the making of the tube
at one sitting, for reheating of the tube is very apt to lead to a
disastrous cracking of the glass. He must take the utmost precautions
against unequal heating and sudden cooling, and he must, above all,
have phenomenal patience.

Fig. 1 shows the evolution of the Crooke’s tube which is used to
produce the X rays. The first form of tube was barely larger than a
goose’s egg. The size has been gradually increased, and at present it
is three or four times larger than the original form. The interior
arrangement has not been materially changed, and consists, as we have
said, of a concave mirror, which constitutes the negative electrode,
and an inclined sheet of platinum, from which the X rays seem to

The later forms of tube have accessory chambers, filled with certain
chemicals, which, on being slightly heated, reduce the vacuum to the
desired point. Certain forms of tubes have merely an additional chamber
which, on being heated, reduces the vacuum in the main vessel. The
latest form of tube, devised by Dr. William Rollins, of Boston, has a
hollow anode tube (_B C_, Fig. 1), through which a current of water
can circulate in order to save the tube from breaking. The end of this
anode tube is small, in order to form a sharp radiant point of light.
One of the platinum wires (_P_) inserted in the tube projects outside
some distance. When the vacuum becomes too high in the tube, this
platinum wire is slightly heated in a gas flame; then the flame is
blown out and the hydrogen is allowed to flow against the heated wire.
A sufficient amount of the gas is absorbed by the heated wire to reduce
the vacuum in the tube. This tube stands very powerful electrical
discharges, and is the most scientifically designed tube at the command
of the experimenter.

There are three methods of generating the electrical discharge which
produces the rays. The commonest method is that in which the Ruhmkorf
coil is used. This coil is what is now known as a transformer, and
consists of one coil of a few turns of coarse wire, which is connected
to a battery or other source of electricity, and of another coil
surrounding the first of a great number of turns of fine wire. Any
sudden change of the battery current produces an electric pressure or
electro-motive force at the ends of the fine coil of wire. By this
simple arrangement of two coils we can thus exalt a current of low
pressure to one of high electro-motive force. A battery current which
can barely produce an electric spark of one hundredth of an inch at the
ends of the coarse coil can cause a spark of eight inches or more at
the terminals of a fine coil.

In the second method one uses an ordinary electrical machine in which
the glass plates are supplanted by rubber ones, which are run at a
high rate of speed. Both of these methods have their advocates. The use
of the Ruhmkorf coil is the most universal.

The third method consists in charging a number of Leyden jars by a
storage battery and in discharging these one after another, so as to
obtain a high electro-motive force. This method is a very flexible one.
I can experiment with my apparatus over a range of electric pressure
extending from twenty thousand units to three million. The electrical
discharge produced by three million units or volts is over six feet in

The apparatus for discharging the Leyden jars or condensers in series
is represented in Fig. 2.

[Illustration: FIG. 2.--Apparatus for producing electrical sparks six
feet in length.]

A fourth method, first used by Professors Norton and Goodwin, of the
Massachusetts Institute of Technology, consists in discharging a
quantity of electricity through the coarse coil of a Ruhmkorf coil.
This method obviates the necessity of a mechanical break to interrupt
the battery current which is employed to excite the current in the
coarse coil of this apparatus.

I have experimented with more powerful quantities of electricity than
have been hitherto used. The accompanying photograph gives an idea of
the magnitude of the quantity which I can use to excite the X rays.

It represents the discharge, burning a fine iron wire, and it makes a
noise resembling the crack of a pistol. Now, this discharge can be used
in a variety of ways to excite various transformers in order to produce
the best conditions for exciting the X rays. The method of using this
powerful discharge to excite a transformer seems at present the most
promising one in seeking the best conditions for obtaining rays of high
penetrating power.

There is still another method of obtaining the rays yet in its
infancy--the simplest method of all, for no apparatus is required.

It has been discovered that certain substances, like the salts of
uranium, have the power of emitting rays which have all the properties
of the X rays. The list of such substances is constantly increasing,
and they are called radio-active substances. It is possible to take a
shadow picture of the hand through a board by placing the hand on a
covered sensitive plate, resting the board on the back of the hand,
and strewing the board with one of these radio-active substances in
the form of a powder. Can it be that all the skill and industry which
has been employed to perfect X-ray apparatus is to be supplanted by
a powder? The peculiar property shown by the radio-active substances
leads investigators to surmise that we have evidence of new substances,
and we have the waves radium and polonium.

[Illustration: FIG. 3.--The burning of an iron wire by the most
powerful electric discharge yet produced.]

The methods by which the X rays are detected in practical employment in
surgery have not been essentially changed. The ordinary photographic
plate, shielded in a plate holder, is still used to receive the
shadow cast by the bones, and salts of barium or of calcium strewn
on pasteboard serve as fluorescent screens to receive on their
luminous surfaces these shadows and to make them evident to the eye.
An interesting use of flexible sensitive films instead of glass plates
has been made in dentistry. The films are put in the mouth, and the
Crooke’s tube placed outside in such a position that the rays can pass
through the jaw. In this way the accompanying photographs were taken
(Fig. 4).[D]

    [D] Kindness of Dr. Dwight M. Clapp, Boston.

[Illustration: FIG. 4.--1. Male patient, aged ten years. Temporary
incisors in position with the permanent incisors nearly ready to erupt.
The roots of the temporary teeth nearly absorbed. Right temporary
central cut incisor destroyed by a blow five years previous, showing
gutta-percha filling put in at the time which, with the dead root,
has been absorbed (same as the live root of the other central). It is
taught in the text-books that teeth with dead nerves are not absorbed.
2. Temporary molars in position with no signs of the permanent bicuspid
which should take its place. 3. Patient, aged ten years. Shows the open
ends of the incisor roots. 4. Shows one bicuspid and two molar teeth.
The roots of the teeth pass through the floor of and into the cavity
of the antrum. The spongy character of the bone is shown. 5 and 6.
Superior jaw, right and left sides, showing temporary cuspid teeth in
place, with the permanent cuspids imbedded in the jaw entirely covered.]

The use of photographic films in the application of the X rays
in surgery will doubtless extend; we can easily imagine cases
where the necessity of the use of the knife may be avoided by the
information which a carefully placed film might afford. In general,
X-ray photographs convey more information to the skilled eye of the
specialist than to the untrained inspector of them. They should be
studied from the negatives themselves, for the delicate details can not
be reproduced in a print. It is remarkable that shadow pictures can
show so much definition. Here is a photograph of an elbow joint which
shows the texture of the bones (Fig. 5).[E]

    [E] Taken by Professor Goodspeed, University of Pennsylvania.

The use of the fluorescent screen, too, has been greatly extended. Dr.
Francis H. Williams, of Boston, has used it as a valuable instrument
in medical diagnosis, especially in studying lung diseases. It has
been used at the Harvard Medical School to follow the processes of
digestion. To accomplish this, in one instance a goose was fed with
food mixed with subnitrate of bismuth, a salt which absorbs X rays.

[Illustration: FIG. 5.--Photograph of an elbow joint, showing the
texture of the bones.]

The passage of the dark mass down the long neck of the bird could be
traced on the fluorescent screen, and the peculiarities of its motion
in the gullet could be studied. A cat was also fed with the same
substance, and the movements of its stomach noted. These movements were
analogous to those of the heart--in other words, were rhythmical when
the processes of digestion were going on normally and uninterruptedly.
When, however, the cat was irritated, it may be by the sight of a dog,
these pulsations instantly ceased. As soon as the source of vexation
was removed and the purring of the animal showed a contented frame of
mind, the stomach resumed its rhythmical movements. The dependence of
the digestive apparatus on the state of the nervous system was thus
clearly shown. The female cat was much more tractable under these
experiments than the male.

The use of the X rays is accompanied with some danger if the Crooke’s
tube is not properly used. A long exposure to the X rays is apt to
produce bad burns which are like sunburns, and lead in certain cases
to bad ulcerations. They are long in healing and are characterized by
a peculiar red glow, especially on exposure to a cold wind. To prevent
them one should place a sheet of thin aluminum between the Crooke’s
tube and the part of the body submitted to the rays. This sheet should
be connected to the earth. This fact should be borne in mind when we
come to speak of the electrical region outside a Crooke’s tube.

Many investigators, reflecting upon the singular fact that the rays
pass so freely through thin aluminum and that, on the contrary,
glass absorbs such a large percentage, concluded that Crooke’s tubes
provided with aluminum windows would be an improvement upon the thin
incandescent lamplike bulbs now used. The glass of these bulbs is very
thin, not more than one thousandth of an inch in thickness, where the
rays emerge, not thicker than a sheet of ordinary note paper, and
the absorption of such a sheet of glass is so small that it can not
be detected by photography. Thus a sliver of glass of this thickness
in the hand would not appear on the X-ray photograph of this member,
and would not cast a shadow in the fluoroscope. There does not
seem, therefore, any advantage in supplying a Crooke’s tube with an
aluminum window. The mechanical difficulties, too, in accomplishing
this are very great. There is no way of joining the thin aluminum
disk to the glass so that an air-tight joint can be made. In the
process of exhausting the Crooke’s tube, the tube must be heated to
a comparatively high temperature in order to drive off the air which
clings to the inside of the glass. The rise of temperature would soften
or melt any current which might be used to make the aluminum adhere to
the glass.

We can not expect, therefore, any improvement in the direction of
aluminum windows. At one time, I suppose that the rays were highly
absorbed in passing through atmospheric air, and that it would be an
improvement in the application of the rays to surgery to interpose, so
to speak, a vacuum chamber between the body and the source of the X
rays. The experiment led to some interesting results, but not in the
direction anticipated.

The vacuum chamber consisted of a glass cylinder three feet long and
about eight inches in diameter. The two ends were closed by sheets of
aluminum, and it could be exhausted through a side tube. The reader
will immediately ask, in view of what has been said, How could the
glass tube be hermetically closed with sheets of aluminum? This was
indeed a difficult matter, but less difficult than in the case of the
Crooke’s tube, for the ends of the glass cylinder were provided with
heavy brass flanges, which were perfectly flat, and the sheets of
aluminum lying smoothly could be confined by many bolts between the
flange and suitable brass heads. This cylinder, having been exhausted,
was placed between the Crooke’s tube and the arm, for instance, in
the hope that a greater depth of human flesh and tissue might be
penetrated by the rays. It was speedily seen that the absorption of
the layer of air three feet thick could not be detected either by
photographs or the fluorescent screen. The glass cylinder was then
filled with rarefied hydrogen, but no advantage was apparent. If the
photographs of the human hand were taken, one through the rarefied
cylinder and the other through an equivalent thickness of air, no
difference in clearness or depth of definition could be perceived. The
amount of absorption by a column of air three feet in length is less
than ten per cent. This result interested me greatly, for it shows the
remarkable difference between the X rays and the cathode rays, which
had been investigated by Crooke, Hittorf, and Lenard; for the cathode
rays are greatly absorbed by atmospheric air, being reduced in passing
through five or six inches of air to one four-hundredth part of their

The small amount of absorption of the X rays lifts them into the realm
of very short wave lengths of light, for their behavior in regard to
the absorption by air is very analogous to that of ultra-violet rays.
Although the vacuum chamber, by which I looked, showed no absorption
of the X rays, it disclosed a beautiful phenomenon. In a dark room
this large tube, three feet long and eight inches wide, was filled
with a roseate light, which wavered like the northern lights when the
Crooke’s tube was emitting the X rays. If the finger was brought near
the glass walls of the cylinder a stream of light apparently emanated
from a point on the inside wall of the cylinder. The hand thus had
ghostly streamers giving an image of it, although the hand itself was
invisible. These banners of light could be diverted in any direction
by the hand or by any conducting body brought near, and gave a vivid
conception of how the streaming of the aurora can be brought about by
this flitting of conducting clouds or the drifting of moisture-laden
strata of air below the rarefied space in which the beams of the
northern light dart back and forth. Both in the case of the Crooke’s
tube and the aurora these streamers are produced by electrical
discharges through rarefied air. The experiments show that outside the
Crooke’s tube there is a strong electrical attraction and repulsion,
which is only revealed in darkness and in a cold, lifeless, airless
space, such as exists between us and the sun. Can we not extend our
thoughts from the contemplation of this laboratory experiment to that
of the immensely greater play of electrical forces between the earth
and the sun across the immense vacant space ninety millions of miles in

The mysterious effects of the X rays on the molecules in the air form
a great subject of inquiry, and the investigation of it promises to
extend our knowledge of electricity and light and heat. When the
Crooke’s tube is excited we are conscious of a mysterious activity
within it, for its glass walls glow with a phosphorescent light, and
if certain crystals, like the diamond or the ruby, are placed in the
tube, this phosphorescent light is vivid. Outside the tube, in free
air, these luminescent effects are also present. The air is under an
electrical strain, which is shown by the auroral streamers when this
air is rarefied, and an electrical charge can not be maintained on a
pith ball--it is dissipated in some strange manner. Still stranger,
an electrical current is greatly aided by the X rays in its endeavor
to pass through air--they make for the time being air a conductor.
Furthermore, these rays separate the air into positively laden and
negatively laden particles.

The electrical discharge in the Crooke’s tube is many-sided in its
manifestations. Its energy seems all-pervading in the room where it
occurs. Before the discharge passes through the rarefied space in the
tube its energy manifests itself by a crackling spark, a miniature
lightning discharge. This spark, five or six inches in length, can
send out magnetic waves which extend far beyond the narrow limits of
the room. They can be detected, by the methods of wireless telegraphy,
fifty miles. When the same amount of energy is developed in a Crooke’s
tube the magnetic waves hardly pass beyond the walls of the room, and
the phenomenon of phosphorescence and fluorescence and the strange
molecular effects outside the Crooke’s tube spring into prominence.
The crackling spark outside the tube is far-reaching in its effect,
yet it shows no signs of the X rays, its light can not penetrate the
human body, it excites only a feeble phosphorescence at a distance
of even two or three feet, while the same energy excited in the
Crooke’s tube can cause luminescence at a distance of twenty feet.
The crackling spark, however, can be seen much farther than the light
of the Crooke’s tube, and it can also impress a photographic plate at
much greater distance. The following experiments will illustrate the
different manifestations of energy of which an electrical discharge
is capable. I produced an electrical spark about six inches in length
and exposed a photographic plate for six seconds, at a distance of
two, ten, and twenty feet, to its light. A thin strip of tin, with a
circular hole cut in it, served as a shutter. The sensitive plate was
thus protected, except in front of this aperture. The images exhibit
the decrease in light with the increase of distance. Another portion
of the sensitive plate was exposed in the same manner during the same
length of time to the light of a Crooke’s tube which was excited by
this same spark. No image was obtained at a distance of ten feet,
and barely one at three feet. The spark in air, therefore, was far
more energetic photographically than the X rays, but it could not
penetrate solid materials. This property was given to it by its passage
through rarefied space. I then covered a screen with a phosphorescent
substance, and exposed it to the spark in air. The phosphorescent light
could barely be detected at a distance of three feet, while with a
spark in rarefied air it could be seen at a distance of twenty feet.

When we consider these experiments we see that the X rays act toward
phosphorescent matter much as the spark in air behaves toward the
photographic plate. Now, these results, taken in connection with the
strong electrical effects in the neighborhood of an excited Crooke’s
tube, points to a certain connection between phosphorescence and
electricity. Can it be that the strange light is excited by very short
electrical waves sent out from the tube, which can not travel far
but are very active in producing molecular effects? This activity,
indeed, may prevent their extending to great distances. Wireless
telegraphy evidently depends upon one set of waves sent out by a spark,
and X-ray photographs upon another set developed only in rarefied
air. Phosphorescence can not be produced with ease by the spark in
air. On the contrary, it is developed to a remarkable degree and
at comparatively great distances by the discharge in rarefied air.
It has been shown by Mr. Burbank and myself that electrical force
can develop phosphorescent light in certain crystals. The sunlight
can do the same. Is sunlight an electrical phenomenon? That it is
constitutes the greatest hypothesis in physics of this century. When
we reflect, too, that the phosphorescence of the firefly is excited by
some manifestation of a living organism--nerve force or some related
force--shall we not include nerve force in the electrical category?

The X rays, therefore, bring into prominence strange lights which had
heretofore been noticed chiefly by keen-eyed investigators, and which,
with their names, phosphorescence and fluorescence, were unknown to the
bulk of mankind. The fluorescent screen, by means of which surgeons
observe the skeleton of the body, has now taken its place in medical
practice with the stethoscope, by which the mechanism of the lungs is
studied, and hopes have been excited that the blind may yet use the
X rays in detecting objects and in regaining a sense of vision, even
though this sense may be only partial. It is a curious fact that the
retina of the eye is phosphorescent and fluorescent, and that one can
see the shadow of certain objects in the dark when one stands so that
the feeble X rays fall upon the eye. In other words, the retina acts
as a fluorescent screen. The eye at present recognizes only a limited
number of the waves that are surging about us. We can see the colors
from red to violet, but the dark colors, so to speak, formed by waves
longer than 1/40000 of an inch and shorter than 1/100000 of an inch
make no recognizable impress upon our retina, unless, indeed, they
constitute telepathic signals which apparently stir our consciousness
and make us believe that friends are communicating from a distance. The
electrical discharge has lifted, so to speak, a realm of short waves of
energy out of the darkness and made them visible. Can the human brain
be made conscious of other waves which fill space?

But we have not by any means exhausted the protean manifestations
of the X rays. Besides the photographic, the phosphorescent, and
fluorescent effects, there are still more singular properties of these
rays. One of the most striking consists in their opening a path for a
current of electricity. The electrical discharge, feeble in itself,
not capable of lifting by means of a motor a pound weight a foot from
the floor, is yet competent to open a path for a current which can
set all the trolley cars of a great city in motion. To exhibit this
mysterious effect we bring the ends of the electrical current which
we wish to excite near each other, but not touching, in a glass tube
with thin walls, from which the air has been exhausted. When the X rays
fall on the gap between the wires the electrical current immediately
jumps across the gap with a vivid light. We have here the mechanism
of an electrical relay--the feeble energy of the electric discharge
can call into play a giant energy. By what energy does it accomplish
this? Is it by compelling molecules to put themselves in line, so that
the electrical current can bridge the gap? Is it by breaking down
this mysterious ether of space, as if we threw a stone at a turbid
bull’s eye in a prison chamber and let in a flood of sunlight? How the
imagination is stirred by this process, what seems dead and lifeless
can, by a physical agency, be stirred to endless activity! The rays are
like the touch of Ithuriel’s spear.

The electrical discharge can accomplish all this, but the story of
its activity is not yet told. It can not be told, for each year adds
information in regard to these activities, for there are thousands
of investigators at work. Another far-reaching manifestation is
this: the rays can separate the air or a gas into its constituent
particles, much as a strong electrical current separates water into
oxygen and hydrogen. They can communicate electrical charges to these
particles--positive and negative charges. The charged air-particles,
when forced through partitions of spun glass, does not give up their
electricity as they do when they are charged by an electrical machine.
This curious manifestation leads me to suspect that the electricity
and magnetism of the earth may be caused by an X-ray effect on our
atmosphere. The sun and the earth are separated like the terminals of
a Crooke’s tube--two conductors with a vacuum between. An electrical
excitation from the sun may cause an electrical discharge between it
and the earth. This discharge might consist of an X-ray effect which
could separate the upper layers of the atmosphere into positive and
negative charges. The velocity of the negatively charged particles is
greater than that of the positively charged ones, and the revolution
of the earth may cause such a movement of these electrified particles
that electrical currents may be generated which in circulation around
the earth could produce the observed magnetism of the north and south
poles, together with the auroral lights characteristic of those
regions. This, I am well aware, is an audacious theory. It is certainly
a vast extension of the laboratory experiments I have described, but
the electrical radiations developed in electrical discharges are as
competent to produce powerful magnetic whirls as the heat radiations
in our atmosphere to develop cyclones. In the lower regions of our
atmosphere the air is an insulator like glass to the passage of an
electrical current. A layer a foot thick can prevent the circulation of
the most powerful current which is now used to generate horse power.
When this air space is rarefied at a certain degree of rarefaction
the electrical current passes, especially, as we have seen, if it is
illuminated by the X rays. When, therefore, we ascend to a height of
ten or twenty miles the rarefied air becomes an excellent conductor of
electricity of high electro-motive force. To my mind the conditions
exist for developing an electrical state in the earth’s covering of
air, which is competent to explain the electrical manifestations of
the air, the auroral gleam, and the mysterious effect on the magnetic
needle which keeps it directed to the magnetic north. Can not we
conclude that the study of the X rays bids fair to greatly extend
our conceptions of the constitution of matter and of the action and
interaction of Nature’s forces?

       *       *       *       *       *

    A Himalayan explorer reported, a few years ago, that he had seen,
    from one of the lofty summits of the Mount Everest district, a peak
    which, beheld in the same view with Mount Everest, was evidently
    higher than it. Nothing has been heard of the matter since then
    till the recent appearance of Major L. A. Waddell’s book, Among
    the Himalayas. This author, who has explored the same region,
    represents that the Tibetans there say there is another mountain,
    due north of Mount Everest, that exceeds that peak in height, thus
    confirming the story of the former Alpinist. It appears that Mount
    Everest is not called Gaurisankar or Deodunga, as some affirm,
    but that the Tibetan name of the culminating peak of the group is
    _Jomokang-kar_--“The Lady White Glacier.”




It is hardly an exaggeration to say that chemistry, as a science, is
the creation of the nineteenth century. Chemical facts, indeed, were
known even in remote antiquity; some principles were dimly anticipated
long before the century began; Boyle had given the first rational
definition of an element; the principal gases had been discovered;
great foundations were laid, ready for the superstructure. But the
making of bricks is not architecture, nor does the accumulation
of details constitute a science. The scattered facts are needful
preliminaries, but only with the discovery of laws and the development
of broad generalizations does true science begin.

That truth can be born from error may seem paradoxical, but,
nevertheless, the statement is exact. False hypotheses stimulate
investigation, and so truth comes at last to light. In the history
of chemistry this principle is clearly illustrated. During the
eighteenth century the doctrine of phlogiston was generally accepted;
this led to exhaustive researches upon combustion, and from these the
science of chemistry received its present shape. Becher and Stahl
had taught that every combustible substance contained a combustible
principle--_phlogiston_--and that to the elimination of this principle
the phenomena of combustion were due. According to this theory, a metal
was regarded as a compound of its calx, or oxide, with phlogiston;
hydrogen became a compound of water with phlogiston, and so the truth
was curiously inverted. The doctrine was vigorously and ingeniously
defended, and, although it was overthrown by Lavoisier, it had
persistent supporters even after the present century began.

The weak point of the phlogistic theory was its practical disregard of
the phenomena of weight. That the calx weighed more than the metal was
well known, but quantitative considerations were subordinated to those
of quality, and the form of matter was studied rather than its mass.

In 1770 the scientific career of Lavoisier began, and the balance
became a chief instrument in chemical research. The constancy of
weight during chemical change was experimentally established, and
what had been a philosophical speculation--the increatability and
indestructibility of matter--became a doctrine of science, a datum
of knowledge instead of a hypothetical belief. In 1774 Priestley and
Scheele independently discovered oxygen, and with the aid of the
balance the phenomena of combustion were rendered intelligible. The
foundations of chemistry were laid, and upon them the nineteenth
century has built. Lavoisier, the greatest of the founders, fell a
victim to the guillotine; the judge who condemned him refused all
appeals for mercy, saying “the republic has no need for _savants_,”
but the necessity which judicial ignorance could not foresee presently
made itself felt. France, at war with all Europe, her ports closed to
supplies from without, fell back upon her own resources. Saltpeter
was needed for her guns, alkali for her industries, and the chemist
was called upon for help. The stress of continued warfare stimulated
intellectual activity, and one result was the creation of chemical
processes which revolutionized more than one industry. The dependence
of modern civilization upon science then began to be recognized--a
dependence which is, perhaps, the chief characteristic of the present

With the opening of the new century a period of great activity began.
The constancy of matter was well established, and the fundamental
distinction between elements and compounds was clearly recognized; two
starting points for exact research had been gained. Only a small number
of elements, however, had been identified as such; of some substances
it was doubtful whether they were elementary or not, but the mine was
open and a rich body of ore was in sight. Furthermore, the utility of
research had become evident, so that intellectual curiosity received a
new stimulus and a new direction. Theory and practice became partners,
and have worked together to this day.

Between the years 1803 and 1808 one of the greatest advances, in
scientific chemistry was made, when John Dalton announced and developed
his famous atomic theory. In this we find a notable illustration of the
difference between metaphysics and science. The conception of matter as
made up of atoms, as discrete rather than continuous, was a commonplace
of philosophical speculation. It had been taught by Democritus and
Lucretius; it was the theme of wordy wrangles during centuries;
Swedenborg, Higgins, and other writers had sought to apply it to the
discussion of chemical phenomena; but it remained only a speculation,
unfruitful for discovery. Up to the time of Dalton it had led to
nothing but intellectual gymnastics.

A good scientific theory is never a product of the unaided imagination;
it must serve some purpose in the correlation of phenomena which
suggest it to the mind. This was the case with Dalton’s discovery,
which grew out of his observations upon definite and multiple
proportions. That every chemical compound has a fixed and definite
composition was recognized by Lavoisier, and by other chemists before
him; but the fact was disputed by Berthollet, and its verity was not
established until 1808. Dalton went a step further, and found that to
every element a definite combining number could be assigned, and that
when two elements united in more than one proportion even multiples of
that number appeared. Thus, taking the hydrogen weight as unity, oxygen
always combines with other elements in the proportion of eight parts
or some simple multiple thereof, and so on through the entire list of
elementary bodies. Each one has its own combining weight, and this was
the law for which Dalton sought an adequate explanation. Fractions of
the weights did not appear, fractional atoms could not exist; the two
thoughts were connected by Dalton. Chemical union, to his mind, became
a juxtaposition of atoms, whose relative weights were indicated by
their combining numbers, and so the atomic conception for the first
time was given quantitative expression. The facts were co-ordinated,
the special laws were combined in one general theory, and the mere
suppositions of other men were supplanted by a precise statement,
which is a corner stone of chemistry to-day. The doctrine led at once
to investigations, it rendered possible the discovery of new truth,
chemical formulæ and chemical equations were developed from it; without
its aid the growth of chemical science would probably have been
slow. The nature of the atoms may be in doubt, they may be divisible
or indivisible, but the value of the theory is independent of such
considerations. It gives adequate expression to known laws, and it can
only be set aside, if ever, by absorption into some wider and deeper

The same year which saw the completion of Dalton’s theory (1807) was
also signalized by the remarkable discoveries of Sir Humphry Davy, who
decomposed the alkalies and proved them to be compounds of metals.
In 1810 chlorine, which was previously thought to be a compound, was
proved to be elementary, and this fact was emphasized a year later
by the discovery of iodine. These researches gave precision to the
conception of an element, and prepared the way for later investigations
upon many other oxides. All the so-called “earths”--lime, magnesia,
alumina, and so on--were now seen to be oxy-compounds of metals, and
an intelligent interpretation of all forms of inorganic matter became
possible. The first step in the chain of research was the discovery
of oxygen itself; from that, and from the teachings of Lavoisier, the
later discoveries logically followed.

While the investigations of Dalton and of Davy were still incomplete,
other chemists were actively studying the properties of gases and
exploring the fertile border-land between chemistry and physics. In
1805 Gay-Lussac and Humboldt determined the composition of water by
_volume_; in 1808 Gay-Lussac extended these observations, and found
that in all compound gases simple volumetric relations existed; and
in 1811 the entire subject was generalized into Avogadro’s law.
Avogadro showed that equal volumes of gases, compared under equivalent
conditions, must contain equal numbers of molecules, and although the
force of his discovery was not fully appreciated until much later,
it is now recognized as one of the fundamental propositions of both
physics and chemistry. For the first time the distinction between atoms
and molecules was clearly stated, and from the density of a gas the
relative weight of its molecule could be calculated. Avogadro’s law
rounded out and completed the atomic theory, and to its application
much of the advance in organic chemistry is due. Equally striking, but
less far-reaching in its consequences, was the discovery announced by
Dulong and Petit in 1819, when it was shown that the specific heat of
an element was inversely proportional to its atomic weight. Otherwise
stated, this law asserts that the atoms of all the elements have the
same capacity for heat, and an important check upon determinations of
atomic weight was thus provided.

The next twenty years in the history of chemistry were years of
detail rather than of permanent generalizations. The multitudinous
verification of known laws, the development of experimental methods,
especially methods of analysis, the discovery of new elements, the
preparation of numberless new compounds, occupied the attention of most
workers. This period, which may be called the Berzelian period, was
enormously fruitful in results, although but few of the theories then
proposed have survived to the present day. During this period the name
and influence of Berzelius overshadowed all others, and his marvelous
researches, carried out in a laboratory which was hardly more than
a kitchen, were of almost incredible variety. For the crude symbols
of Dalton, Berzelius substituted a system of chemical formulæ which
could be used in chemical equations; in 1818 and 1826 he published
tables of atomic weights, determined with far greater exactness than
ever before; he discovered five new elements and a multitude of
compounds, devised methods of research, and proposed theories which,
though later to be overthrown, for many years dominated chemical
science. His electro-chemical experiments led him to his dualistic
theory of compounds, which interpreted each compound as made up of two
parts--one positive, the other negative. The electro-positive oxides
were basic, the electro-negative groups were acid; chemical affinity
was electrical attraction between the two opposites; chemical union
implied a neutralization of one by the other. These ideas were more
than speculation, for they rested upon experiment and led to further
experimental research; but they went too far, and therefore could
not last. The theory, however, contained much that was true, and the
formulæ developed by it gave the first general suggestion of what is
now known as chemical structure or constitution. The later study of
organic compounds led up to the modern views.

Although Berzelius and many other chemists did some work upon organic
compounds, their era was chiefly identified with inorganic researches.
Mineral chemistry received a great deal of attention, the relatively
simple acids, bases, and salts were studied, but the compounds of
carbon were thought to be more complex and received less consideration.
To-day, at the close of the century, nearly seventy thousand organic
compounds are known, and of these comparatively few were discovered
before the year 1830. Since then organic chemistry has been the
dominant line of investigation.

Among the earlier chemists of the nineteenth century it was commonly
supposed that organic and inorganic matter were radically different,
and that the former could only be produced by the operation of a
peculiar vital force. To this view there were some dissentients,
Berzelius among them, but experimental proof for their contention
was lacking. In 1827, however, Wöhler succeeded in transforming the
inorganic ammonium cyanate into the organic urea, and the barrier was
broken down. The era of synthetic chemistry had begun. Still earlier,
in 1823, Liebig had found that silver cyanate and silver fulminate
possessed the same percentage composition; in 1825 Faraday discovered
an isomer of ethylene; and Wöhler’s research now gave a third example
of the same kind. Two different substances could contain the same
elements in the same proportions, and to explain this fact Berzelius
inferred different arrangements of atoms within the molecule, and
suggested that their mode of union might be determined. A working
theory, however, was still lacking, and without it progress was
necessarily slow. The dualistic hypothesis explained the phenomena
only in part, and as the known facts increased in number it had to be

Two important investigations paved the way for an advance. In 1832
Liebig and Wöhler, studying benzoic acid, found that it and its
derivatives contained in common a group of atoms, not isolable by
itself, to which they gave the name of benzoyl. The conception of such
a group, a compound radicle, already existed, but it lacked clearness,
and now for the first time it became truly a scientific idea. The
search for, and the identification of, compound radicles began to
occupy the attention of chemists, and a definite line of attack upon
organic matter was recognized.

Two years later the second great step was taken. Dumas, studying the
action of chlorine upon acetic acid, showed that the chlorine could
replace hydrogen atom for atom, or volume for volume, and that his
observations explained other reactions which had been unintelligible
hitherto. This research led him to the famous theory of substitutions,
which at first was received with ridicule, but soon found general
acceptance. Electro-chemical conceptions, the Berzelian doctrines, were
then in vogue, and it seemed strange, even absurd, to suppose that
electro-negative chlorine could be substituted for electro-positive
hydrogen. But the facts were stronger than the preconceived ideas, and
the latter soon gave way. In this discovery by Dumas the first germs of
the modern theory of valence are to be found.

For the study of inorganic substances, however, the dualistic theory
was long retained, with the result that inorganic chemistry degenerated
to a great extent into analysis and compound making, without any
general conceptions which could stimulate scientific advance. It
became a science of details rather than of principles, and was soon
overshadowed by the organic branch. In the latter, theory after theory
sprang up, flourished, and died away, each one having partial truth,
but none being exhaustive and final. Still, the intellectual activity
led to discoveries, and the warfare between doctrines, unlike the
warfare between men, was productive of good instead of destruction.
From the conflict of ideas the truth gradually emerged, and a new
system of chemical philosophy was developed. The theory of compound
radicles, the nucleus theory, the theory of types, the conception of
conjugated compounds, followed rapidly one after the other, until in
the discovery of valence all discrepancies were reconciled, structural
chemistry came into existence, and a single doctrine, applicable alike
to organic and inorganic substances, had possession of the field.

The theory of valence was a logical outgrowth from its predecessors,
whose valuable features it included in a wider generalization, but it
was the work of no one master mind. Many chemists contributed to its
up-building, Frankland and Kekulé being among the leaders; but its
foundations are to be detected in the atomic theory itself, from which
it is legitimately derived. To understand its full significance we must
take a step backward in history, and trace the change in atomic weights
from their first form to the modern system.

In the early days of the atomic theory, in the determinations by
Wollaston, Berzelius, and others, attention was chiefly paid to
the atomic weights in their aspect of combining numbers. They were
primarily of use as factors in chemical calculations, and chemists
naturally sought for their simplest expressions, with little regard to
theoretical considerations. The laws of Avogadro, of Dulong and Petit,
had, indeed, been announced, but the adjustment of the atomic weights
to meet their requirements was long neglected. The importance of the
adjustment was not realized, for it was obscured by the prevailing
dualistic theory, but without it the deeper general relations of the
atoms could not appear. Accordingly, a system of chemical formulæ grew
up which was based upon a deceptive apparent simplicity of ratios,
and by which the theory of valence could not be even suggested. The
old formula for water, HO, expressed only its composition by weight,
ignoring its composition by volume; it failed, therefore, to accord
with Avogadro’s law or to give the slightest hint as to the relations
which are now covered by the conception of chemical structure. A part
of the existing knowledge was accurately symbolized, but the larger
part was ignored, a state of affairs which could not last, although the
change came about but slowly.

The incentive to reform came from two sources. Physics, in the
kinetic theory of gases, gave a new demonstration of the truth of
Avogadro’s law, and led chemists to realize more clearly than before
the distinction between atoms and molecules. Soon it was seen that the
molecule was the smallest particle of matter which could exist as such,
while the atom was the smallest particle which could take part in any
chemical change. The metaphysical atom was really the modern molecule;
the chemical atom was a new conception, due to the discoveries of
chemistry alone. This distinction was found to hold good even for
elementary bodies, and it became evident that free hydrogen or oxygen
must contain two atoms to the molecule, while phosphorus and arsenic
contained four. With mercury the atom and the molecule are identical,
but in most cases the greater complexity exists, and the elements as
we see them are compounds of like atoms with each other. That hydrogen
can unite with hydrogen, oxygen with oxygen, carbon with carbon, is a
conception to which the early chemists never attained, but which is a
necessary consequence of Avogadro’s law in its application to observed

The second impulse toward change originated in the study of organic
compounds, and gained its force from the struggle between contending
theories. The advocates of each theory sought for evidence in its
favor, and so innumerable discoveries were made, compound radicles
were recognized in great numbers, and the mass of data became so
overwhelming that for a while chaos reigned. Classification of
compounds became imperatively necessary, and to that all speculation
was subordinated. In 1842 Schiel found that the alcohols formed a
regular series, with progressive variation in their properties; Dumas
observed a similar relation among the fatty acids, and so something
like order began to appear.

In 1843 Charles Gerhardt proposed to use the law of Avogadro as a basis
for the determination of atomic weights. This involved the doubling of
many existing values, especially the atomic weights assigned to oxygen,
carbon, and sulphur. At first the proposition was violently opposed,
and even ridiculed, but by slow degrees it managed to make its way,
although it was not until after 1858 that it began to find anything
like general acceptance. In that year Cannizzaro put forth his revision
of the atomic weights, adjusted to accord with physical laws, and a
new era in chemistry began. The modern theories of chemistry became
possible, and the many researches in which they had been foreshadowed
received a clearer meaning. Cannizzaro did not stand alone; his work
was but the capstone of a structure which had long been growing;
Liebig, Dumas, Laurent, Gerhardt, Wurtz, Graham, Williamson, and
Frankland were among the builders. But at last chemical and physical
evidence were brought into full convergence, and each gave emphasis to
the other.

During the formative period of the new doctrines, between 1840 and
1858, many discoveries were made which helped toward the final
consummation. Even earlier than this the researches of Graham upon
the phosphoric acids had familiarized chemists with the idea that
different substances might have very different combining powers, and
other polybasic acids were found to exist among organic compounds.
The discovery by Wurtz, in 1849, that the hydrogen of ammonia was
replaceable by organic radicles, forming the compound ammonias or
amines, was a logical extension of the theory of substitutions; and
the recognition at about the same time, by Hofmann, of ammonia as a
distinct type upon which many other substances could be modeled, was
another long step forward. In 1851 Williamson argued that nearly all
inorganic and many organic molecules could be represented as analogous
in structure to water, and a year later, as a result of his researches
upon the organo-metallic bodies--zinc ethyl, tin ethyl, etc.--Frankland
expressed the belief that every elementary atom has a definite
combining power which limits the number of other atoms capable of
direct union with it. This was the theory of valence in its first and
simplest form, undeveloped to its consequences, but unmistakably clear.
To carbon compounds in general it was yet to be applied.

In 1858 the work of Cannizzaro appeared, and a general revision of
chemical formulæ became necessary. The advanced views which a few
chemists had held began to find a more general acceptance, and the
significance of the change was gradually realized. In the same year
Kekulé showed that the atom of carbon had a combining capacity of
four, and furthermore that in many organic compounds the carbon atoms
were in part united with each other, and even linked, as it were, into
chains. Still later, studying benzene, he found that its six carbon
atoms were best regarded as joined together in the form of a closed
ring, and with this conception the idea of chemical structure received
at last a definite form. These linkages of atoms, these rings and
their derivatives, could all be represented graphically to the eye,
in accordance with the combining power of the several elements, and
so the structural formulæ of modern chemistry came into vogue. Types,
substitutions, compound radicles, were all covered by and included in
the new generalization, and each of the older theories was seen to be
but an expression of special cases, rather than of any general law. No
truth was set aside, but all were co-ordinated.

To the non-chemical reader the foregoing passages may seem vague
and abstruse, but in an essay of this scope greater elaboration is
inadmissible. It is clear, however, that each forward step has been a
logical development of the atomic theory, which, as we shall see later,
does not end even here.

Thus, then, the chemical formulæ and atomic weights of Berzelius grew
by slow degrees into the modern system, with its representations of
structure and atomic linking. The internal architecture of the molecule
was now revealed not to the imagination only, but to the eye of reason,
and, speculative as the new conceptions may seem at first, they have
led to astonishing practical consequences. The new formulæ at once
indicated lines of research, and with their aid synthetic chemistry
was greatly stimulated. True, many syntheses of organic compounds
had already been made, but progress became more rapid and the work
of discovery was systematized to a wonderful degree. In 1856 Perkin
discovered the first of the coal-tar dyes, creating a new industry
which has been assisted beyond measure by the structural symbols that
came into use only a few years later. In 1868 alizarin, the coloring
principle of madder, was made artificially from the hydrocarbon
anthracene; a host of other colors, a veritable chemical rainbow,
have been discovered; the synthesis of indigo has been effected; and
within twenty years we have seen medicine enriched by a great variety
of drugs, all prepared by purely chemical processes from the former
waste material--coal tar. To most of this work, at least since 1865,
Kekulé’s conception of the benzene ring has been the guiding clew,
and it is certain that without the theory the practice would have
advanced much more slowly. Out of research for its own sake has come
an enrichment of the world, which in any previous age would have been

The atomic theory, while replacing speculation in one sense, stimulated
it in another. The human mind is always striving to get back of the
known, to see what lies beyond the limits of visibility, and the
conception of an element with its atomic weight opened up a field for
the exercise of the imagination. What is an element ultimately? was
an early question to ask. Are the elements really diverse, or do they
manifest but one fundamental kind of matter? To such queries the atomic
weights offered a promising line for investigation, and more than one
mind began traveling along it. In 1815 Prout put forth the supposition
that all atomic weights were even multiples of that assigned to
hydrogen, and over this hypothesis a long warfare has raged. To-day
it is practically abandoned by chemists, but the controversy which it
provoked led to some of the most accurate investigations in the history
of science, and so served to give precision to our knowledge. Without
the instigation of Prout’s hypothesis, which hinted at hydrogen as
the ultimate form of matter, we might have been content with inferior
determinations of atomic weight, and chemistry, as an exact science,
would have suffered.

In due time, however, it was perceived that the elements could
be arranged in groups, the members of each group having similar
properties and forming similar compounds. Serial relations, analogous
to those discovered among organic compounds, became manifest, and
much thought was expended in seeking to trace out their meaning. The
classification of the elements was more and more seen to be important,
and regularities came to light which at first were unsuspected. Still,
no general law, no one guiding principle, could be found so long as the
old system of weights and formulæ was retained in common usage.

The adoption of Cannizzaro’s atomic weights and the establishment of
the theory of valence made possible a new attack upon the problem of
classification. In 1864 Newlands arranged the elements in the order of
their atomic weights, and showed that at regular intervals there was a
periodic recurrence of certain characteristics. This observation, which
foreshadowed the periodic law, was received with indifference and, to
some extent, with ridicule, but the path had been found which soon led
to a great discovery. In 1869 Mendelejeff published his celebrated
memoir, and the periodic law took its place as a distinct addition to
science. Almost simultaneously Lothar Meyer announced similar views,
but independently, and controversy soon arose as to the relative merits
of the two philosophers. With that controversy we have nothing to do,
but the law itself deserves our fuller attention.

According to the periodic law, all the properties of the elements are
periodic functions of their atomic weights, varying from substance
to substance in a perfectly regular manner. The elements thus fall
into periods, or octaves, as Newlands called them, of a very striking
character. If, for example, we start with univalent lithium, the next
higher element has a valence of two, the next of three, and then comes
carbon, whose atom is quadrivalent. Following carbon, the combining
power of successive elements decreases until we reach sodium, in which
something like the properties of lithium recur. Above sodium the same
rise goes on to the fourth element higher, silicon, which resembles
carbon, and then follows the regular step-by-step falling away, to end
with chlorine, the last member of the second period. This periodic
rising and falling is characteristic of all the elements, and they were
so tabulated by Mendelejeff as to be perfectly clear, with a clearness
which is not to be given by words. In Mendelejeff’s table certain gaps
appeared, which he ascribed to the existence of undiscovered metals.
For three of these he predicted the properties, starting out from
the properties of their neighbors. This was a rash thing to do, but
the venture has been fully vindicated. In 1875 Lecoq de Boisbandram
discovered gallium, which filled one of the gaps; scandium and
germanium filled the other two later. The predictions of Mendelejeff
were fulfilled; atomic weight, specific gravity, fusibility, the
character of the compounds to be formed, were all foreseen for each
of the three new elements; and, so far as experiment has yet gone,
his anticipations have been perfectly realized. Every good theory is
prophetic; but few generalizations have been so strikingly verified
in this respect as has the periodic law. In spite of some outstanding
difficulties, yet to be explained, the law has served to great
advantage in the classification of the elements, and it has had much to
do with the late revival of inorganic chemistry. The latter branch of
science, long comparatively neglected, has now gained new interest, and
for it, in the near future, a great growth can be prophesied.

The immediate effect of the periodic law was to prove that the
elements are connected with one another by general relations, and so
to stimulate the belief in their possibly common origin. This view has
many upholders, although it is also strongly opposed, but the weight
of argument seems to be in its favor. On philosophic grounds it is at
least more probable than the opposite opinion, which can not account
in any way for the regularities which have been observed. From another
source, partly physical and partly chemical, the theory of the unity
of matter has received strong support, and this statement brings us
to another of the greatest discoveries made during the nineteenth
century--that of the spectroscope and spectrum analysis.

It was in 1860 that Kirchhoff and Bunsen added this new weapon to
the arsenal of scientific research. The spectroscope itself, as
an instrument, was an invention in the department of optics, but
its applications to chemistry were among the most obvious and the
most startling of its achievements. With its aid new elements were
discovered--rubidium, cæsium, thallium, indium, and gallium; in many
lines of investigation it found immediate use; but, more than all, it
made possible the analysis of the heavenly bodies, and proved that the
same kinds of matter exist throughout the visible universe. Before the
day of the spectroscope all speculation upon the chemistry of the stars
was in vain; with its advent the material unity of planets, suns, and
nebulæ was made clear. To the astronomer, a new eye was given; to the
chemist, a new laboratory. Three sciences were brought to a single
focus, and each one gained in power thereby.

In its application to what may be called chemical astronomy, one
achievement of the spectroscope was particularly notable--namely, the
rehabilitation of the nebular hypothesis. When the gigantic telescope
of Lord Rosse had resolved some nebulæ into clusters of stars, it
was thought that all other nebulæ might be of the same character;
the visible basis of the hypothesis was gone. But the spectroscope
soon found among these celestial objects some which were truly clouds
of incandescent gas, and so the nebular hypothesis received a new
standing, becoming stronger than ever before. One point, however,
was strange: these gaseous clouds were of the simplest composition;
hydrogen and nitrogen were their chief constituents; how, then, could a
world like ours originate from them?

Further investigation, to which Huggins and Secchi were the chief
contributors, showed, however, that from nebula to planet there is
a regular, progressive order of chemical complexity. The nebulæ are
simple; in the hotter stars a few more elements appear; more still can
be detected in colored stars and the sun; but the planets, represented
by our earth, are most complex of all. So far the facts; the scientific
imagination now comes into play. If suns and planets were derived
by a process of condensation from such nebulæ as exist to-day,
perhaps the process of evolution was attended by an evolution of the
chemical elements themselves. Upon that supposition the facts become
intelligible; without it the evidence is not easily co-ordinated. This
hint, together with the suggestions offered by the periodic law, has
made chemists more ready to consider the probable unity of matter,
even though actual proof for or against the conception has not yet
been attained. That the chemical elements are absolute and final few
thinkers of to-day believe; the drift of opinion is mainly in one
direction, but no element has yet been decomposed or transmuted into
another. Some mathematical relations have been found connecting the
atomic weights of certain elements with the wave lengths of their
spectral lines, and this field of investigation is a promising one for
the future. That the atomic weights are connected hardly admits of
doubt; to the mass of the atom its rate of vibration must be related;
to that vibration the lines in the spectrum are due. The clews are
obvious, and it will be strange if they do not lead to important
discoveries ere long.

[_To be concluded._]



Taste is so free and so subjective, so largely a matter of personal
feeling, that any selection or limitation of attractive objects
would be met by plausible objection. Every honest and unprejudiced
investigator must, however, admit nowadays that his individual taste
may be informed and purified, and that he is under obligations to
be ever ready to explain and to justify it. The day for the mere
proclaiming of preference has passed. The proclamation must be
accompanied by explanations which will satisfy others, if they do not
convince them, and which will be clear to one’s own understanding. The
authoritative explanation, “I like this, I dislike that,” will no more
pass current nor carry weight. Science has sufficiently studied the
sentiments and emotions to know that they, too, are subject to laws
which must be acknowledged and obeyed. Excitations for which there is
no reasonable accounting, no justifiable source, must be relegated
to the domain of folly. The reason for everything that appertains to
thought and emotion, if not apparent, must be exposed and presented.
Artists must explain their works to vulgar understanding. Writers must
make their criticisms plain to the humble intellect. The age in which
we live takes nothing for granted, accepts no man’s _ipse dixit_, hates
shams, is intolerant of secrecy, hypocrisy, and fraud.

I propose in this article, by contrasting good and bad examples, to put
before readers a few of the simplest elements of decoration. You can
hardly fail to note the differences, and when once the eye has acquired
the habit of discriminating there is no reason why there should not
follow a growth in perception which will result in delightful and
augmenting artistic enjoyment. No attempt is to be made to develop a
system, nor, of course, to cover the whole ground of the subject. The
object is simply to start perceptions in the right direction.

Almost all the ideas and the illustrations of this article are taken
from a little work by Henri Mayeux, called _La Composition Décorative_.
Henri Mayeux is Professor of Decorative Art in the École des Beaux-Arts
in Paris. His work is one of the series of the _Bibliothèque de
l’Enseignement des Beaux-Arts_, a series which should be among the very
first works to be found in the library of every student of art.

[Illustration: FIG. 1.]

The very first of Mayeux’s illustrations (Fig. 1) introduces the style
of the teaching of the volume and of this article. Let me translate
his accompanying description: “Here are two recipients of the same
height, made of the same material, and with about equal care. Each has
two handles and is decorated by the same number of fillets. The one
marked _A_ is the work of an ordinary potter, without artistic instinct
or education. The other, _B_, is a Greek vase of fine and delicate
taste. No one can fail to appreciate the superiority of _B_ to _A_. The
purity of its profile, the graceful manner in which the handles are
attached, the calculated division of the fillets, establish at once a
considerable difference of artistic value between the two objects.” If
Mayeux were addressing beginners he might add that one reason why all
jugs and vases are round is that the shape is the easiest to make. The
potter’s wheel must have been one of the very earliest inventions of
semi-civilized races. Besides, as a drop of water is globular, it seems
appropriate that liquids should be contained in round receptacles. A
square jug would not only seem inappropriate, but it would be ugly
and perhaps difficult to handle. Notice in _B_ how much better the
different parts are distinguished: the neck from the body of the
vessel, and the body of the vessel from the foot. Two fillets are also
very appropriately put where the vessel is largest, and where they seem
to convey a sense of increased strength exactly where the pressure is
greatest. You will find all the way through the study of ornament that
utility, or use, is a fundamental principle which can not be violated
without impairing beauty.

Before presenting objects for comparison it may be well to pass in
review the elements which compose all objects. Decoration is the
application of ornament to form. It therefore presupposes knowledge
of both form and ornament, for form must be understood by itself, and
ornament by itself, before the proper ornament may be selected for the
given form. The elements of form are length, breadth, and thickness. A
mathematical point is conceived to have no dimensions, a mathematical
line but one, and a mathematical plane but two. But in actuality there
is no tangible object without the third dimension--thickness. Still,
where two dimensions are very much more prominent than the third--as,
for instance, in a plaque, in the side of a room, in a single
elevation of a building, or whenever merely the surface of an object
is viewed--the third dimension may be left out of consideration. Lines
and the surfaces they bound--that is, length and breadth--are the two
elements of form which play the chief part in decoration.

[Illustration: FIG. 2.]

[Illustration: FIG. 3.]

If the two vases which are represented in the view by vertical and
horizontal, straight and curved lines, were actually before us you
would have difficulty in finding any vertical lines, and the horizontal
lines would turn out to be circles. The lines in the view mark the
apparent terminations of the surfaces. For purposes of study, however,
you must regard objects of three dimensions as bounded by lines, just
as they appear in photographs, drawings, or other flat representations,
geometric or perspective. In regarding objects from the point of view
of decoration there is still another element to be considered; that is,
the element of material, the substance of which objects consist, for it
is evident that the ornament which would be appropriate to wood, for
instance, might not be appropriate to metal or to stone. The element of
material is of great importance in practical decoration, but of less
importance in theoretical decoration. Lines and surfaces are therefore
the two chief elements of decoration to be considered at present.
Color, being an element of an entirely independent nature, will not be
considered at all.

First, lines. The lines down one side of an object may be called the
profile of the object, while the lines surrounding the object may be
called the contour or outline of the object.

[Illustration: FIG. 4.]

Profiles and outlines are made up of any number of straight and curved
lines connected at any and every variety of angle. The view (Fig. 2)
shows a few possibilities of combination of lines into profiles. The
particular thing to be observed in these profiles is that individual
curves are preceded or followed by curves which curve in the same
direction or in the opposite direction--that is, regarding the curves
as concave or convex from a given side of the profile, sometimes a
concave curve meets a concave curve, sometimes it meets a convex curve.
In these particular profiles the straight lines which unite the curves
are so small and so insignificant that they appear as mere connections.
Where the adjoining curves are homogeneous the connection is called
continuous--_raccords continus_, as Mayeux puts it. When the adjoining
curves are different, the connection is called contrasted--_raccords
contrastés_. In the view all continuous connections are marked _a_; all
contrasted connections are marked _b_. Now follow these lines up and
down slowly and deliberately--not once or twice, but a number of times.
See exactly where the connections occur, and where the connections
are continuous, and where they are contrasted. In these profiles are
shown forth and made evident two of the most important and general laws
not only of ornament, but of all artistic composition: First, that
connected curves of the same kind must run substantially in the same
direction; and, second, that for purposes of strong contrast curves of
different kinds must be joined--that is to say, that where contrasted
connection is desired, the difference in direction must be abruptly
and sharply indicated. In the profiles in the view the various curves
have been continued in dotted lines beyond the profiles, so as to bring
out and make clear these two laws. You see that wherever there is a
_b._ the dotted lines cross at, or nearly at, right angles, and that
wherever there is an _a._ there is no crossing at all of the dotted
lines. The essence of these two laws is of such importance in all
artistic and decorative composition that beginners might well be put
to drawing profiles until the principles involved have been absorbed
and made a part of artistic apprehension. The profiles in the view are
all pleasing, because the laws are observed. Try your hand at drawing
profiles in which the laws are not observed, and you will quickly
perceive the difference. The most beautiful of pure profiles are those
presented by Greek entablatures. The most beautiful of Greek outlines
are those presented by Greek vases. The beauties of Greek sculpture and
of renaissance design belong so strictly to the domain of pure art that
they may not be used for comparison in an article on ornament.

[Illustration: FIG. 5.]

[Illustration: FIG. 6.]

As outlines are composed of profiles, the same laws govern. That
the curved line is the line of beauty stands out most evidently in
the study of antique designs. Vertical lines and horizontal lines
are the lines of support and strength, and must always have proper
consideration; but in pure ornament the office of straight lines seems
to be confined to connecting curves and to emphasizing their contrasts.

[Illustration: FIG. 7.]

The next view (Fig. 3) is to illustrate the progress already made.
On the upper line are the three rough outline sketches for modern
articles, of which the final use and destination are shown on the lower
line. In the sketch to the left the fine effect is produced by a few
curves, of which the connections are boldly and finely contrasted. In
the second sketch an equally pleasing effect is produced by curves, of
which the principal ones are continuously connected, while in the third
sketch there is a pleasing exhibition of both kinds of connections.
The lower line gives you your first notion of the use of ornament in
marking and embellishing the lines of form.

[Illustration: _Contours bátards et indécis_ FIG. 8.]

The next view (Fig. 4) exposes forms in which the above laws are
violated, and by whose ugliness you can not fail to be impressed. On
the top line are objects of which the curves are so weak and undecided
that it would be difficult to state whether the connections are
continuous or contrasted. In the second line is shown how ugly is the
effect when straight lines are substituted for curved lines, and in the
third line is shown how ugly effects may be produced even by curved
lines when not used in obedience to some accepted and apprehended

[Illustration: FIG. 9.]

There is another presentation of form which is in reality but a
modification of profile, but which, because it looks as if it had
been separately applied, and also because it is separately treated
in books, must be considered by itself. The term “molding” has been
given to variations in surfaces which have both useful and ornamental
uses. Moldings are as old as architecture, and vary with schools of

[Illustration: FIG. 10.]

In the next view (Fig. 5), taken from Mayeux’s work, are given the most
ordinary Greek moldings with their French names. However necessary it
must be for the architect, and however admirable it may be for the art
student, to know the names of all moldings by heart and to be able
to describe each one accurately, such proficiency is not required at
present and is not necessary for the understanding of the present
theme. Some moldings have square edges, some round. The curved edges
of some are simple, of others complex. Each has its name, and of some
the name is descriptive. The term molding would seem to indicate that
moldings were made apart and subsequently applied to the main object.
Whatever be the origin of moldings, the same rules apply to them which
apply to other profiles, with the additional rule that moldings must
always be kept subordinate to the principal object. For instance, in
the view (Fig. 6) the pedestal marked _bon_ is good, because the body
of the pedestal is the principal object and it is clearly seen that
the moldings at the base and at the top are subordinate and merely
ornamental, while the pedestal marked _mauvais_ is decidedly bad,
because more vertical space is given to the moldings than to the shaft,
confusing outline, weakening the shaft, and destroying the sense of
strong and steady support.

Readers may at once make use of the information already acquired by
seeing how these rules apply to their own lamps, candlesticks, pieces
of furniture, etc.

The next view (Fig. 7) shows incidentally how much better it is under
all circumstances to mark with fillets and lines the changes from one
curve to another, for you certainly see how much more substantial
character and beauty has _B_ than _A_.

[Illustration: FIG. 11.]

Finally, let it be said, and said emphatically, that though there
are profiles which require the use of the compass to draw them, and
though all architectural details must be worked out with mathematical
accuracy, those profiles and outlines are the most beautiful where it
is evident that artistic skill governing a free hand has controlled and
where mechanical assistance is so subordinate as to be overlooked.

There is very little to be said about surfaces or forms of two
dimensions. The principal requirement is that outlines should be
agreeable and must be well defined. In fact, the two qualities are
inseparable, for a well-defined outline is agreeable and a badly
defined one is sure to be disagreeable. By well-defined is meant
that its particular shape should easily appear and be clearly
distinguishable. For instance, a square should appear with sides
distinctly equal; a circle should have but one center. In an
architectural opening either arch or entablature should prevail, and
the character of the arch should be evident. In the examples presented
(Fig. 8) in the view these principles are violated. The first figure
is so clearly a square that at first, and before you have examined
it closely, you think it is a square. It leaves an indefinite and
consequently disagreeable impression. The same criticism applies to
the second object, apparently a mirror. The glass is round, but the
frame is so irregular that the impress of the circle is destroyed, and
there is left an undecided and therefore uncomfortable sensation. In
the third example the arch is so poorly defined and so weak, while the
entablature above it is so strong and so prominent, that the result
is a composition that fails to give pleasure, because no distinct
idea is conveyed. In the last example the outlines of the arch are so
indefinite that its character is indistinguishable. You can not see
which prevails, the round arch or the pointed arch.

[Illustration: FIG. 12.]

The same principles apply to smaller objects and to details, as seen
in the next view (Fig. 9). To the left the date plate on top is bad
in comparison with the one beneath it, because its direction is not
so well marked and its corner projections are too large. In the
lambrequins on the right, those are good in which the general direction
is properly marked, and in which subdivisions are kept properly
subordinated. Lambrequins have so entirely gone out of use nowadays
that it is difficult to recall the time when they were regarded as
indispensable parts of furniture.

There is one other point to which your attention should be called--that
is, stability. If an object be intended to stand, its center of
gravity should be so well within its base that there will be no danger
of its being upset by the ordinary uses to which it is exposed. Pots
and pans, pitchers, lamps, and candlesticks, of general and daily
household use, should have bases so broad and weight so low that the
accidental bump of the inexperienced “help” will not be inevitably

When utensils are made more for show than for use, as those in Fig.
10, and are to occupy places of comparative security, beauty more than
utility may be considered in the proportions of their supports. Where
utility has disappeared altogether and the suggested outline of a vase,
for instance, is used for purely ornamental purpose, supports may be
done away with altogether, as appears in these drawings of Italian
tapestries of the seventeenth century (Fig. 11).

The stability of pendant objects must also be considered. It is
evident that the perpendicular line of suspension must be the line of
equilibrium, and that these two must correspond with the design (Fig.
12). Whether any objects should under any circumstances be exposed to
the real and apparent danger of falling is a question. We have got so
into the habit of hanging pictures, engravings, and other works of art
in our houses, and of seeing them hung in galleries, that we have lost
sight of the incongruity of the custom. Pictures should be impaneled,
and be permanent parts of the walls on which they appear. But, then,
how could they be moved when owners tire of them, or tire of their
houses, or how could they be gathered together in museums for purposes
of study and public enjoyment? Picture frames are of comparatively
modern invention. The idea of buying a picture for the purpose of
selling it again was not entertained before the fifteenth century.
Pictures were as substantial parts of churches and houses as were
shrines and fireplaces.

Having very cursively reviewed the elements of form, we are in a
position to understand decoration, which is simply the application to
form of ornament.

       *       *       *       *       *

    The highest authenticated points at which flowering plants have
    heretofore been found growing upon the Andes are at about 17,000
    feet, although the Kew Herbarium contains several specimens labeled
    as having been found at altitudes of from 17,000 to 18,000 feet.
    Sir Martin Conway has brought back from his recent explorations in
    the Bolivian mountains at least half a dozen species from 18,000
    feet and upward, the highest being from about 18,500 feet. They
    include a saxifrage, a mallow, a valerian, and several _Compositæ_.
    _Compositæ_ likewise attain the upper limit of phanerogamous
    vegetation in Thibet, where, in latitudes from 30° to 34°, one was
    found by Dr. Thorold at 19,000 feet.



    [F] Abstract of the Presidential Address to the Institution of
        Junior Engineers, November 3, 1899.

All heat engines at present in use take in heat from a source at a
high temperature and discharge most of it at a lower temperature, the
disappearance of heat in the process being the equivalent of the work
done by the engine. In all cases at the present time the source of heat
is from fuel of some kind, and after working the engine the residue
is discharged in the case of the steam engine either to the condenser
or in the exhaust steam when non-condensing. In the gas engine it is
discharged in the waste gases and into the water jacket around the

The earliest records of heat engines are found in the Pneumatics of
Hero of Alexandria, about 200 B. C. He describes a reaction steam
turbine, a spherical vessel mounted on axes supplied with steam through
one of the trunnions from a boiler beneath; the steam escaping through
two nozzles diametrically opposite to each other and tangential to the
sphere, causing the sphere to rotate by the reaction or momentum of the
issuing steam, and analogous to a Barker’s water wheel.

Thus, the first engine deriving its motive power from fuel was a
crude form of steam turbine, and though it could have been applied to
useful work, and could easily have been made sufficiently economical
to replace manual and horse power in many instances, yet it lay
dormant till 1629 A. D., when Bianca suggested the same principle in
a different form. Bianca’s steam turbine consisted simply of a steam
jet fed from a boiler impinging against vanes or paddles attached to
the rim of a wheel which was blown round by the momentum of the steam
issuing from the jet.

The piston engine is, however, of comparatively modern origin, and
dates from about the year 1700 A. D. Engines of this class are so well
known that it suffices to say that they have been practically the sole
motive-power engines from fuel in use from 1700 up to 1845, and have
constituted one of the most important factors in the development of
modern engineering enterprise.

Air engines were introduced about the year 1845, and although the
larger engines of the Stirling type were very economical in fuel, yet,
on account of the inherent difficulty of heating large volumes of air
within metal chambers or pipes--a difficulty arising from the low
conductibility of air and consequently the overheating and burning
of the metal--they have only come into commercial use for very small

the blades and guide vanes is more clearly shown in Fig. 2. The steam
enters at _J_ and exhausts after leaving the low-pressure cylinder _C_.]

During the last thirty-five years gas engines have been perfected, and
more recently oil engines, and in point of efficiency both convert
a somewhat larger percentage of the heat energy of the fuel into
mechanical energy than the best steam engines. All successful oil and
gas engines are at present internal-combustion engines, the fuel being
burned in a gaseous form inside the working cylinder.

Very numerous attempts have, however, been made to construct
internal-combustion engines to burn solid fuel instead of gas. Some
have been so far successful as to work with good economy in fuel,
but the bar to their commercial success has been the cutting of the
cylinder and valves by fine particles of fuel. This difficulty is not
present when the fuel is introduced in the gaseous or liquid form, and
hence the success of gas and oil engines; but could this difficulty be
overcome, the solid fuel would be the cheaper to use.

Internal-combustion engines, gas engines, oil engines, cannon, etc.,
owe their superior economy in fuel to the very high temperature at
which the heat is transferred from the fuel to the working substance
of the engine, and consequently the great range of temperature in the
working substance of the engine. In steam engines the temperature is
limited by the practical difficulties of deterioration of metal and
materials involved in the construction.

About fifteen years ago I was led by circumstances to investigate
the subject of improving the steam turbine. In recent times several
attempts had been made to apply steam turbine wheels of the Hero and
Bianca types to the driving of circular saws and fans. The velocity
of rotation with either of these types must necessarily be very high
in order to obtain a reasonable efficiency from the steam, a velocity
much in excess of that suitable for the direct driving of almost all
classes of machinery; gearing was considered objectionable, and it
therefore appeared desirable to adopt some form of turbine in which the
steam should be gradually expanded in small steps or drops in pressure
so as to keep the velocity of flow sufficiently low to allow of a
comparatively moderate speed of rotation of the turbine engine.

The method adopted was to gather a number of turbines of the parallel
flow type on to one shaft and contained in one case, the turbines
each consisting of a ring of guide and a ring of moving blades, the
successive rings of blades or turbines being graduated in size, those
nearer the exhaust end being larger than those near the steam inlet, so
as to allow a gradual expansion of the steam during its passage through
the turbines.

The form of the turbine was that of a rotating drum, with outwardly
projecting rings of blades which nearly touched the containing
cylindrical case, and on the case inwardly projecting rings of guide
blades which nearly touched the drum. In the first examples of the
engine there were two groups of turbines right-and left-handed on each
side of the steam inlet, the exhaust taking place at each end of the
turbine case, so as to completely balance end pressure from the steam.
More recently one series of turbines only has been used, those on
the other side of the steam inlet being replaced by packing rings or
rotating balance pistons which balance the end pressure and divert the
whole of the steam through the turbines on the other side.

VANES IN A PARSONS’S TURBINE. The top outer cover has been removed.
The cylinder containing the revolving barrel has, as will be seen, a
greater internal diameter than the diameter of the drum. It is the
annular space thus formed through which the steam flows and which
contains the revolving blades and the fixed guide blades. Between each
two rings of moving blades there is a ring of guide blades, the latter
being keyed into the containing case. The vanes are set at an angle, so
that the steam acts on them as wind on the sails of a windmill.]

The steam entering the annular space between the shaft and the case
passes firstly through a ring of guide blades attached to the case,
and is given a rotational direction of flow; it then passes to the
succeeding ring of blades attached to the shaft, by which its direction
of rotation is reversed, thereby impressing the difference of its
rotational momentum in torque to the shaft. The steam then passes to
the second ring of guide blades, and the process is repeated, and so
on, gradually expanding by small increments at each ring of blades; the
succeeding rings of blades get longer and wider, and at intervals the
diameter of the turbine drums, cylinders, and rings are also increased.
In condensing turbine engines of the larger size an expansion ratio in
the turbines of one hundredfold and upward is attained before the steam
passes to the exhaust pipe and condenser.

The loss of power present in engines of the piston class, due to
cylinder condensation arising from the variation of steam pressure
in the cylinder, is not present in the steam turbine, as the steam
pressure remains constant at each turbine ring and each part of the
cylinder and barrel, and the numerous tests of steam consumption that
have been made have shown that compound steam turbine engines of
moderate sizes when working with a condenser are comparable in steam
consumption per effective horse power with the best compound or triple
condensing steam engines of the piston type. They have been constructed
in sizes up to about one thousand horse power for driving alternators
and dynamos, and several sets of about two thousand horse power are
nearing completion.

The application of the compound steam turbine to the propulsion of
vessels is a subject of considerable general interest, in view of the
possible and probable general adoption of this class of engine in fast

In the turbine is found an engine of extremely light weight, with a
perfectly uniform turning moment, and very economical in steam in
proportion to the power developed, and, further, it can be perfectly
balanced so that no perceptible vibration is imparted to the ship. The
problem of proportioning the engine to the screw propellers and to the
ship to be driven has been the subject of costly experiments extending
over several years, with the result that a satisfactory solution has
been found, giving very economical results in regard to pounds of
steam consumed in the engines per effective horse power developed in
propelling the vessel, results which are equal or superior to those so
far obtained with triple-expansion engines of ordinary type in torpedo
boats or torpedo-boat destroyers. The arrangement adopted may be best
described by saying that instead of placing, as usual, one engine to
drive one screw shaft, the turbine engine is divided into two, three,
or sometimes more separate turbines, each driving a separate screw
shaft, the steam passing successively through these turbines; thus
when there are three turbines driving three shafts, the steam from the
boiler passes through the high-pressure turbine, thence through the
intermediate, and lastly through the low, and thence to the condenser.

CONNECTED TO A DYNAMO. The turbine engine is on the right.]

As to the propellers, these approach closely to the usual form. It has,
however, been found best to place two propellers of approximately the
same pitch on each shaft at some considerable distance apart, so that
the after one shall not be seriously affected by the wash of the one
in front. The advantage of this arrangement is that a sufficient blade
area is obtained to carry the thrust necessary to drive the vessel with
a lesser diameter of propeller, and so permitting of a higher speed of
revolution of the engines.

The problem was complicated by the question of cavitation, which,
though previously anticipated, was first practically found to exist
by Mr. Thornycroft and Mr. Barnaby in 1894, and by them it was
experimentally determined that cavitation, or the hollowing out of the
water into vacuous spaces and vortices by the blades of the propeller,
commences to take place when the mean thrust pressure on the projected
area of the blades exceeds eleven pounds and a quarter per square
inch. This limit has since been corroborated during the trials of the

This phenomenon has also been further investigated in the case of
model propellers working in an oval tank of water, and to permit of
cavitation at more moderate speeds than would otherwise have been
necessary, the following arrangement was adopted: The tank was closed,
plate-glass windows being provided on each side, through which the
propeller could be observed, and the atmospheric pressure was removed
from the surface of the water by an air pump; under this condition the
only forces tending to prevent cavitation were the small head of water
above the propeller, and capillary attraction.

In the case of a propeller of two inches in diameter, cavitation
commenced at about twelve hundred revolutions, and became very
pronounced at fifteen hundred. Had the atmospheric pressure not been
removed, speeds of twelve thousand and fifteen thousand respectively
would have been necessary.

Photographs were taken with a camera made for the purpose, with a focal
plane shutter giving an exposure of about one thousandth of a second,
the illumination being by sunlight concentrated on the propeller from a
twenty-four-inch concave mirror.

Photographs were also taken by intermittent illumination of the
propeller from an arc lamp, the arrangement consisting of an ordinary
lantern condenser, which projected the beam on to a small concave
mirror, mounted on a prolongation of the propeller shaft, the reflected
beam being caught by a small stationary concave mirror at a definite
position in each revolution and reflected on to the propeller. By this
means the propeller was illuminated in a definite position at each
revolution, and to the eye it appeared as stationary. The cavities
about the blades could also be clearly seen and traced, the photographs
being taken with an ordinary camera and about ten seconds’ exposure.

A series of experiments was also made with model propellers in water
at and just below the boiling point, dynamometric measurements being
taken of power and thrust with various widths of propeller blade, the
conclusion arrived at being that wide and thin blades are essential for
fast speeds at sea, as well as a coarse pitch ratio of propeller.

The first vessel fitted with steam turbine machinery was the Turbinia.
She was commenced in 1894, and, after many alterations and preliminary
trials, was satisfactorily completed in the spring of 1897. Her
principal features are: Length, one hundred feet; beam, nine feet;
five-foot draught of water under the propellers; forty-four tons and
a half displacement on trial; she is fitted with a water-tube boiler
of eleven hundred feet total heating surface, and forty-two square
feet of grate area, with closed stoke-holds supplied with air from a
centrifugal fan mounted on a prolongation of the low-pressure turbine
shaft. The engines consist of three compound steam turbines, high
pressure, intermediate, and low pressure, each driving one screw shaft;
on each of the shafts are three propellers, making nine in all; the
condenser is of the usual type, and has four thousand square feet of

When officially tested by Professor Ewing, F. R. S., assisted by
Professor Dunkerley, she attained a mean speed on a measured mile of
thirty-two knots and three quarters, and the consumption of steam
for all purposes was computed to be fourteen pounds and a half per
indicated horse power of the main engines. Subsequently, after some
small alterations to the steam pipe, she was further pressed, and is
estimated to have reached the speed of thirty-four knots and a half.
She was, and still is, therefore, the fastest vessel afloat; she has
been out in very rough weather, is an excellent sea boat, and at all
speeds there is an almost complete absence of vibration.

In the Turbinia the exceptional speed results principally from two
causes: 1. The engines, screws, and shafting are exceptionally light.
2. The economy of steam in the main engines is greater than usual.

At full speed the steam pressure in the boiler is two hundred and ten
pounds; at the engines, one hundred and seventy-five; and the vacuum in
the condenser twenty-seven inches, representing an expansion ratio in
the turbines of about one hundred and ten after allowance has been made
for wire-drawing in the exhaust pipe.

The first vessels of larger size than the Turbinia to be fitted with
steam turbine machinery are the torpedo-boat destroyer Viper for
the British Government, and a similar vessel for Messrs. Sir W. G.
Armstrong, Whitworth & Company.


These vessels are of approximately the same dimensions as the
thirty-knot destroyers now in her Majesty’s service, but have slightly
more displacement. The boilers are about twelve per cent larger,
and it is estimated that upward of ten thousand horse power will be
realized under the usual conditions, as against sixty-five hundred with
reciprocating engines.

The engines of these vessels are in duplicate. Two screw shafts are
placed on each side of the vessel, driven respectively by a high- and
a low-pressure turbine; to each of the low-pressure turbine shafts
a small reversing turbine is permanently coupled for going astern,
the estimated speed astern being fifteen knots and a half, and ahead
thirty-five knots; two propellers are placed on each shaft.[G]

    [G] On her second trial trip the Viper attained a mean speed of
        34.8 knots, her fastest trial being over 35 knots, or about
        41 statute miles per hour, with an indicated horse power of
        11,000. This vessel is of about 350 tons displacement.

The latter of these two vessels has commenced her preliminary trials,
and has already reached a speed of thirty-two knots. The manipulation
of the engines is a comparatively simple matter, as to reverse it is
only necessary to close one valve and open another, and, owing to there
being no dead centers, small graduations of speed can be easily made.

In regard to the general application of turbine machinery to large
ships, the conditions appear to be more favorable in the case of the
faster class of vessels such as cross-Channel boats, faster passenger
vessels, cruisers, and liners; in such vessels the reduction in weight
of machinery, as well as economy in the consumption of coal per horse
power, are important factors in the case, and in some vessels the
absence of vibration, both as regards the comfort of passengers, and in
the case of ships of war permitting greater accuracy in sighting of the
guns, is a question of first importance.

As regards cross-Channel boats, the turbine system presents advantages
in speed, absence of vibration, and, owing to the smaller diameter of
the propellers, reduced draught.

As an instance, a boat of two hundred and seventy feet length,
thirty-three feet beam, one thousand tons displacement, and eight
feet six inches draught of water could be constructed with spacious
accommodation for six hundred passengers, and with machinery developing
eighteen thousand horse power; she will have a sea speed of about
thirty knots, as compared with the speed of nineteen to twenty-two
knots of the present vessels of similar size and accommodation.

It is, perhaps, interesting to examine the possibilities of speed
that might be attained in a special unarmored cruiser, a magnified
torpedo-boat destroyer of light build, with scanty accommodation
for her large crew, but equipped with an armament of light guns and
torpedoes. Let us assume that her dimensions are about double those of
the thirty-knot destroyers, with plates of double the thickness and
specially strengthened to correspond with the increased size--length,
four hundred and twenty feet; beam, forty-two feet; maximum draught,
fourteen feet; displacement, twenty-eight hundred tons; indicated
horse power, eighty thousand; there would be two tiers of water-tube
boilers; these, with the engine space, coal bunkers, etc., would occupy
the whole of the lower portion of the vessel; the crew’s quarters and
guns would be on the upper decks. There would be eight propellers of
nine feet in diameter revolving at about four hundred revolutions per
minute, and her speed would be about forty-four knots.

She could carry coal at this speed for about eight hours, but she would
be able to steam at from ten to fourteen knots with a small section
of the boilers more economically than other vessels of ordinary type
and power, and, when required, all the boilers could be used, and full
power exerted in about half an hour.

In the case of an Atlantic liner or a cruiser of large size, turbine
engines would appear to present some considerable advantages. In the
first place they would effect a reduction in weight of machinery and
some increase in economy of fuel per horse power developed, both thus
tending either to a saving in coal on the one hand, or, if preferred,
some increase in speed.

The advantages are, however, less pronounced in this class of vessel on
account of the smaller relative power of the machinery and the large
quantity of coal necessary for long voyages, but the complete absence
of vibration at all speeds, not to mention many minor considerations
of saving in cost and reduced engine-room staff, are questions of
considerable importance.




In the seventeenth year of her age Miss Diana Vaughan joined the
Freemasons, entering the lodge (“triangle”) of “The Eleven Seven,” at
Louisville, and passing rapidly through the different grades until
the “Elect Palladistic Knighthood” was conferred upon her after she
had given satisfactory proofs of her Luciferian orthodoxy. One thing
she refused to do--namely, to stab the host with a dagger--since
this act implied a recognition of the sacramental character of the
Eucharist. She maintained that there would be no sense in piercing the
consecrated wafer unless it was believed to be the real body of Christ;
but as she rejected the doctrine of transubstantiation as a childish
superstition, she was unwilling to make a fool of herself by assaulting
a piece of ordinary bread with a show of wrath. She would not hesitate
to commit sacrilege, but did object to being silly. This scruple, or
rather this lively sense of the ridiculous, rendered her unpopular with
the Freemasons, inasmuch as it marred the performance of their most
important and impressive Satanic ceremony, and thus gave her rival,
Sophia Walder, an advantage, which she was quick to improve.

We need not follow the career of Sophia Walder, known to the infernals
as Sophia Sapho. She is said to have been born in Strasburg, September
29, 1863, as the supposititious daughter of a Protestant parson,
Philias Walder, and a Rosicrucian dame, Ida Jacobsen, with whom the
clergyman lived after having murdered his wife in Copenhagen. Her
real father, however, was the devil Bitru, who declared her to be
the predestined great-grandmother of antichrist. In 1896, while in
Jerusalem, she gave birth to a daughter, the grandmother of antichrist;
this child was also of demoniac paternity. Owing to her uncompromising
Luciferianism, she was a favorite of the Freemasons, and excited the
jealousy of Diana Vaughan, who tells with zest of the practical jokes
played on her. Thus, at a banquet of the Freemasons, somebody put a few
drops of Lourdes water in her glass of lemonade, which caused terrible
pain and threw her into spasms, from which she finally found relief by
vomiting fire. This incident is cited by a Catholic writer, Dr. Michael
Germanus,[H] in his Secrets of Hell (_Geheimnisse der Hölle_), as
conclusive proof that “Sophia was possessed.”

    [H] Michael Germanus (a Latinization of “_Der deutsche
        Michel_,” the personification of the German nation,
        analogous to the English “John Bull” and the American
        “Brother Jonathan”) is the pseudonym of a priest, Parson
        Künzle, of Feldkirch, in the Tyrolese Voralberg.


Bitru’s proclamation of Sophia Sapho as the prospective
great-grandmother of the incarnate antichrist is given in full. It
was dictated in Latin by Bitru at a meeting of Freemasons in Italy,
and written down by Luigi Revello, and bears the devil’s signature,
composed of Satanic signs and symbols, darts, sword, cords, lightning,
bugle-horn, trident, and crowing cock.

This climax of absurdity ought to have served to expose the trickery
and trumpery of the whole affair, but it produced the very opposite
effect. Dr. Germanus refers to “Bitru’s sign-manual as highly
interesting,” and characterizes “the documentary evidence as thoroughly
convincing”; those who refuse to recognize the truth in the face of
such positive proof he accuses of imitating the ostrich and willfully
shutting their eyes to the light.[I]

    [I] A photographic reproduction of this document is given in
        Diana Vaughan’s biography of the Italian statesman Crispi,
        which contains numerous illustrations and portraits of
        Crispi, Mazzini, Lemmi, Garibaldi, Giordano Bruno, and
        other “Palladists,” or Masonic worshipers of Satan. The
        original French title of the book is “Le 33ᵉ ⁂ Crispi. Un
        Palladiste Homme d’État démasqué. Biographie documentée du
        Héros depuis sa Naissance jusqu’ à sa deuxième Mort. Par
        Miss Diana Vaughan.”

The salvation of Diana Vaughan is described as due to her intense
admiration for Joan of Arc, a feeling which was ardently fostered by
the priests with whom she chanced to come in contact. One day, as she
was attended by Asmodeus, Astaroth, Beelzebub, and Moloch, incarnate in
“the counterfeit presentment” of fine gentlemen, she obeyed a sudden
and irresistible impulse to invoke the Maid of Orleans, when these
devils were immediately stripped of their disguise, and stood before
her in their true character as imps of hell, with hoofs and horns, and
emitted an intolerable stench. No sooner did they perceive that they
were unmasked than they vanished with a fearful howl. This miracle
made a deep impression upon her, and led to her conversion. She took
refuge in a Parisian cloister, and, after severe penance and proper
instruction, was received into the bosom of the Catholic Church. During
this period of penitential seclusion she wrote her Memoirs, which
produced an immense sensation in clerical circles, and were pronounced
by a high ecclesiastical dignitary to be “worth more than their weight
in gold.”

It must be confessed that in weaving this tissue of fabrications Taxil
showed consummate skill as a romancer and a profound knowledge of the
possibilities of human credulity. He made a happy hit in calling the
heroine of his Stygian story Diana, since in the annals of witchcraft
the pagan goddess of the chase is wont to frequent the nocturnal
assemblies of demons, and in mediæval theology the phrase “_congressus
Sabathi cum Diana_” was a common expression for intercourse with
Satan. Another masterly stroke was to represent her deliverance from
the snares of evil spirits and the hallucinations of Luciferianism
as a miracle of grace wrought through the mediation of Joan of Arc,
thus furnishing an argument in favor of the canonization of the Maid
of Orleans, which the cleverest _advocatus diaboli_ would be unable
to answer. At this time Taxil prepared also a Catholic prayer book
entitled _Eucharistic Novena_, published under the name of Diana
Vaughan, and containing forms of supplication against unbelief,
worldly indifference and lukewarmness, hardness of heart, blasphemy,
and unchastity. The covert sarcasm which pervades the entire manual
of devotion comes out most clearly in the section on the violation of
the seventh commandment. A copy of the work, which had been approved
by the Archbishop of Genoa, was sent to Cardinal Parocchi, with a
letter signed “Your Eminence’s most devoted servant in Jesus, Mary, and
Joseph, Diana Vaughan,” and five hundred francs, of which two hundred
and fifty were to be used for organizing an international antimasonic
congress, and the rest to be given as Peter’s pence to the Pope. The
cardinal replied with great cordiality to his “dear daughter in our
Lord,” called her conversion “one of the most glorious triumphs of
grace,” and added, “I am reading at this very moment your Memoirs with
burning interest.” He gave her his blessing, and conveyed “the thanks
and special benediction of his Holiness.” Numerous letters of a like
character were received from the Vatican. On May 27, 1896, the General
Secretary of the Apostolic See, Verzichi, wrote that “his Holiness
had read her _Eucharistic Novena_ with extreme pleasure”; two months
later the Pope’s private secretary, Vincenzo Sardi, thanked her in the
name of Leo XIII for her exposure of Crispi, and bade her “continue to
write and to unmask the godless sect,” and the _Civiltà Cattolica_,
the official organ of the papacy, praised her “inexhaustibleness in
precious revelations, which are unparalleled for their accuracy and
usefulness. Freemasonry is confounded, and seeks to evade the blows
of the valiant championess by denying her existence, and treating her
as a myth. It is a pitiable shift, but Freemasonry can find no better
refuge.” “Your pen and your piety,” wrote Monsignore Villard, October
15, 1896, “are predestined to demolish the foes of mankind. The good
works of the saints have always met with opposition, and it is no
wonder, therefore, that yours should be combated.”

Naturally, there was intense curiosity to see this new convert and
powerful defender of the faith. This inquisitiveness was easily allayed
at first by the plea that the cloister to which she had retired must
be kept secret, in order that she might be safe from assassination
by the Freemasons. Meanwhile the medium of correspondence was a
bright American girl, employed as copyist in a Parisian typewriting
establishment, who wrote all the letters at Taxil’s dictation, and
received a monthly salary of one hundred and fifty francs for her
services. After a time he deemed it politic to introduce her privately
to select circles of Catholics, who were thereby enabled to testify
to her existence, since they had seen and conversed with her. The
following incident may be mentioned to illustrate the adroitness with
which she played her part: M. Pierre Lautier states that he once
breakfasted with her, and offered to pour a little Chartreuse into
her coffee, but she refused it with a singular sign of aversion, and
took a few drops of old cognac instead. As an ex-Luciferian, she
instinctively shrank from a drink made in a cloister, or what she
called “an Adonaïc liquor.” That she should have thought of such a
feint on the spur of the moment indicates that she had not only made a
thorough study of her rôle, but also had been endowed by Nature with
genuine theatrical talent. A full account of the solemn sham, published
in the _Revue Mensuelle_, served to strengthen the faith of waverers in
the reality of Diana Vaughan, and furnished an admirable opportunity
for discoursing on the difficulty of throwing off Satanic influences;
for here was a young lady who, although she had received absolution
and thus become a child of grace, could not forget the terrible effect
of a few drops of Lourdes water on one of her former demonolatrous
associates, and recoiled with horror from a glass of Chartreuse. Taxil
and his confederates confess that they often “doubled up with laughter”
over the success of their imposture, and indulged in jokes about it in
their writings. Thus Dr. Bataille, in the first volume of The Devil in
the Nineteenth Century, remarks, as a peculiarity of Diana Vaughan,
that she “is very fond of wearing male attire,” but no allusions of
this kind, however pointed, seemed to have excited any suspicion of
guile in minds predisposed to credulity by Nature and by education.

Taxil’s long series of mystifications, extending over a dozen years,
culminated in the convocation of an antimasonic congress at Trent, on
September 26, 1896, to the president of which Leo XIII addressed an
apostolical brief with his benediction, and expressed the hope that
the assembled representatives of the Church would not rest until the
“detestable sect” had been unmasked and the evil utterly eradicated.
A “central executive committee,” consisting of a score of Italian
papists, issued a circular summoning all Catholics to join “the new
crusade,” and declaring that the Vatican had now raised a war-cry
against Freemasonry, “the den of Satan,” as it did eight centuries
ago against Islam. Taxil was received with ovations, and did not
hesitate to poke fun at the venerable prelates to their very faces.
With an assumption of modesty he reproved them for what might be
misplaced enthusiasm. “One can never be sure,” he said, “of a converted
Freemason, but must always fear lest he may return to his former
friends. Not until the convert is dead can one be wholly free from
this anxiety. I am well aware that this general principle applies
also to myself.” But even this daring dash of irony, hardly hidden
under the gauzy disguise of self-distrust, did not cool the ardor
of his admirers, who continued to greet the harlequin with “_Evviva
Taxil_!” His photograph hung among the pictures of the saints, and
the mere mention of his name called forth loud applause, whereupon
the prince of mountebanks rose and bowed. A few Germans had the good
sense and courage to protest against these demonstrations, and to
doubt the existence of Diana Vaughan and the sincerity of Taxil,
whose sole object, as Dr. Gratzfeld asserted, was to “lay a snare for
Catholics and anti-Freemasons, and scoff at them when they are caught
in it.” This skepticism created intense excitement, and was severely
rebuked by an Italian priest and a Parisian prebendary, who averred
that they knew Diana Vaughan personally, and could vouch for her
saintliness. A French monk used such violent language in his reply to
Dr. Gratzfeld that the presiding officer, although indorsing his views,
felt constrained to call him to order. “Any doubt of Diana Vaughan’s
existence or of the genuineness of her revelations,” exclaimed the Abbé
de Bessonies, “is a sin against the antimasonic cause!” The Spanish
delegates introduced a resolution demanding that all Freemasons should
be legally incapacitated to hold any civil office or military command;
the resolution was adopted, with the amendment that “wherever it may be
feasible” such laws should be enacted and executed. The manner in which
Taxil met the allegations of his opponents is highly characteristic.
“A priest of the Holy Sacrament, Father Delaporte, had often declared
that he would gladly give his life for the conversion of Diana Vaughan.
She attended mass in the cloister for the first time on Corpus Christi,
and left her sacred retreat on the following Saturday. On the very day
of her departure Father Delaporte died. And yet there are persons who
doubt the existence of Miss Vaughan!” The burst of applause elicited
by this irrefragable argument proved his accurate appreciation of
the logical powers of his auditors, whose minds had been fed on the
nutriment which may be wholesome as “milk for babes,” but, when
persistently administered to adults, converts them into intellectual

Although the congress was attended by many of the chief dignitaries
of the papal hierarchy, and the Romish Patriarch of Constantinople
sat there in state with a golden crown on his head, Taxil was its
ruling spirit. On his motion, it was resolved to establish antimasonic
associations in every land under the auspices of the bishops and the
direction of national committees, and a commission was appointed to
investigate the Diana Vaughan affair. A few months later, on January
22, 1897, this commission made an indecisive and utterly nugatory
report, to the effect that “no thoroughly convincing evidence had been
furnished for or against the existence and conversion of Diana Vaughan
and the authenticity of the writings attributed to her.” This evasion
of the issue, however, did not shake the confidence of the ultramontane
press, nor prevent its positive affirmation of the points which the
commission had discreetly left in doubt. As a reward for this fanatical
zeal and steadfast credulity, the editor of The Pelican received a
special apostolical benediction, and was thus encouraged to “resist the
raging of Satan.” “Stand firm!” he exclaimed. “The Holy Father is with
us, and who is over him?”

With the Congress of Trent the mystification which Taxil had been
playing off on papacy for so many years had reached the acme of
success, and nothing now remained but to wind up the plot with a
drastic _denouement_. Accordingly, Diana Vaughan issued an invitation
to a conference to be held on April 19, 1897, in the great hall of
the Geographical Society of Paris. It was also stated that other
conferences would be held in the principal cities of France, Italy,
England, and the United States. The programme for the evening was quite
elaborate, beginning with a lottery for an American typewriter and
ending with a series of fifty-four stereopticon pictures representing,
among other fantastic scenes, Sophia Walder and her serpents, events in
the life of Diana Vaughan, the apparition of the devil Bitru in Rome,
Eden and Eve with the fatal apple, sacrilegious stabbing of the host
on a Satanic altar in a Masonic lodge at Berlin, and finally Leo XIII
with the encyclical letter _Humanum genus_ as a flaming sword in his
hand, the archangel Michael on his right and the apocalyptic St. John
on his left treading the triple-headed dragon of Freemasonry under
foot. The audience consisted chiefly of priests, with a few Protestant
clergymen and Freemasons, and an unusually large number of newspaper
reporters. The typewriter was won by Ali Kemal, correspondent of the
Constantinople journal _Ikdam_, who only regretted that it did not
write Turkish. Taxil then appeared on the platform, and began his
address with the words: “Reverend sirs, ladies, and gentlemen! You
wish to see Diana Vaughan. Look at me! I myself am that lady!” After
this startling exordium, he proceeded to relate how from his youth
up he had always had an irresistible inclination to play practical
jokes. Once he frightened the inhabitants of Marseilles by discovering
a shoal of sharks in the harbor, and again he set the archæologists
all agog by announcing the existence of a city, built on piles, at the
bottom of Lake Leman. But these were “childish things” compared with
the manner in which he had humbugged the Catholic clergy for nearly a
dozen years. We need not report the details of his discourse; it is
sufficient to say that he gave a full account of the deep-laid plot
from its first conception to its final consummation at the Congress of
Trent. Each new disclosure called forth cries of “Liar!” “Scoundrel!”
“Vilifier!” “Villain!” and similar epithets, but nothing could disturb
the cynical composure of the speaker. As a precautionary measure, all
persons had been required to give up their canes and umbrellas at the
entrance, otherwise the angry words would have been emphasized by
blows. The shameless impostor coolly referred to the numerous presents
received, among which was an Emmenthaler cheese, sent by the Marquis
de Morès, with pious sayings carved in the rind. “It was an excellent
cheese,” he added, “and served to strengthen me in my fight against
Freemasonry.” The money remitted to Diana Vaughan in ten years amounted
to more than half a million francs, and flowed into the pockets of
Taxil and his confederates. He expressed his thanks to the clergy for
their aid in carrying out his scheme, and attributed their co-operation
chiefly to ignorance and imbecility, but partly also to dishonesty,
declaring that among the many dupes there were not a few knaves. As
he left the hall he was threatened with violence, and took refuge
in a neighboring _café_, under the protection of the police. No one
thought any longer of the pictures which were to form such a novel and
attractive feature of the entertainment; indeed, this forgetfulness
constituted an important although unprinted part of the programme in
the minds of those who arranged it.

How difficult it is for constitutionally credulous persons, in whom
this disposition has been nurtured by education, to take a rational
view of things when a strong appeal is made to their prejudices, is
evident from a statement published in the _Osservatore Cattolico_ of
Milan, in May, 1897, that Leo Taxil was held in durance vile by the
Freemasons, one of whom personated him on the occasion just described.
Another Catholic writer asserted that Diana Vaughan did not appear at
the conference because Taxil had been bribed by the Freemasons to have
her shut up in a lunatic asylum.

The history of Taxil’s imposture has been circumstantially narrated
in a book entitled _Leo XIII und der Satanskult_, by Dr. J. Ricks
(Berlin: Hermann Walther, 1897, pp. xiv-301; price, three marks).
The author, a doctor of divinity and pastor of a Lutheran church at
Olvenstadt, near Magdeburg, has collected his materials from authentic
sources and treated the whole subject with remarkable thoroughness and
impartiality. His work is a valuable contribution to the voluminous
annals of religious superstition and credulity.

The ease with which Taxil succeeded in duping so many prominent
representatives of the papal hierarchy naturally disturbed the
equanimity of the most intelligent Catholics, especially in Germany,
and caused them to sound a note of alarm. How is it possible, they
asked themselves, for a large body of educated men, claiming to be
the spiritual guides of the people, to become the victims of so plump
an imposition? Is it not due to radical defects in the development
and discipline of the intellectual faculties? Nearly a century ago
Madame de Staël remarked that “since the Reformation the Protestant
universities stand unquestionably higher than the Catholic, and the
whole literary fame of Germany emanates from these institutions”;
and this opinion has been quoted and indorsed by the unimpeachable
authority of an eminent Catholic theologian, the late Professor
Döllinger.[J] Recently another Catholic, Dr. Hermann Schell, Professor
of Apologetics in the University of Würzburg, has called attention to
the latest statistics of religious denominations in Germany, showing
the inferiority of Catholics, as indicated by their comparative lack
of interest in higher education and the smaller percentage of them in
the learned professions.[K] In this connection he refers to Taxil’s
successful exposure of the intellectual deficiencies, which render
the hierophants of Roman Catholicism incapable of resisting the most
palpable delusions of superstition. His two “tracts for the times,”
as they might fitly be termed, _Der Katholicismus als Princip des
Fortschritts_ and _Die neue Zeit und der alte Glaube_, maintain that
Catholicism should be progressive, and that the old faith can remain
a living force in each new era only by adapting itself to every real
advance of mankind in knowledge and thus becoming reanimated by the
spirit of the age. Professor Schell expresses his sympathy with the
movement in favor of greater freedom of thought and independence of
research, known as “Americanism” in the Catholic Church, and regards
its extension to the Old World as a vital necessity.[L]

    [J] _Cf._ Ignaz von Döllinger. Sein Leben auf Grund seines
        schriftlichen Nachlasses dargestellt von J. Friedrich.
        München: Beck, 1899, vol. i, p. 77.

    [K] In confirmation of this statement we may cite the
        statistical tables of Dr. Von Mayr for 1896, giving the
        number in every ten thousand of the different denominations
        attending the gymnasia or classical schools, the scientific
        schools with Latin, and the scientific schools without

        Protestants    27.7    13.2    12.5
        Catholics      21.4     3.8     6.7
        Dissidents     17.7    13.2    18.7
        Jews          173.7    65.8    92.7

        The Catholic students in the gymnasia are mostly candidates
        for the priesthood. “Dissidents” are members of free
        religious associations. A noteworthy feature is the large
        proportion of Jews, and curiously enough this laudable
        characteristic is made by anti-Semitic agitators a ground
        of crimination and used to prejudice the public mind. Not
        long since a demagogue of that ilk in Berlin charged the
        Jews with putting forth every effort for the education
        of their sons, in order that they might more effectually
        compete with Christians; “therefore down with the Jews!”

    [L] Since these lines were written Professor Schell has been
        disciplined and threatened with excommunication by the
        See of Rome. We regret to be obliged to add that he did
        not have the courage to maintain his opinions, but made a
        public recantation of them. The cause of progress in the
        Catholic Church has now found a new and apparently more
        fearless advocate in a Bavarian priest, Dr. Müller, of
        Munich, whose pamphlet on Reformkatholizismus can hardly
        escape the interdict of the papal hierarchy.

It is creditable to the Catholic prelates in the United States that
they were not among the foolish birds caught with the lime laid by Leo
Taxil. Indeed, the Bishop of Charleston went to Rome for the express
purpose of warning Leo XIII against this trickster, but was sharply
reprehended and admonished to be silent. A similar rebuke was given to
the Apostolic Vicar of Gibraltar for denying the existence there of
Tubal-Cain’s subterranean laboratory for manufacturing microbes.

The _Breviarium Romanum_, the daily use of which, as a manual of
devotion and edification, is enjoined by the Pope on the clergy, is
full of legends which are recorded as historical facts, and quite equal
in absurdity to Taxil’s most extravagant and fantastic inventions. The
tales there told of the miracles wrought by saints, their communion
with angels, and their combats with devils may have easily suggested
many incidents narrated in The Devil in the Nineteenth Century and
the Memoirs of Diana Vaughan. It is no wonder that minds accustomed
to accept the marvels of hagiology as actual events should be readily
deceived by a clever caricature of them, especially when appealing to a
prejudice so absurd and yet so strong as that entertained by the papacy
against Freemasonry. It would seem from many indications that the
Romish Church, as an ecclesiastical organization, bears about the same
relation to contemporary culture that Roman paganism did to the best
thought of the period when Lucian wrote his sprightly dialogues and
Lucretius his genial and comprehensive didactic poem _De Rerum Natura_.
Is it doomed to the same fate, or has it, as Professor Schell and Dr.
Müller assert, a saving, recuperative power?

       *       *       *       *       *

    Of the geological age of the building stones used in the United
    States, George P. Merrill observes, in his report to the Maryland
    Geological Survey, that few stones are used to any extent that are
    of later date than the Triassic, and few, if any, of our marbles
    are younger than the Silurian, while nearly all our granites, as
    now quarried, belong at least to Palæozoic or Archæan times. Stones
    of later age than Triassic are, so far as relates to the eastern
    United States, so friable or so poor in color as to have little




Much in this world is neither upon first nor last analysis true to
name. From the corner grocery we buy a pound of starch in a rectangular
package highly decorated with lithograph and lettering, setting
forth the excellences of the product, “superior to all others,” and
manufactured, with the utmost care, by Messrs. So-and-So. The fact is
that the big seven-story establishment did not make a grain of the
starch, and the best that can be claimed is a satisfactory method
of bringing the product already formed into the present acceptable

But it is not the purpose of this paper to decry the refineries,
whether they be of starch, sugar, or this or that of a hundred natural
products, but to direct attention to the source of that very common
and, it may be safely said, indispensable substance known to the
English-speaking people as starch.


It will be no new surprise to state, by way of introduction to the
subject, that starch is the ordinary everyday product of ordinary
everyday plants. So humble a vegetable as the potato has gained its way
into all lands of the more civilized peoples almost solely because it
has a habit of storing away, in large underground stems, a vast amount
of starch. Let this provident tendency disappear in this plant for a
single season, and the crop growers would discard it from their list of
remunerative plants, while millions of people would turn with dismay to
some other source of a daily supply of starch. What this change in the
nature of a single kind of plant would mean to the human race words can
not describe. If the famine in Ireland of 1845 and some later years,
induced by a rot in the potato, is any index, the misery would be
something worse than we should care to even dream of. When there is a
shortage of starch in India, a distress follows that is felt through
the bonds of sympathy, if in no other way, the whole world round. Let
rice fail to mature its grain, which means, in short, not to store its
starch in available form for man, and the dependent race is brought
to the ghostly condition of starvation and thrown upon the charity
of those people whose starch is in their grain elevators, sacks, and
barrels almost without number.

[Illustration: FIG. 2.--STARCH GRANULES OF CORN.]

Starch, it would seem from this, is the prime food element of the
human family, the chief factor in the upbuilding of a race, because a
fundamental aliment of our bodies.

If the starch factories do not make, in the true sense, the product of
their mills, it may be to the point to consider how this all-important
substance comes into existence. The organic chemist tells us that
starch is a ternary compound, and this agrees closely with the
definition laid down by the dictionaries, only they add that it is
odorless, tasteless, and insoluble in water. It is one of the proximate
principles of plants, and is stored in the form of granules wonderfully
variable in size and shape, but each kind having a type that is adhered
to with much regularity. For example, the ordinary potato (_Solanum
tuberosum_ L.) produces a starch granule that is characterized by
a form resembling the shell of the oyster. Fig. 1 is from a camera
drawing of a cell from the center of a potato, with portions of
adjoining cells, all of which were packed full of starch, a few grains
only being represented.

Starch is acted upon differently by reagents, one of the leading tests
for it being a solution of iodine. A drop of a very weak solution will
determine the presence of starch in a cuff or shirt front by leaving
a blue spot or streak where the iodine has been applied. By means of
this reagent the student of plant tissues is readily able to locate
starch when present in any slice of tissue he may have made. He would,
for example, find much more starch in the tuber of the potato than in
any other portion of the plant, and there the grains will be found many
times larger than in the stem or the cells of the green leaves. Of the
relation of the starch in the leaves to that in the underground stem
something may be said later in this paper.

In the corn plant the starch is stored chiefly in the grain, and not in
the subterranean portions, as in the potato. The granules of the corn
starch are much smaller than those of the potato, as indicated by Fig.
2, which is from a camera drawing of a cell from a grain of corn and
made to the same scale as Fig. 1. The granules are oval and not much
marked with striæ or lines, but chemically the substance is the same in
both cases.

Another leading starch is that of wheat, the form of the grains of
which is shown in Fig. 3. While somewhat larger than the corn-starch
granules, they are not otherwise widely different.

[Illustration: FIG. 3.--STARCH GRANULES OF WHEAT.]

[Illustration: FIG. 4.--STARCH GRANULES OF RICE.]

One could scarcely overlook the starch produced by the rice plant, for
it feeds more people than the potato, corn, or wheat. The relative size
and form of the rice-starch granules are shown in Fig. 4. It is seen
that the grains are not large, and with a strong tendency to break up
into small angular pieces.

There are almost as many forms of starch as plants producing it,
some of them being very odd in shape. Thus the tapioca starch has a
characteristic form, as also the sago; but it is not the purpose here
to more than call attention to the form in which the substance under
consideration is laid down in plants. The student of food adulterations
is an expert in the detection of starches, and, with his microscope and
skill, is able to decide how much of one kind of starch and how much of
another is offered in the product under examination. It is a matter of
congratulation that Nature has set herself so strongly against fraud
in food stuffs as to record the origin of each grain of starch in the
grain itself.

And that brings us to a consideration of that origin. We must accord
to plants the exalted prerogative of being the exclusive and universal
starch-formers in the world. Whether we note the growth of the potato
tubers or the plumping out of the grains of corn, wheat, or rice, the
same fact remains that storehouses are being filled with the same
organic compound. There must be many preliminary steps before this
process of storing is complete, and for these we need to seek elsewhere
in the growing plant.

Even the most careless observer can not but be at home with the fact
that the whole port and bearing of ordinary plants is for sun exposure.
They rise from the ground as closely placed stems of grass or less
neighborly orchard or forest trees, and hang out their leaves to catch
the sun. The economy of substance is so well studied that there is a
very large exposure at a minimum of expenditure of tissue. In short,
the leaves are the organs for association with the sunlight. They
reach toward the sun where light is scanty, as in the window, and even
turn their faces to the orb of day, shifting the position hour by hour
from sunrise to nightfall. The rapidity with which we come to the
fundamental fact that leaves are for the sun almost surprises one. The
purpose is as easily inferred, but the steps in the process are not so
quickly taken. The facts that leaves are _par excellence_ the starch
factories and the sunlight the inobtrusive chemist are granted, and it
remains only to show something of the steps of proof that science may
have discovered.

We need, therefore, to consider starch from the standpoint of its
composition, and upon this the chemists are fairly well agreed. It
consists of three elements, with their atoms so arranged that the
molecule of starch has the composition of six parts of carbon, ten
of hydrogen, and five of oxygen, or, to express the formula in terse
chemical terms, it stands C₆H₁₀O₅. If we can account for the bringing
of these atoms together in the production of a single molecule of
starch the laboratory has been explored and the secret is ours, even if
we can not put it to practical use in our so-called “starch factories.”

The independent plant, beyond serious question, gets its food from
outside itself. There are two sources for these substances--namely, the
soil-water bathing the absorbing roots, and the atmosphere, with which
the aërial branches and their leaves are constantly surrounded. From
the soil come the water and all the salts, ash constituents, and the
like that may be dissolved therein, while the gases of the atmosphere
bring, among its chief contributions, a constant and, in an always
exceedingly diluted form, the carbon dioxide, or, sometimes called,
the carbonic-acid gas. This compound, familiar to us as a product of
combustion, fermentation, and decay, is composed of carbon and oxygen,
and has the symbol CO₂ associated with it by chemists.

In short, for the formation of our starch the water (H₂O) from the
soil and the CO₂ of the atmosphere, when brought together, may be made
to combine with the formation of starch. A single diagram, while not
perhaps an absolute statement of fact, may serve to represent the final

  {     = C₆H₁₀O₅ + 12O.

In other words, the six molecules of carbon dioxide and five of water
combine with the formation of one molecule of starch and the liberation
of twelve atoms of oxygen.


This driving off of such a large amount of oxygen, entirely against the
whole tendency of that element, it is assumed, is at the expenditure
of much force. The only one adequate to this work is solar energy, and
this is abundantly at hand. That we need not seek further for this
power is proved by many and conclusive tests. Vegetable physiologists
to-day are able not only to locate the sun as the chemist, that
effects the changes necessary for the production of starch, but can
show in what cells and portions of those cells the forces effect
the synthesis. The chlorophyll granules in the living cell are the
microscopic laboratories in which a silent chemist, powerful beyond all
measurements, builds out of inorganic materials the food substance of
the whole world of animals and plants.


Fig. 5 is an attempt to present the above statements as to
photo-synthesis in plants in such a form that it may appeal to the eye
of the reader. A bit of maple twig is shown with one leaf in position.
Passing up the stem in the young wood is the crude sap from the soil
to the leaf. There is a downward flow of elaborated sap in the inner
bark also represented. Solar energy is indicated by the wave lines as
playing upon the upper side of the leaf, while the direction of the
carbon dioxide is shown by the dotted lines entering from both above
and below the leaf. Water of transportation is indicated as being
given off, and upon a dry, hot day this is considerable, which, as it
vaporizes in the tissue, tends to keep the latter cool. Lastly, with
the formation of starch there is the escape of oxygen set free from the
broken molecule of carbon dioxide or water or both in the formation of
the starch.

Fig. 6 is a similar attempt to show the process of starch formation
with the use of a portion of the leaf in section as it might appear
under the microscope. The under portion of the leaf is seen as having
openings in the skin, through which the gases and vapors pass, and the
middle portion above shows the porous nature of that part that is most
active in synthesis. The small oval bodies in all the cells, except
those of the upper and under epidermis, represent the chlorophyll
granules, the special seat of the special activities which result in
the formation of the carbohydrate, familiar to all as starch. To the
right is a leaf vein, through which the crude sap (_c. s._) reaches the
synthetic cells, and the elaborated sap (_e. s._) descends to places
where it is needed for growth or for storage.

With the above facts in mind, there is no wonder at the activity that
may reside in a field of corn during a bright day in August. Starch is
being made almost by the ton daily, and, if the conditions favor, the
next month will find a rich harvest for the husbandman who has assisted
in supplying the conditions for the desired output of the leading

The genuine starch factories of the world are exceedingly small and
equally numerous, and, with the sunlight as the active force, each
green cell may contribute to the world’s gain in the food substances
that enable all creatures to live and move and enjoy a fairly
comfortable existence.



The remarkable longevity of a large number of business houses in China
is not due solely to the general conditions of society or to those
which are peculiar to the commercial class, but their stability and
their fame rest upon a special organization, under which they are
united in groups. It is customary for all the houses possessing the
same specialty to form an association which I shall call a corporation,
reserving to myself the privilege of pointing out a few exceptions to
the rule. These corporations, which seem to date from at least three
centuries back, are difficult subjects to study. Various in type,
formed by the individuals interested, without the state having had
anything to do with their regulations or even perhaps authorized them,
they exist by force of custom and live conformably to their traditions,
while some, I have been told, have written regulations and even,
perhaps, archives--which they have not thought fit to communicate to
the public. What is to be learned of them has, therefore, to be deduced
from their visible transactions.

The corporation fixes the minimum price of articles of sale, and has
secret agents to watch that no house takes less, thereby setting bounds
to competition and preventing the injurious depreciation of goods.
Only the public suffers from the existence of the minimum, but it does
not seem to perceive it, and the Government never interferes except in
respect to the price of grain, for which it fixes a maximum, and in
times of great stress sells from its own granaries. The corporation,
too, as represented in the banks and loan offices, fixes the rates of
interest to be paid or received, and the kinds of securities and moneys
that shall be accepted. In short, it adjusts the general regulations
of business transactions, and defends the common interests of all
those associated in it. If one of them is implicated in a judicial
proceeding of general interest the corporation sustains him with
its credit and its funds. It further takes in hand injuries to the
interests of its associates. In 1883 the tea merchants’ corporation of
Hankow suspecting frauds by the agents of certain foreign houses, asked
those houses to designate themselves some foreigner to superintend
the weighings. Notwithstanding the good reputation of the corporation
and the moderation of its requests, the foreign houses refused. All
transactions were suspended, and the official in authority declared
that he could not compel the merchants to sell contrary to their wish,
and the foreign houses were eventually obliged to yield, one at a time.

The corporations likewise watch the transactions of their members,
oppose fraud which might harm the good name of the association so far
that the silversmiths will not permit one of their number to sell
alloyed jewelry, even when the purchaser knows it is such. Some see
that the taxes and duties on production are regularly and properly
paid. Others, in the interest of the stability of the houses, forbid
all fictitious sales and purchases, and most of the stock operations
and a large number of commercial transactions which seem very
simple to us would not be tolerated by them. The custom of selling
short having been introduced upon the silver exchange in Peking a
few years ago, a censor reported it as a kind of gambling, and the
Government interdicted the operation--a very rare example of official
intervention. Under a similar old-fashioned view, the corporation of
bankers inquires into the total amount of the notes issued by its
members. Every banker and every broker is free to issue notes, and
little attention is paid to the precautions required by the law. But
the corporation has an infallible means of restricting extravagance in
the emission of bills. If a house is going so fast as to be in danger
of compromising its credit and perhaps endangering the capital of
others associated with it, an order is given, all the notes are thrown
before the public, and the imprudent bank has to suspend its payments
and retire.

The corporation further maintains its reputation and keeps on good
terms with public powers by expenditures on ceremonials and charities.
Every year it appropriates a sum for the opening of the kitchens from
which rice and millet broths are distributed to the poor of Peking.
In case of famine or inundation, the quotas of the corporations do
not have to be waited for, while the more prominent commercial men
also contribute largely under their own names. They will subscribe
for a testimonial to a mandarin who has done good service, will help
prepare the road over which an imperial procession is to pass, and will
contribute to the pageantry of popular religious ceremonials.

Each corporation has its patron divinity, who is the object of a
special cult. With one it is the god of riches; with another Koan Yu,
god of war; with others a spirit of more limited competency, like
Lou Pan, a famous mechanician of the time of Confucius, now patron of
the carpenters. Adored in every shop by all the patrons and clerks,
the festivals of the protecting genius are celebrated by the whole
corporation at fixed dates. To some divinities a sacrifice of meats and
incense is offered in each warehouse, after which all the chiefs and
the men employed take part, while the spirit is supposed to be present.
To others, more rarely, a more bountiful sacrifice is made in a temple,
and the banquet, held in a large hall, is enlivened by dramatic
entertainments. The patron is also duly honored in the celebration of
the general feasts of the Chinese people.

The corporations have tribunals of arbitration and a common treasury,
but the method of operation of those departments is among the things
they do not reveal to the public. I have only learned a few general
facts on the subject. The corporations intervene, I have been told,
in the disputes of the members and to prevent dishonest dealings and
attempts to cheat one another, but I have not learned that they have
any real judiciary authority. Their treasury is sustained by means of
assessments and fines, and loans may be contracted on its account, for
the salt merchants of Tientsin are still paying interest on a number of
debts contracted by the corporation in the last century.

Great differences might be expected to exist between the corporations
in respect to these points and many others. They have been constituted
at different epochs, independently of one another, and are similar only
in their essential features. The minimum price fixed by the assembly
is not equally imperative in all. Thus, the price fixed by the fur
merchants at the beginning of the winter does not bind the members.
In most branches of commerce all the houses composing the corporation
are on a footing of substantial equality, though, of course, the large
banks prevail over the small brokers, but there is no unlikeness in
the business or the situation. The policy of the tea trade is mainly
controlled in Peking by the houses of the families Fang and Oou. They
fix the price, determine the equivalence of weight (the standard is a
pound of four ounces instead of sixteen), and lead the corporation.
In fact, the retail dealers use their capital in the decoration of
their shops with gilding and sculpture, at a cost of between sixteen
hundred and two thousand dollars, while the goods are lent them by
one of the importers, who holds the decoration as security, so that
the whole corporation is in the hands of these two families. This is
a special condition, and there is nothing else like it, even among
other importers of southern products. While most branches of trade
are independent of official action, slaughter houses, of which there
are only five in Peking, have to be authorized by the Government.
A religious motive may be at the bottom of this restriction, the
large cattle being reserved for the imperial sacrifices. Moreover,
the killing of animals has been interdicted at different times, and
even now the slaughter houses are ordered closed, as an act of public
penitence, in times of drought.

The loan houses also need an official authorization. They pay a tax
on their operations to the local authorities, and are divided into
three classes, according to the importance of their business. Those
of the first class receive deposits from the authorities of various
sums, on which they pay interest, the administration reasoning that
by helping them increase their capital and enlarge their business it
will be doing a philanthropic work and assisting the people. These loan
offices are not at all like our pawnbrokers’ shops, but are a credit
institution, to which the middle class as well as the poor Chinaman has
constant recourse. Being conducted on equitable terms and serving their
convenience in various ways, they render great services to the Chinese
people, and have become necessary to their life, and this explains the
departure of the Government from its usual policy of non-interference
to supervise and favor them. China has, further, large and small
capitalists, and numerous credit establishments very much like ours.
They may be classified as exchange offices, banks, and banks of
discount. The last are at Peking, where they were founded a few decades
ago by some men from Chan-Si. Their single industry is trading notes in
all China and some of its dependencies. They have no monopoly, for some
of the larger banks and more important traders were all doing the same;
but they have regulated the business, extended it to more places, and
have almost entirely suppressed the transportation of money in bulk.

The banks of exchange perform a variety of functions on a restricted
scale, charging two per cent for exchanges, issuing notes without any
supervision, and lending money at two per cent a month in normal times.
They are not, however, always able to pay their notes at sight, and
it is well, therefore, not to keep them too long. In the provinces a
bank usually accepts only its own notes. In Peking some well-known
signatures are accepted everywhere after examination by an expert, who
places his seal on the note he declares good, charges a fee for each
verification, and is responsible for his mistakes.

The large banks, by accepting or refusing the notes of any house or by
throwing money or _sapiques_ on the market, rule in the corporation
and have the whole fate of the market in their hands. The four Hengs,
by the amount of their reserve, the solidity of their credit, and
the number of their branches or correspondents, have no rivals in
north China. All exchange operations are carried on in the money
market, which is held every day in the south-eastern part of the
city, on the street, near the Tauist Temple, where all the houses in
Peking are represented, and every one takes care to be so, lest he
be thought in default. When the rate is fixed the news is dispatched
by couriers, pigeons, etc., to all whom it concerns. The couriers of
the corporation, who communicate with the brokers and bankers, are
also the confidential agents of the syndics, are acquainted with the
amounts of the emissions of each house, know whether a certain patron
is really ill or only feigning, and by their reports decide who shall
be boycotted or declared insolvent. All this goes on in full liberty,
without surveillance by the state, without any tax on the transactions,
and without any other interference than the prohibition of fictitious
dealings. The corn market is in the same way the almost exclusive
domain of the corn corporation, the state never interfering except in
the case of a famine in the region.

Besides the merchants’ corporations, there exist also corporations of
artisans. The embroiderers, the makers of _cloisonné_, the tanners,
and the carpenters have theirs. The carriers and the boatmen, who,
before the opening of the railway, had the monopoly of transportation
between Peking and the provinces without forming associations, met
at their respective inns and established rules and rates for their
business. Informal organizations, varying among the different towns in
their degrees of development, exist among the barbers--who at Peking
meet every year for a sacrifice and a banquet--the chair-bearers,
and the _jinrikisha_ men, and so every city has its corporations and
associations which are not like those of the next city.

Some branches of trade have no corporations, and the peasants, when
they come to town to sell their produce, trade on their own account,
for the best terms they can get, and have to accept, in the market,
an organization the origin of which is forgotten. Every year, on the
appearance of each sort of crop, the _King ki_ of the market, having
agreed with the dealers, fixes the minimum price of the commodity for
the season. He also polices the market. The function of _King ki_ is
the property of the person who exercises it, who has bought it from his
predecessor and will sell it to his successor by private contract, and
nobody contests his right. In the market for _azaroles_ the position
is hereditary. The monopoly of the corporations is often complicated
with a provincial question. The Chinaman regards every man who was born
in another district as a foreigner--still more if he is of another
province. Those who are of the same local origin, on the other hand,
stand by one another. Hence it has come to pass that some trades have
been monopolized by the people of some one province. Most of the
bankers were originally from Chan-Si; all the great merchants came
from Anhoei. The people of Chan-tung have three special occupations in
Peking. They have the exclusive privilege of killing pigs and retailing
meat. They are the only water carriers, each one having his well on
the public highway, his watering place for horses and mules, and his
district where he sells water without permitting the people to provide
for themselves elsewhere. Such privileges are consecrated by usage and
zealously defended by their holders, and respect for them is enforced,
when necessary, by the authorities. Associations are formed, also, even
among the coolies who work on the docks.

These details show by how great a variety of forms all the corporations
assure the same result--the organization of labor. We see also how they
extend beyond commerce. The Chinaman is in fact a social being bound
closely to his fellows--of the family, province, trade, or class--by
every tie and in every sphere of life. He is never a man living by
himself and for himself, and is not accustomed to independence. Hence
the authority of the corporation, instead of seeming strange, is a
necessity to him. Consequently the corporation has the right, by
universal consent, to exact obedience from its members, and to compel
those who would stay out to come into it.--_Translated for the Popular
Science Monthly from the Revue des Deux Mondes._

       *       *       *       *       *

    M. L. Azoulay suggests, in the _Revue Scientifique_, that the
    invitation given to Señor Rámon y Cajal, the celebrated Spanish
    neurologist, to visit the United States and attend the celebration
    of the tenth anniversary of Clark University, furnishes a good
    example for France to follow. “It causes grievous chagrin to
    me to think,” he says, “that while Germany, England, Austria,
    Switzerland, and the United States are regularly accustomed
    to invite to their scientific ceremonials, of which there are
    more than one every year, students of other countries who have
    illustrated any branch of human knowledge, France, formerly so
    hospitable, refuses these international appeals.”

       *       *       *       *       *

    At the recent meeting of the British Archæological Association,
    at Buxton, Dr. Brushfield described the prehistoric circle of
    Arbor Low as, upon evidence which he cited, the earliest neolithic
    monument in Britain. There are thirty-two stones in the circle, all
    now lying prostrate, but they must originally have been erect. The
    dolmen in the center is now level with the ground. The mound and
    ditch--the latter being inside, between the mound and the stone
    circle--are in a very perfect condition, notwithstanding the lapse
    of time. The work has two openings--on the northeast and southwest.

Editor’s Table.


After many uncomfortable turnings in his narrow theological quarters,
the eminent biologist, Professor St. George Mivart, seems to have made
up his mind that he may as well, before he dies, know what it is to
enjoy the air of liberty. For many years he has been pining for this,
and almost inviting the authorities of the Church to give him his
passports. The Church was not anxious, however, to quarrel with a man
of recognized ability and wide knowledge, and therefore writings which
might well have been expected to give serious umbrage were allowed to
pass unnoticed. The professor then made a most audacious raid upon
the venerable doctrine that there remains for the majority of mankind
a place of unutterable and eternal misery. He ventured to speak of
The Happiness in Hell, maintaining that, while the inhabitants of
that abode would always have a profound and harrowing sense of having
missed the supreme happiness of heaven, they would still be able to
occupy themselves in a variety of ways which would give them a certain
amount of happiness, just as in this world a man may carry a profound
sorrow in his heart and yet, under the stimulus of business or society
or intellectual study, have his attention happily diverted for many
hours every day. At this point the authorities drew the line. It is
related of an old Scotch lady that, referring to the Universalists,
she said, “Those people say that all men will be saved at last, but
_we_ hope for better things.” Whether this was the point of view of
the ecclesiastical powers or not, certain it is that they refused to
sanction the notion of any happiness, of howsoever humble an order,
in the abode of gloom, and gave a peremptory order to the professor
to take it all back. Well, he took it back as a matter of submission
to those whom he regarded as his lawful spiritual guides, but the
submission did not give him rest. If ecclesiastical authority was
entitled to respect on one side, science was urging even stronger
claims on the other. In August last, as we now learn, the professor
wrote to the Prefect of the Sacred Congregation of the Index,
explaining how he wished his submission to be understood, and as he and
the prefect could not come to an agreement about it, he withdrew the
submission altogether. Then he resolved to relieve his mind. It took
two articles in two separate magazines to do it--one in the Fortnightly
and one in the Nineteenth Century--but then it was done in a manner
admitting of no recall. No sooner had these articles appeared than
Cardinal Vaughan drew up an iron-clad declaration affirming the falsity
of every position the writer had taken, and required him to sign it.
Too late! The biologist and evolutionist in Professor Mivart had
finally triumphed over the theologian, and he met the cardinal’s demand
with a flat refusal. Thereupon his Eminence issued an order excluding
the recalcitrant _savant_ from the sacraments of the Church.

Mr. Mivart now knows where he is. He occupies the broad ground of
scientific truth. He breathes the free air of intellectual and moral
liberty. He still professes loyalty to the Church according to his
own conception of it, but he will no longer bow down to an authority
that assumes to prescribe his opinions in matters which he is quite
capable of judging for himself. He has arrived at the conclusion that
even as regards the interpretation of Scripture the Church is just as
liable to err as the humble layman. He quotes most persistently the
case of Galileo, in which the Church, in the most formal and official
manner, declared that Scripture taught what for nearly a century now
it has admitted Scripture does not teach. If the highest organs of
ecclesiastical authority could make such a blunder in Galileo’s day,
what blunders may they not commit in our day? But if the Church can err
egregiously in what is its own peculiar province--if anything is--how
great is likely to be its inaptitude when it undertakes to deal with
scientific questions!

“God has taught us,” says Mr. Mivart, “through history, that it is
not to ecclesiastical congregations but to men of science that he
has committed the elucidation of scientific questions, whether such
questions are or are not treated of by Scripture, the Fathers, the
Church’s common teaching, or special congregations or tribunals of
ecclesiastics actually summoned for the purpose. This also applies to
all science--to Scripture criticism, to biology, and to all questions
concerning evolution, the antiquity of man, and the origin of either
his body or his soul or of both. For all ecclesiastics who know nothing
of natural science it is an act necessarily as futile as impertinent to
express any opinion on such subjects.”

The opposition of the rulers of the Church to the true theory of
the solar system in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries is
paralleled, according to Mr. Mivart, by their opposition to the
doctrine of evolution to-day. He refers to the fact that two Catholic
professors who had ventured to give a partial support to the doctrine
in question--one of them Father Zahm, who contributed an article,
as many of our readers will remember, to this magazine a couple of
years ago--had both been compelled to retract and disavow what they
had published on the subject. Professor Mivart draws a distinction,
however, between the rulers of the Church and the Church. The latter
he idealizes--and we by no means dispute his right to do so--as a
vast organization the office of which is to keep alive man’s sense
of spiritual things, and to bear eternal testimony in favor of those
truths of the heart which do not admit, like intellectual truths, of
logical demonstration. Though cut off by authority from participation
in the rites of the Church, he feels himself still one in sympathy with
all who in the Church are aspiring to a higher life. We look upon his
case as a very instructive one, affording as it does clear evidence of
the absolute incompatibility between any authoritative system of dogma
and the free pursuit of truth. It has taken Professor Mivart a long
time to arrive at his present standpoint, but it is well that he has
got there at last. His example, we believe, will encourage not a few
to assert in like manner their right to think freely and to utter what
they think.


When our article of last month, entitled A Commission in Difficulties,
was written we had not seen the paper by Mr. Theodore Dreiser, in
Harper’s Magazine for February, describing the important educational
work which the Western railways are doing with a view to promoting the
prosperity of the agricultural regions through which they pass. In
our article we observed that “the more interference there is between
parties who, in the last resort, are dependent upon one another’s good
will, the less likely they are to recognize their substantial identity
of interest.” What Mr. Dreiser clearly shows is how great the community
of interest is between the railroads on the one side and the farming
community on the other, and how fully that community of interest is
recognized by the railways at least. The freight agent of a given line
is charged with the duty of developing to the utmost--in the interest,
primarily, of his road, it may readily be granted--the agricultural
resources of the country through which it runs. He has his assistants,
who look after different branches of the work, such as crop-raising,
cattle-grazing, dairying, poultry-raising, etc. “Through this
department,” the writer says, “the railroads are doing a remarkably
broad educational work, not only of inspecting the land, but of
educating the farmers and merchants, and helping them to become wiser
and more successful. They give lectures on soil nutrition and vegetable
growing, explain conditions and trade shipments, teach poultry-raising
and cattle-feeding, organize creameries for the manufacture of cheese
and butter, and explain new business methods to merchants who are slow
and ignorant in the matter of conducting their affairs.” An agent of
the railway will visit every town along the line a certain number of
times every year to see what he can do to quicken trade. Finally, in
the great centers there are special agents who “look after incoming
shipments, and work for the interests of the merchants and farmers by
finding a market for their products.” Examples are given showing how
the railways are able to impart, and do impart, information of the
highest value to the farmers, such as puts them in the way of getting
greatly improved returns from their land.

Of course, the railways want business, but it is eminently satisfactory
when one party who wants business uses his best efforts on behalf of
another in order that by making him prosperous he himself may prosper.
When things get into this shape they are all right, as the phrase is.
The accepted definition of a perfect action is one which benefits
all who are parties to it. Things are on a much better foundation
when people are mutually benefiting one another, each primarily in
his own interest, than when it is all philanthropy on one side and
passive acceptance of benefits on the other. Philanthropy is an
uncertain thing, and its effects are uncertain. Its quality will take,
in general, a good deal of training; but business, on an honest and
reciprocally helpful basis, is good all through.

It is a happy circumstance that there are natural laws and forces at
work which tend to produce a healthful social equilibrium. The true
statesman is he who is on the watch to discern these forces and these
laws, resolved that if he can not aid their operation he shall at least
throw no obstacle in the way of their activity. The amount of harm
that is done by coming between people who would be certain to arrange
their business relations satisfactorily, if they were only left to do
it without interference, can hardly be estimated. Man is fundamentally
a social animal, and he wants, if he can possibly get it, the good
opinion of his fellows. This is a principle which legislation too much
overlooks, but it is one on which, as we believe, the future progress
of society depends, and which, in spite of the blunders of legislators,
will more and more assert itself as the years go on.

Fragments of Science.

=Religious Suicides.=--Suicides from religious fanaticism, which are
still prescribed by some sects, are compared, as having a common
origin, with propitiatory or expiatory human sacrifices, by Herr Lasch,
in an article of which we find a review in the _Rivista Italiana di
Sociologica_. Voluntary sacrifices, which abound in the history of
ancient peoples, had nearly always in view the removal of perils or the
cessation of public calamities by appeasing the anger of the divinity
through the offering of a human victim. Thus Macaria, the daughter of
Hercules, at Athens during the Peloponnesian war, and Codrus and the
Athenian youth Cratinus voluntarily offered their lives to aid their
country by the sacrifice. The consul Decius gave himself up to assure
victory to his legions, and Adrian’s favorite Antinous to save his
imperial protector. Spontaneous offerings of human victims to appease
offended divinities are mentioned in the traditions of the ancient
Germans, and it was usually their chief or king who suffered for the
good of the people. Offerings of this sort are far from infrequent
among barbarous and half-civilized peoples. Among some tribes in China
a man is sacrificed every year for the public welfare. Such voluntary
renunciations of life to acquire merit with the divinity, to gain
favors, to atone for sins, and fulfill vows are very common in India,
particularly where Brahmanism is most influential. Special methods were
pointed out in the Hindu laws for performing such sacrifices as would
be sinful for a Brahman, but not for a Sutra, who, before abandoning
life, should make gifts to the Brahmans. A favorite method was to
drown one’s self in the Ganges, and particular spots in the river
were designated for this act. The sacred books mention five methods
of performing sacrifice to assure a better fortune in the next life:
Starving to death, being burned alive, burial in snow, being eaten by a
crocodile, and cutting the throat or being drowned at a particular spot
in the Ganges. In fulfillment of vows, sons would sacrifice themselves
for their mothers by jumping from a rock. To keep up the courage of
the victim, the Sivaitic rituals promised many beatitudes to him who
courageously met death for his sins, and threatened eternal punishment
to one who performed the sacrifice in a base manner. And when the
suicide had been decided upon they allowed no retreat or repentance,
but forced its consummation. A special apparatus for suicide formerly
existed in some of the villages in central India, consisting of a
guillotine which the victim himself set in action. Casting one’s
self under the wheels of the car of Juggernaut was another method of
religious suicide. Some philosophical schools prescribed subjection of
the body to various pains for the purification of the soul; and the
books of Manu, which also impose the destruction of human sensibility,
have contributed much to preserve this idea in India and spread abroad,
especially in the Malay Archipelago, the usage of voluntary sacrifice
to the divinity. The aborigines of the Canary Islands have employed
voluntary sacrifices on the coming of an epidemic, and the ancient
Mexicans and Peruvians observed them in honor of the divinity.

       *       *       *       *       *

=“Manuring with Brains.”=--“New Soil Science” is the name Mr. D.
Young gives, in the Nineteenth Century, to the results of the studies
of soil bacteriology prosecuted by Mr. John Hunter and Professor
McAlpine on Lord Roseberry’s estate of Dalmeny, and “manuring with
brains” to the application of them. Attention has been called to
the value of the bacteria in the soil as nitrifying and fertilizing
elements by the experiments of Sir John Bennet Lawes and Sir Joseph
Henry Gilbert at Rothamsted, and more forcibly by experiments coming
after them but suggested by them. It had also been found that caustic
lime used upon the soil is liable to destroy the nitrifying and other
advantageous organisms, while carbonate of lime is surely useful, and
a due proportion of lime compounds is essential to the best discharge
of their functions. The discovery that the bacteria of the root
nodules of leguminous plants possess the power of absorbing the free
nitrogen of the atmosphere and rendering it available for the use of
the plant was made by Messrs. Hunter and McAlpine, according to Mr.
Young, and was taught by them to their students several years before
Hellriegel, to whom it is usually ascribed, fell upon it. They found
that several well-defined sets of bacteria were concerned in the work
of nitrification, and isolated and cultivated the nitrous germ, but
could accomplish nothing with the nitric germ till they used old mortar
or some lime dressing with it. They also found that lime compounds
in the surface soil served a further important use by preventing the
soluble silicates from being taken up by the roots of the plant, the
lime taking up those salts and forming insoluble silicates which
were retained in the soil and did not diffuse into the plant. So a
non-silicated stem, or a cellulose stem, was formed, which would bend
before the wind without breaking, while the non-silicated straw was
much superior in value to the silicated straw. Messrs. Hunter and
McAlpine denied that silica in the plant gave strength and solidity
to the stem, and pointed out that it rather, like glass, made the
straw brittle. They found out, further, that large quantities of
carbonic acid were produced in the soil through the operation of the
ferments, and found an outlet through the subsoil drains. They made
other discoveries which threatened to render it necessary to revise
the whole fabric of agricultural science, and were called to account
by the institutions in which they were teachers for their heresies.
They maintained their position till the opportunity came to them to
make tests of their theories on Lord Rosebery’s Dalmeny farm. Among the
results of the Dalmeny experiments are proof of the value of a dressing
of ground lime in proportions not large enough to kill the bacteria,
emphasis of the value of potash for every crop, and the discovery of a
remedial treatment for the finger-and-toe pest in turnips. “When these
experiments were commenced, ground lime for agricultural purposes had
never been heard of, whereas now there are at least six lime works
where extensive grinding plants are kept hard at work to supply the
ever-increasing demand for that substance. Since the principles for the
new soil science have been put in successful practice at Dalmeny the
scientific authorities, who at first had branded these principles as
absurd heresies, have changed their tune,” and now the chemical adviser
of the Highland Society has declared that he accepts the new doctrines.

       *       *       *       *       *

=Plague Antitoxin.=--In justifying his belief in the efficacy of the
inoculation treatment against the plague, Lord Curzon, the Viceroy of
India, said, in a recent address at Poonah: “If I find, as I do find,
out of one hundred plague seizures among uninoculated persons, the
average number who die is somewhere about seventy to eighty per cent,
while, in a corresponding number of seizures among inoculated persons,
the proportions are entirely reversed and seventy to eighty per cent,
if not more, are saved--and these calculations have been furnished from
more than one responsible quarter--I say figures of that kind can not
fail to carry conviction; and I altogether fail to see how, in the face
of them, it is possible for any one to argue that inoculation is not
a wise and necessary precaution.” He had been personally visiting the
plague hospitals and camps about the city, and had already supported
his advocacy of this treatment by having himself and his party
inoculated at Simla with the plague antitoxin.

       *       *       *       *       *

=Cultivation of India Rubber.=--An article in the Bulletin of the
Bureau of American Republics represents that there are lands in
Mexico and Central America equally adapted to the cultivation of the
India-rubber tree with the Brazilian plantations, and having, in
addition, a salubrious climate. Formerly dependence for the supply of
India rubber was placed in the product of wild trees, but with the
increase in the uses for it, and the consequent rise in prices, capital
is being invested in this industry, and its profitable cultivation is
being largely engaged in. The trees do not flourish at an elevation
exceeding five hundred feet above sea level, and low land, moist but
not swampy, is the best. Land suitable for planting could be bought
for twenty-five cents an acre in large tracts, but it now brings from
two dollars to five dollars Mexican. These lands can be used for other
crops while the trees are growing up, and thus made partly to repay
the cost of starting the plantation. So the expense of clearing the
land preparatory to planting it is largely met, if facilities for
transplantation are at hand, by the sale of the dyewoods, sandalwood,
satinwood, ebony, and mahogany that are cut off. The land should be
chosen along the banks of streams, where the soil is rich, deep, and
loamy, and the presence of wild rubber trees is a sure indication of
its suitability. These wild trees should be left standing, and young
seedlings should be kept and transplanted into their proper places. The
densest plantation compatible with good results is fifteen feet apart,
giving about one hundred and ninety-three trees to the acre. Once in
the ground, the tree needs no attention or cultivation beyond keeping
down the undergrowth, which can be effected by the aid of a side crop.
The tree propagates itself by the seeds or nuts, which drop in May and
June. By the sixth or seventh year the grove will be in bearing, and
thereafter should yield from three to five pounds of India rubber per

       *       *       *       *       *

=The New York Botanical Garden’s Museum.=--The museum building of the
New York Botanical Garden is substantially completed, and most of
the works are in an advanced state of forwardness. The museum cases
(for public inspection) and the herbarium cases (for students) are in
position, and the herbarium cases are filled. Among the recent gifts
of value to the institution are the miscellaneous collection of John
J. Crooke, made about thirty years ago and containing about twenty
thousand specimens, among which are a set of the plants obtained by
the United States Pacific Exploring Expedition of about 1850; the
collection of between twenty and thirty thousand specimens made by Dr.
F. M. Hexamer in Switzerland and the United States; a collection of
seven or eight thousand numbers, made by Mr. and Mrs. A. A. Heller,
representing between twelve and thirteen hundred species, some of which
are new to science; and specimens of crude drugs, for the Economic
Museum, presented by Parke, Davis & Co. A permanent microscopic
exhibition is to be established by Mr. William E. Dodge, at his own
expense. It will be furnished with at least twenty-five microscopes,
and with specimens carefully prepared and inclosed, to secure them
from injury. A set of more than two hundred volumes on botany and
horticulture, which formed a part of the library of Dr. David Hosack,
founder of the first botanical garden in New York, has been presented
by the New York Academy of Medicine, which received it from the New
York Hospital.

       *       *       *       *       *

=Action of Sea Water on Cements.=--As the result of examinations of
many masonry structures immersed in sea water, Dr. Wilhelm Michaelis
has found that Portland cement does not resist the chemical action of
such water so well as do Roman cement and the hydraulic cements. The
soluble sulphates in the sea water appear to enter into a substitution
combination with the lime which exists in the cement in a free state
or is liberated in the hardening, and it is converted into a sulphate,
while disintegration ensues. In Roman cement the lime exists in
combination, and there is no inclination toward the formation of
a sulphate, and hydraulic limes resemble Roman cement in physical
qualities. Dr. Michaelis suggests that hydraulic cementing materials
containing more lime than is required for the formation of stable
hydro-silicate and aluminate may be made suitable for submarine work by
an admixture of trass or puzzolana, whereby the cementing strength of
the mass will be greatly increased, and it will be enabled to withstand
the disintegrating action of the sea water.

       *       *       *       *       *

=Stories of Amazonian Pygmies.=--Dr. D. G. Brinton subjected the
stories of the existence of pygmy tribes on the upper tributaries of
the Amazon to a careful examination, and came to the conclusion that
the facts did not show anything more than that there are undersized
tribes in that part of South America, with occasional individual
examples of dwarfs, such as occur in all communities. It is still a
question, he observed, “whether the rumor of a pygmy people somewhere
in the tropical forests is not to be classed with the stories which
threw a strange glamour about those inaccessible regions in the early
days of the discovery. There were many of these, for I am speaking of
the part of the map where was located the El Dorado, the golden city of
Manoa, the home of the warlike Amazons; where dwelt the men with tails
and the mysterious _Oyacoulets_, warriors with white skin, blue eyes,
and long, blond beards. All have vanished from history but the pygmies,
and their turn will probably soon come.”

       *       *       *       *       *

=Relief and Pension Funds of Railroad Men.=--In instituting a pension
fund for the men in its employ the Pennsylvania Railroad established,
in addition and supplementary to the relief fund of which they
enjoy the privilege, a special fund for those who are retired or
superannuated, which is adjusted according to their length of service
and the pay they have been receiving. The relief fund affords every
man employed an opportunity to provide for himself in case of sickness
or disability. It is co-operative, and is supported jointly by the
employed men, its members, and the company, the expenses of operation
and the deficiencies in it being met by the company. The additional
pension is the company’s own undertaking. Besides the manifestly
humane purpose of this arrangement--to care for the present and future
interests of its men--it promises to work to increase and improve the
effectiveness of the company’s service. Its tendency will be to give
the men greater heart in their work, and to cause them to identify
themselves more fully with it. Decent provision being made for the
retirement of old hands, the service can be kept manned by a younger
and more robust class. The new fund will effect the entire force on the
lines of the Pennsylvania system east of Pittsburg and Erie, extending
over a trackage of more than forty-one hundred miles.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Broom as a Spreader of Disease.=--Dust being now generally
recognized as one of the most efficient vehicles of the germs of
disease, Dr. Max Girsdansky finds the broom to be one of the most
active agents in sending them into air, where it is diffused by
whatever breezes may be blowing there. The housewife digs the dust
out of her carpets and stirs it out of the quiet corners where it has
accumulated, wearing an old dress and covering her head while she
leaves her lungs exposed, then shakes her rugs in the yard, and the
street sweeper transfers the dust he has charge of from the pavement
to the atmosphere, where we can breathe our fill of consumption from
day to day. Therefore, the author holds, the broom, “far from serving
any hygienic purpose, is the cause of the maintenance of organic dust
in the atmosphere of the large cities of the world, and as such is the
most important cause of the existence and spread of tuberculosis.”
Further, the carpet is pronounced “an unhygienic article, serving
as a fine breeding ground for vegetable parasites, necessitating
the use of the broom and the duster, and thereby becoming a reason
for the existence of organic dust.” As the only proper and safe way
of procuring the cleanliness of the floors and streets of our large
cities, Dr. Girsdansky advises the free use of water in the shape
of showers, or with sprinkling wagons, hoes, mops, etc., and that
all floors and floor coverings of the house and the street be so
constructed as to facilitate the free use of water in these ways.

       *       *       *       *       *

=Alkali Soils in Montana.=--Mr. F. W. Traphagen, of the Montana
Agricultural Experiment Station, ascribes the origin of the alkali
soil in the arid regions to the failure of the elements to remove
the soda salts set free on the disintegration of the rocks, which in
humid regions are taken up and washed away by the rains. The soluble
salts are dissolved by the water that falls on the surface, and are
carried down when it soaks through the ground, to form an element in
the ground water. They return thence to the soil when water is brought
up by capillary action to supply the place of that lost by surface
evaporation, and accumulate there. Then, as the water evaporates
they are left on the surface, forming, when in sufficient quantity,
the white crusts seen in badly alkalied places. The most effective
remedy for alkali might probably be found in underdrainage, which
would prevent the ground water rising to the top, and would carry
off the salts. This being at present impracticable on the large scale
that would be required, such expedients as surface flooding and such
cultivation of crops as would tend to check evaporation are suggested.
The pernicious effects of “black alkali” or sodium carbonate are
seen when it forms as much as about one tenth of one per cent of the
soil, in the corrosion and solution of vegetable matter--the stems of
plants--exposed to it. It also dissolves the humus or vegetable mold,
forming dark-colored solutions and depositing a black residue upon
the evaporation of the water--whence its name--and it destroys the
tillability of many soils. The “white alkali” or sodium sulphate can
be borne in much larger proportions in the soil, and promotes the best
crops just before it completely destroys them. The author remarks that
the foundations of a number of buildings in Billings, Montana, are
gradually becoming insecure because of the disintegration of the rock,
due to the absorption of alkali salts, followed by the evaporation of
the water and the deposit of salts within the pores of the rock. As the
process continues, the rock particles are forced apart.

       *       *       *       *       *

=Future of the New York Canals.=--The Committee on Canals of New York
State recommend decidedly in their report to the Governor that those
highways should not be abandoned but maintained, and the principal ones
enlarged, while the others should be kept up as navigable feeders. Of
two projects for enlarging the Erie Canal, that undertaken in 1895,
with modifications to be executed at a cost of $21,161,645, and a
larger one to cost $58,894,668, the committee prefer the larger one,
because it will permanently secure the commercial supremacy of New
York, while the other is “at best only a temporary makeshift.” An
important principle emphasized in the report is that the efficiency of
the canals depends upon their management as well as upon their physical
size. Therefore a policy should be followed that will encourage
transportation companies to seek the use of them; mechanical means of
traction should be employed, and mechanical power should be substituted
for hand power in certain operations; the force engaged upon them
should be organized on a more permanent basis of fitness, so as to
furnish an attractive career to graduates of scientific institutions;
and efficient guards should be thrown over the expenditure of money “so
as to make impossible a repetition of the unfortunate results of the
$9,000,000 appropriation.”

       *       *       *       *       *

=Floating Stones.=--While engaged in scientific research in southwest
Patagonia, Mr. Erland Nordenskiold observed a considerable number of
small fragments of slate floating upon the surface, packed together
in larger or smaller clusters. The surface of the stones was dry, and
they sank immediately when it became wet. Their specific gravity was
2.71, that of the water being 1.0049. The fragments contained no air
cavities perceptible to the naked eye, but small, gaseous bubbles could
be seen attached to their under surfaces, and stones on the very fringe
of the beach which were just beginning to float were observed to be
lightened by gaseous bubbles. The author was not able to investigate
the phenomenon more closely, but believes that besides the visible
bubbles they were surrounded by an envelope of gas, supported by an
insignificant coating of algæ, by which they are enveloped. The greasy
surface of the mineral also prevented the water from adhering to
them, and caused them to be surrounded with a concave meniscus, which
contributed much to their floating.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The “Periodicity of War.”=--The doctrine of “the periodicity of
war” was presented at the Lake Mohonk Conference on International
Arbitration in May-June, 1899, by General Alfred C. Barnes, with the
introductory remark that “no one deprecates war more than the soldier
who serves from a sense of duty.” The speaker said that “with all
our privileges, and in spite of the elevated spirit that undeniably
prevails among us, the original savage lurks in the hearts of men here
as elsewhere.” In two hundred and twenty-five years we have had ten
principal wars--five during the colonial period and five since our
independence was undertaken. The average interval between wars has
been about twenty years--“an extremely interesting periodicity, as it
brings into the arena a new race of fighting young men. So it seems
that for each fresh generation of our youth the temple gates of Janus
have to be opened, that the furies there confined may rush forth and
devastate the earth. It looks almost like the operation of a natural
law.” General Barnes’s theory of the origin of the war that the United
States is still engaged in is the simple one that we were “spoiling for
a fight.”

       *       *       *       *       *

=Expert Opinions respecting Food Preservatives.=--At a recent hearing
before an English Official Committee on Preservatives and Coloring
Matters in Food, the representative of an eminent firm of preservers
said that preservatives were not very generally used with fruits and
jams. His firm regarded them as quite unnecessary, but he would not
say they ought to be prohibited if used in moderate quantity. Besides
coloring matter in vegetables, the only article used by his firm for
coloring was an extract of cochineal. Mr. John Tubb Thomas, a medical
officer, told of children who were injured by milk containing boracic
acid, and said that in his experiments upon himself about fifteen
grains of that substance a day had upset his digestive organs and
produced sickness, with diarrhœa and headache. The use of the acid,
he said, should certainly be prohibited in new milk, which was so
largely the food of invalids and infants. Dr. W. H. Corfield said he
had found salicylic acid in the lighter wines and beers. It was a
slightly acrid, irritating substance, which was used externally for the
removal of corns and warts, and was a most undesirable article to put
in food. Mr. Walter Collingwood Williams, a public analyst, had found
salicylic acid in a number of temperance, non-alcoholic drinks. Dr.
Kaye, a medical officer of health, showed that the number of infant
deaths was increasing, while the general death rate was decreasing, and
attributed the fact, partly at least, to the growing and excessive use
of preservatives.

       *       *       *       *       *

=Pawnshops in Germany.=--Between half a dozen and a dozen of the
state pawnshops which were common in Germany in the seventeenth and
eighteenth centuries still exist. The United States vice-consul at
Cologne has given a considerable list of municipal pawnshops in the
more important cities of all parts of Germany. On the whole, the
number of these institutions is larger in Germany than in France, but
smaller than in Belgium, Holland, and Italy. The business of pawnshops
appears, at least more recently, to depend less upon general economic
than on special, local causes. The German law has usually required
private persons doing a pawnbroking business to take out special
licenses, and has exercised a more or less strict supervision over
them. The supervision practically lacked efficiency, and more stringent
regulations were imposed by a statute enacted in 1879, which is now the
basis of the existing law of the German Empire. Under this law license
is refused to persons who are unfitted for the business, and is not
issued at any rate unless a necessity is shown for the institution.
The imperial law is supplemented by special laws of the various German

       *       *       *       *       *

=Animals of the Ocean Depths.=--While plant life in the ocean is
limited to shallow waters, Sir John Murray says fishes and members
of all the invertebrate groups are distributed over the floor of the
ocean at all depths. The majority of these deep-sea animals live by
eating the mud, clay, or ooze, or by catching the minute particles of
organic matter which fall from the surface. It is probably not far from
the truth to say that three fourths of the deposits now covering the
floor of the ocean have passed through the alimentary canals of marine
animals. These mud-eating species, many of which are of gigantic size
when compared with their allies living in the shallow coastal waters,
become in turn the prey of numerous rapacious animals armed with
peculiar prehensile and tactile organs. Many deep-sea animals present
archaic characters; still, the deep sea can not be said to contain more
remnants of fauna which flourished in remote geological periods than
the shallow and fresh waters of the continents.

       *       *       *       *       *

=The Site of Ophir.=--Dr. Carl Peters, an African explorer recently
returned to London, believes that he has found the Ophir whence King
Solomon’s gold was brought, in the country between the Zambesi and
the Pungwa Rivers, in Portuguese Africa and eastern Mashonaland. Many
rivers, some quite extensive, of undetermined origin, and traces of
ancient mining enterprises, are found in the region, and gold is still
washed there. One site is Fura, on the Muira River, about fifteen miles
south of the Zambesi. The name Fura is said to be a native corruption
of the word Afur, by which the Arabs of the sixteenth century called
the district, and that to be the Saharan or south Arabian form of the
Hebrew Ophir. The natives are unlike the ordinary Africans, and have a
distinctly Jewish type of face. A chief informed Dr. Peters concerning
the position of some ancient workings, and, following his directions,
the explorer found ruins “of an undoubtedly Semitic type.” Dr. Peters’s
hypotheses and evidences must be accepted for what they are worth.
Other explorers have found Ophir at various points in Africa and
Arabia, and even in India and elsewhere, and have been as satisfied and
as sure as he with their identifications.


An instructive address, before the Iron and Steel Institute of
Great Britain, was recently delivered by Sir W. Roberts Austen on
the progress made in the iron and steel industries during the past
century. The great revolution which the discovery of steel brought
about is dwelt upon at length, and its far-reaching importance, not
only in the iron industry itself but in all other industries and in the
destinies of England herself, pointed out. In the early days of the
industry it was held that the different qualities of iron were due to
the different localities from which the ore was obtained, but late in
the eighteenth century the great Swedish chemist, Bergman, of Upsala,
clearly showed that carbon is the element to which steel and cast
iron owe their distinctive properties. Clouet’s celebrated experiment
on the carburization of iron by the diamond followed. “Well might
Bergman express astonishment at the action of carbon on iron. Startling
as the statement may seem, the destinies of England throughout the
century, and especially during the latter half of it, have been mainly
influenced by the use of steel. Hardly a step of our progress or
an incident of our civilization has not in one way or another been
influenced by the properties of iron and steel. It is remarkable that
these properties have been determined by the relations subsisting
between a mass of iron, itself protean in its nature, and the few
tenths per cent of carbon it contains.” In 1800 the production of pig
iron in England was about 200,000 tons; in 1898 it was 8,769,249 tons.

       *       *       *       *       *

A note in Nature describes an ingenious arrangement for controlling
the direction of torpedoes by means of ether waves. Two solenoids,
into which are drawn iron cores, are attached to the rudder head, the
core which is drawn in depending, of course, upon the direction of the
received current. Two rods projecting above the surface of the water
receive the waves and are in circuit with a coherer of special type,
which affects a relay in the usual way. The actual processes involved
in steering and controlling a torpedo are somewhat as follows: The
torpedo, containing a suitable combination of the apparatus above
mentioned, is launched from a vessel containing the necessary sending
apparatus. Suppose the torpedo goes off its course. Then, by means of
a switch, an induction coil is supplied with an electric current, and
waves or oscillations are generated. These, on reaching the torpedo,
pass into the projecting wire and thence reach the coherer. This
operates the relay, closing the secondary circuit. An electric current
now flows through a “selector” to one of the solenoids, the iron core
is sucked into right or left, and the helm is thus turned. When the
torpedo has attained a proper course the switch is opened and the waves
cease. The vibration in the neighborhood of the coherer restores it
to the original resistance; the current passing through it becomes
weaker and ceases to affect the relay coil, which therefore opens
the secondary circuit and allows the helm to fly back to the midship
position. A large model of the apparatus has been constructed, and it
is said to work with entire success under all kinds of conditions. The
inventors are Mr. Walter Jameson and Mr. John Trotter. It is stated
that Nikola Tesla has American patents for a somewhat similar device.

       *       *       *       *       *

In the absence of the author, Professor Dewar’s paper on the
solidification of hydrogen was read in the British Association by Sir
William Crook. It shows that solid hydrogen presents the appearance
of frozen water, and not, as had been anticipated by many, of frozen
mercury; hence it is now definitely decided that it is not metallic.
The temperature of the solid is 16° absolute at thirty-five millimetres
pressure, and it melts at 16° or 17° absolute, the practical limit
of the temperature obtainable by its evaporation being 14° or 15°
absolute. Thus the last of the old gas has been solidified. It was
further mentioned, in connection with these statements, that Professor
Dewar had succeeded in liquefying helium.

       *       *       *       *       *

The organizing committees of the Congresses of Aëronautics and
Meteorology--these being cognate subjects--of the Exposition of 1900
have decided to hold the meetings of these bodies in such a manner that
all members can attend the sessions of both. The programme arranged for
the Aëronautical Congress contemplates the discussion, under aspects
which are set forth in detail, of “problems” relating to free balloons,
their management and use; captive balloons, steerable balloons, and
aviation; and the scientific applications of balloon observations to
problems in astronomy, meteorology, and physiology; also of their
use for purposes of reconnoissance and topographical surveys, and of
photography from balloons. In a different order of ideas, the congress
may occupy itself with questions of legislation and international law
which concern aëronauts in times of peace and of war.

       *       *       *       *       *

Three State catalogues of Ohio plants have heretofore been issued.
The first, by J. S. Newberry, was published in the State Agricultural
Report in 1859; the second, by H. C. Beardslee, was published in
1874, and was reprinted in the Agricultural Report for 1879; and
the third, by W. A. Kellerman and W. C. Werner, was included in the
State Geological Report for 1893. This work contains a bibliography,
and gives the names of the first known collectors of the less common
species. A fourth catalogue, consisting of a checklist of the
_Pteridophytes_ and _Spermophytes_, recently published by Prof. W. A.
Kellerman, contains the species and varieties numbered serially, as in
the State Herbarium of nearly ten thousand sheets, with the sequence of
groups as by Engler and Prantl, and the nomenclature as used by Britton
and Brown.


The committee of the St. Petersburg Astronomical Society for the
revision of the Russian calendar, to make it agree with the Gregorian,
has found it necessary to move slowly. The festivals prove a formidable
obstacle to the desired reform, and the people will have to be prepared
for the change before it can be instituted. The plan now is to use
both dates, Russian and Gregorian, together till the new style can be
made familiar, and it is proposed to make the double use compulsory on
private as well as on public documents and papers.

       *       *       *       *       *

A steamboat company is placing its little vessels on the canals of
Venice, and the gondolas, which were one of the charms of the city to
travelers, are destined to disappear--unless a few may be reserved to
gratify the curiosity of tourists.

       *       *       *       *       *

The Commissioner of Education of Rhode Island has issued a circular
to teachers, calling attention to the work of the Audubon Society for
the Preservation of Birds, and to the incalculable value, from various
points of view, of bird life, and advises them to foster Nature study
as furnishing a natural channel by means of which instruction and
information on the subject may readily be brought before the children,
and through them to the people generally.

       *       *       *       *       *

In a paper on The Ultimate Basis of Time Divisions in Geology, T.
C. Chamberlin accepts it as proved that there were no universal
breaks in sedimentation or in the fundamental continuity of life, no
physical cataclysms attended by universal destruction of life, and
that sedimentation has been in constant progress somewhere and life
continuous and self-derivative since the beginning. He then raises the
question whether this continuity of physical and vital action proceeded
by heterogeneous impulses or by correlated pulsations. The author’s
conclusion is in favor of the hypothesis of correlated pulsations
involving a rhythmical periodicity.

       *       *       *       *       *

Nettle fiber is said to be coming into great favor for the manufacture
of fine yarns and tissues. Several factories in Germany are using it,
and the introduction of the extensive cultivation of nettles into the
African colony of the Cameroons is contemplated.

       *       *       *       *       *

There are now, according to the last annual Report of the Commissioner
of the General Land Office, thirty-six forest reservations (exclusive
of the Afognak Forest and Fish-Culture Reserve in Alaska) in the United
States, embracing an estimated area of 46,021,899 acres. This estimate
is for the aggregate areas within the boundaries of the reservations,
but the lands reserved are only the vacant public lands therein. The
actual reserved area is therefore somewhat less than the estimate.

       *       *       *       *       *

Experiments made by Professor Dewar and Sir W. Thisleton Dyer, and
reported to the British Association, upon the effect of the temperature
of liquid hydrogen upon the germinative power of seeds, go to show that
life goes on at a temperature so low that ordinary chemical action is
practically stopped. Seeds of barley, vegetable marrow, mustard, and
the pea were immersed in liquid hydrogen for six hours, cooled to a
temperature of 453° F. below the temperature of melting ice, and came
out unchanged to the eye, and, when planted, all germinated.

       *       *       *       *       *

Sir John Lubbock, having been raised to the peerage, has adopted Lord
Avebury as his title, and will be henceforth so known.

       *       *       *       *       *

In our obituary list of men known to science are the names of N. E.
Green, F. R. A. S., who was distinguished for the excellence of his
planetary observations, particularly of Mars, made at Madeira in 1877,
and was the second President of the British Astronomical Association,
died November 10th, in his seventy-sixth year; Prof. E. E. Hughes,
inventor of the Hughes printing telegraph machine, the microphone, and
the induction balance, Fellow of the Royal Society, gold medalist, and
Chevalier of the Legion of Honor, who was born in London in 1831 and
was brought to the United States at an early age; Mr. J. R. Gregory,
mineralogist; M. Marion, professor in the Scientific Faculty in the
University of Marseilles and Keeper of the Natural History Museum
there, who took part in the dredging trips of the Travailleur and the
Talisman, and contributed to the _Annales_ of the museum at Marseilles;
Dr. Hans Bruno Geinitz, geologist and paleontologist, at Dresden,
Saxony, in his eighty-sixth year; Walter Götze, botanist, while on an
expedition to German East Africa, December 9th; and Mr. W. T. Suffolk,
treasurer of the Royal Microscopical Society of Great Britain.


Agricultural Experiment Stations. Bulletins and Reports. Connecticut:
Twenty-third Annual Report. Part I. Fertilizers. Pp. 92; Bulletin No.
130. Commercial Feeding Stuffs in the Connecticut Market.--North Dakota
Weather and Crop Service, November, 1899, and January, 1900. Pp. 8
each.--United States Department of Agriculture: Agrostology Circular
No. 54. Smooth Brome-Grass. Pp. 10; No. 57. Experiments with Forage
Plants in Ontario. Pp. 3; Meteorological Chart of the Great Lakes.
Summary for the Season of 1899. Vol. II, No. 9. By Alfred J. H. Henry
and Norman B. Conger. Pp. 28, with maps.--West Virginia: Bulletin No.
61. Sheep-Feeding Experiments. By J. H. Stewart and Horace Atwood. Pp.
10; No. 62. A Study of the Effect of Incandescent Gaslight on Plant
Growth. By L. C. Corbett. Pp. 38, with plates.

American Grocer Publishing Company. Scientific Testimony against
the use of Alum in Food. (Evidence before the United States Senate
Investigating Committee.) Pp. 12.

Andrews, William. The Diuturnal Theory of the Earth, or Nature’s System
of constructing a Stratified Physical World. New York: Myra Andrews
and Ernest G. Stevens, 18 West Forty-fifth Street.

Benson, Lawrence Sluter. Principles of Finite Values in Mathematics.
Pp. 6.

Bland, Rev. J. P., Cambridge, Mass. What we Know about God. Pp. 12.

Bulletins, Reports, Announcements, etc. American Association for
the Advancement of Science: Forty-eighth Annual Meeting, Columbus,
Ohio, 1899. Proceedings. Pp. 527, with plates of portraits.--Annals
of the Astronomical Observatory of Harvard College. Vol. XXXII,
Part II. Visual Observations of the Moon and Planets. By. W. H.
Pickering, Director. Pp. 212, with plates; Vol. XXXIII. Miscellaneous
Researches, 1897-1899. Pp. 287, with plates; Vol. XLII, Part II.
Observations made at the Blue Hill Meteorological Observatory,
Massachusetts, 1897 and 1898, under the Direction of A. Lawrence
Rotch. Pp. 150.--Columbia University, New York: Summer Session, 1900.
Announcement. Pp. 24.--Cuba, Department of Posts: Annual Report for
the Fiscal Year ending June 30, 1899. Pp. 215.--Interstate Commerce
Commission: Preliminary Report on the Income Account of Railways in the
United States, to June 30, 1899. Pp. 70.--Massachusetts Institute of
Technology, Boston: Annual Catalogue, 1899-1900. Pp. 357.--Michigan:
Thirty-eighth Annual Report of the Secretary of the State Board of
Agriculture, and Twelfth Annual Report of the Experiment Station. Pp.
465.--Missouri Botanical Garden: Twelfth Annual Report. By William
Trelease. Pp. 151, with plates.--New York State: Report of the
Committee on Canals, 1899. Pp. 231, with charts; Sixteenth Annual
Report of the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 1898. Pp. 1179--Perkins
Institution and Massachusetts School for the Blind: Sixty-eighth Annual
Report. Pp. 325.--United States Department of Labor: Bulletin No. 26.
January, 1900. Pp. 236.--United States Geological Survey: Nineteenth
Annual Report. Part V. Forest Reserves. Pp. 400, with portfolio of maps.

Burns, J. J. The Story of English Kings according to Shakespeare. New
York: D. Appleton and Company. (Home-Reading Books.) Pp. 272.

Chambers, G. F. The Story of Eclipses. (Library of Useful Stories.) New
York: D. Appleton and Company. Pp. 222, with plates. 40 cents.

Citator, The. Ohio Edition. (Register of Citations in Legal Practice.)
Quarterly. Lapeer, Mich. Pp. 102.

Clinical Excerpts. Elberfeld Company, New York. Pp. 20.

Coulter, John M. Plant Structures. A Second Book of Botany. New York:
D. Appleton and Company. (Twentieth Century Text-Books.) Pp. 348. $1.20.

Deniker, J. The Races of Men. An Outline of Anthropology and
Ethnography. New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons. (Contemporary Science
Series.) Pp. 611. $1.50.

Echeveria i Reyes, Anibal. Voces Usadas en Chile. (Errors of Speech.)
Santiago. Pp. 246.

Hannay, P. M. How to gain Health and Long Life. Chicago: The Hazel
Pure-Food Company. Pp. 114.

I am that I am. A Dialogue of the Gods. By Sum quod Sum. New York:
Library of Liberal Classics. Pp. 21. 10 cents.

Kent, Rev. Alexander. The Plan of Salvation. Pp. 16.

La Pouge, G. Vachet de. L’Aryen Son Role Social. (The Aryan, his Social
Office.) Paris: Albert Fontemoing. Pp. 569. 10 francs.

Macmillan, The, Company. Announcements of New Books, Spring, 1900. Pp.

McIlwraith, J. N. Canada. (History for Young Readers.) New York: D.
Appleton and Company. Pp. 252.

Manning, Warren H. A Handbook for Planning and Planting Small Home
Grounds. Stout Manual-Training School, Menomonee, Wis. Pp. 76.

Richter, Victor von. Organic Chemistry, or Chemistry of the Carbon
Compounds. Edited by Prof. R. Anschütz and Dr. G. Schroeter. Authorized
translation by Edgar F. Smith. Philadelphia: P. Blakiston’s Son & Co.
Pp. 671. $3.

Richardson, Harriet. A New Species of Idotea, from Hakodate Bay, Japan.
Pp. 4.

Ward, Lester F. Description of a New Genus and Twenty New Species of
Fossil Cycadean Trunks from the Jurassic of Wyoming. Pp. 32, with 7

Wooster, L. C. Educational Value of the Natural Sciences. Pp. 18.



  Aggression, External and Internal. (Table), 386

  Agnosticism and Naturalism, Professor Ward on. H. Spencer, 349

  Agricultural Education in Foreign Countries. W. E. De Riemer, 218

  Agriculture: Alkali Soils in Montana. (Frag.), 734

      ”        Manuring with Brains. (Frag.), 731

      ”        Sea Water, Effect of, on Soil. (Frag.), 508

  Air Flight, Early Experiments in. M. B. Rivet, 603

  Alkali Soils in Montana. (Frag.), 734

  Allen, Grant, Death of. (Frag.), 389

  Amazonian Pygmies, Stories of. (Frag.), 733

  A More Excellent Way. (Table), 729

  Anarchist, A Paradoxical. C. Lombroso*, 312

  Anglo-Saxon Superiority. (Frag.), 620

  Animals of the Ocean Depths. (Frag.), 736

    ”     Reason? Do. Rev. E. R. Young*, 105

    ”        ”     ”  (Corr.), 122

  Annual Flowers. (Frag.), 394

  Anthropological Traits, Zola’s. (Frag.), 388

  Anthropology: Amazonian Pygmies, Stories of. (Frag.), 733

        ”       Anglo-Saxon Superiority. (Frag.), 620

        ”       A Survival of Mediæval Credulity. E. P. Evans, 577

        ”       Malay Folklore. R. C. Ford, 239

        ”       Origins of the American Races, Professor Putnam on.
                    (Frag.), 507

  Appleton, William H., The Late. (Table), 265

  Archæology: Athabascan Indian Lodge, An. (Frag.), 292

      ”       Egyptian Exploration, Recent Years of. W. M. Flinders
                    Petrie, 625

      ”       Ophir, The Site of. (Frag.), 736

      ”       Vinland and its Ruins. C. Horsford*, 160

  Art Form, The Study of. D. Cady Eaton*, 685

   ”  Value of the Study of. G. Perrot, 204

  Artificial India Rubber. (Frag.), 136

  Astronomy, Advance of, in the Nineteenth Century. Sir R. S. Ball, 289

      ”      Forenoon and Afternoon. C. F. Dowd, 492

      ”      Gegenschein, The. (Frag.), 618

      ”      Scenes on the Planets. G. P. Serviss*, 337

  Athabascan Indian Lodge, An. (Frag.), 392

  Bacteria of the Dairy. (Frag.), 284

  Ball, Sir R. S. Advance of Astronomy in the Nineteenth Century, 289
  Baxter, William, Jr. What makes the Trolley Car go*, 316, 408, 564

  Becker, W. F., M. D. The Morbid Sense of Injury, 596

  Birds, Busy. (Frag.), 138

  Blind Fishes of North America. C. H. Eigenmann*, 473

  Books Noticed, 126, 268

    Anthropological Institute of Great Britain, Quarterly Journal of,

    Astronomy, Elements of Practical. W. W. Campbell, 129.

    -- Stars and Telescopes. D. B. Todd, 132.

    Barrett, John. The Philippine Islands and American Interests in the
                    Far East, 133.

    Beeman, W. W., and Smith, D. E. New Plane and Solid Geometry, 273.

    Binet, Alfred. The Psychology of Reasoning, 274.

    Biology. Living Organism, The. A. Earl, 131.

    Botany. California Plants in their Homes. A. M. Davidson, 130.

    -- Plant Relations. J. M. Coulter, 131.

    British Race, The Story of the. J. Munro, 272.

    Buckley, J. M. Extemporaneous Oratory, 270.

    Bullen, F. T. Idylls of the Sea, 271.

    Campbell, W. W. Elements of Practical Astronomy, 129.

    Chemical Jurisprudence, Notes on. H. Huntington, 133.

    Cities, Growth of, in the Nineteenth Century. A. F. Weber, 126.

    Civil Engineers, Proceedings of the American Association of. April,
        1899, 278.

    Cope, E. D. Vertebrate Remains from the Port Kennedy Deposit, 133.

    Coulter, John M. Plant Relations, 131.

    Cragin, Belle S. Our Insect Friends and Foes, 273.

    Croke, W. J. D. Architecture, Painting, and Printing at Subiaco,

    Crook, James K. Mineral Waters of the United States and their
        Therapeutic Uses, 127.

    Dalton, D. How to Swim, 277.

    Davidson, Alice M. California Plants in their Homes, 130.

    Diet in Illness and Convalescence. A. W. Winthrop, 271.

    Earl, A. The Living Organism, 131.

    Economics. Liquor Laws, Centralized Administration of. C. M. L.
        Sites, 275.

    Electricity. Accumulators, Small. P. Marshall, 276.

    Entomology. Butterflies, Everyday. S. H. Scudder, 128.

    -- Insect Friends and Foes. B. S. Cragin, 273.

    Erlingsson, T. Ruins of the Saga Times, 277.

    Fish and Fisheries, Report of United States Commission of, for Year
        ending June 30, 1898, 276.

    Fiske, John. Through Nature to God, 268.

    Gardiner, C. A. Our Right to Acquire and Hold Foreign Territory, 134.

    Gellé, M. E. L’Audition et ses Organes, 128.

    Gelman, F. H. Elements of Blowpipe Analysis, 279.

    Geological Survey, United States, Eighteenth Annual Report, 272.

    Geometry, New Plane and Solid. Beeman and Smith, 273.

    Heilprin, A. Alaska and the Klondike, 270.

    History of the American Nation. A. C. McLaughlin, 129.

    Huntington, H. Notes on Chemical Jurisprudence, 133.

    Idylls of the Sea. F. T. Bullen, 271.

    Insect Friends and Foes. B. S. Cragin, 273.

    Interstate Commerce Commission, Tenth Annual Report of, 276.

    Jacoby, J. The Object of the Labor Movement, 279.

    Knowledge, Methods of. W. Smith, 273.

    Kruger, F. T. A Step Forward, 275.

    Labor Movement, The Object of the, 279.

    Leonard, J. W. Who’s Who In America, 274.

    Lucas, F. A. The Hermit Naturalist, 133.

    Luquer, L. McI. Minerals in Rock Sections, 130.

    McLaughlin, A. C. History of the American Nation, 129.

    Marshall, P. Small Accumulators, 276.

    Mathematics. Trigonometry, Elements of. H. C. Whitaker, 130.

    Medicine. Transactions Wyoming State Medical Society. First and
        Second Regular Meetings, 279.

    Memory, The Philosophy of, and Other Essays, 274.

    Mineralogy. Blowpipe Analysis, Elements of. F. H. Gelman, 279.

    -- Colombia, The Ores of. H. W. Nichols, 132.

    -- Crystals, The Characters of. A. J. Moses, 129.

    -- Microscopic Identification of Minerals in Rock Sections. L. McI.
           Luquer, 130.

    Mineral Waters of the United States. James K. Crook, 127.

    Montaigne on the Education of Children. L. E. Rector, 278.

    Moore, J. H. Better World Philosophy, 276.

    Morehouse, G. W. The Wilderness of Worlds, 131.

    Moses, A. J. The Characters of Crystals, 129.

    Munro, John. The Story of the British Race, 272.

    Naturalist, The Hermit. F. A. Lucas, 133.

    Nichols, H. W. The Ores of Colombia, 132.

    Oratory, Extemporaneous. J. M. Buckley, 270.

    Philosophy, Better World. J. H. Moore, 276.

    -- Through Nature to God. John Fiske, 268.

    Physiology. Hearing and its Organs. M. E. Gellé, 128.

    Port Kennedy Deposit, Vertebrate Remains from. E. D. Cope, 133.

    Psychologique, L’Année. A. Binet, 278.

    Psychology of Reasoning, The. A. Binet, 274.

    Railway Statistics in United States, Tenth Annual Report of
        Interstate Commerce Commission, 276.

    Reasoning, The Psychology of. A. Binet, 274.

    Reason, The Dawn of. J. Weir, Jr., 275.

    Rector, L. E. Montaigne on the Education of Children, 278.

    Saga Times, Ruins of the. T. Erlingsson, 277.

    Scudder, S. H. Everyday Butterflies, 128.

    Sites, Clement M. L. Centralized Administration of the Liquor Laws,

    Smith, D. T. The Philosophy of Memory and Other Essays, 274.

    Smith, W. Methods of Knowledge, 273.

    Southern Magazine, The, 278.

    Subiaco, Architecture, Painting, and Printing at. W. J. D. Croke,

    Swift, M. L. Anti-Imperialism, 134.

    Swim, How to. D. Dalton, 277.

    Todd, D. B. Stars and Telescopes, 132.

    Weber, Adna Ferrin. Growth of Cities in the Nineteenth Century, 126.

    Weir, J., Jr. The Dawn of Reason, 275.

    Whitaker, H. C. Elements of Trigonometry, 130.

    Who’s Who in America. J. W. Leonard, 274.

    Wilderness of Worlds, The. G. W. Morehouse, 131.

    Winthrop, Alice W. Diet in Illness and Convalescence, 271.

    Witt, H. Fundamental Principles of Nature, Some Observations on the,

    Wyoming State Medical Society, Transactions of First and Second
        Regular Meetings, 279.

  Botanical Garden’s Museum, New York. (Frag.), 733

  Botany: Annual Flowers. (Frag.), 394

    ”     Genuine Starch Factories. B. D. Halsted*, 716

    ”     Plant Names, English. (Frag.), 140

    ”     The New Field of. B. D. Halsted, 98

  Briggs, C. A. Is the Christian Religion Declining?, 423

  Brooks, W. K. The Wonderful Century, 25

  Broom as a Spreader of Disease, The. (Frag.), 734

  Bunsen, Death of. (Frag.), 281

  Calcium, Metallic. (Frag.), 283

  California, Forestry in. (Frag.), 509

  Cambridge University. (An English University.) H. Stotesbury*, 14

  Canals, Future of the New York. (Frag.), 735

  Carbonic Acid and Climate. (Frag.), 621

  Carrington, James B. Winter Birds in a City Park*, 366

  Cements, Action of, on Sea Water. (Frag.), 733

  Chemistry: A Hundred Years of. F. W. Clarke, 673

      ”      Calcium, Metallic. (Frag.), 283

      ”      Hydrogen, The Solidification of. (Frag.), 618

      ”      New Element, Another. (Frag.), 509

  Children, Literature for. (Frag.), 618

  China, Trade Corporations in. M. Courant, 722

  Christian Religion Declining? Is the. C. A. Briggs, 423

  City Roadways, Modern. N. P. Lewis*, 524

  Civilized and Savage. (Frag.), 141

  Clarke, F. W. A Hundred Years of Chemistry, 673

    ”     ”  ”  The Man of Science in Practical Affairs, 487

  Climate and Carbonic Acid. (Frag.), 621

  Colored Labor, Educated. (Frag.), 141

  Columbus, Ohio, Geology of. (Frag.), 141

  Commission in Difficulties, A. (Table), 614

  Cook, O. “Ribbon Lightning”*, 587

  Courant, M. Trade Corporations in China, 722

  Criminal Jurisprudence, Decline of, in America. G. C. Speranza, 466

  Criminology: Anarchist, A Paradoxical. C. Lombroso*, 312

       ”       Typical Criminals. Rev. S. A. Smith*, 539

  Dairy, Bacteria of the. (Frag.), 284

  “Dark Lightning.” (Frag.), 505

  Dastre, M. A. The Scavengers of the Body, 379

  Dawson, Sir William, Death of. (Frag.), 390

  Democracy, Real Problems of. F. Smith, 1

  Destruction of the Birds. (Frag.), 393

  Development of the American Newspaper. W. L. Hawley*, 186

  Diamonds, Emigrant, in America. William H. Hobbs*, 73

  Dover Meeting of the British Association. (Frag.), 135

  Dowd, C. F. Forenoon and Afternoon, 492

  Eaton, D. Cady. The Science of Art Form*, 685

  Economics: A More Excellent Way. (Table), 729

      ”      Commission in Difficulties, A. (Table), 614

      ”      Monopolies, The War against. (Frag.), 508

      ”      Pawnshops in Germany. (Frag.), 736

      ”      Pension Funds for Railroad Men. (Frag.), 734

      ”      Taxation, A State Official on Excessive. F. Smith, 645

  Economy, A Question of. (Frag.), 283

  Education: An English University. H. Stotesbury*, 14

      ”      Cross-. E. W. Scripture*, 589

      ”      Language and Life. (Table), 503

      ”      Liberal, and Democracy. (Table), 385

      ”      Literature for Children. (Frag.), 619

      ”      Plantations for Rural School Grounds. (Frag.), 393

      ”      Specialization. (Table), 125

      ”      The Environment in. (Frag.), 391

  Egyptian Exploration, Recent Years of. W. M. Flinders Petrie, 625

  Eigenmann, C. H. Blind Fishes of North America*, 473

  Electricity: Dark Lightning. (Frag.), 505

       ”       From Thales to Faraday. E. T. Lesueur, 242

  Electricity: “Ribbon Lightning.” O. Cook*, 587

  Electrolysis. H. S. Wynkoop*, 357

  Element, Another New. (Frag.), 509

  Emigrant Diamonds in America. William H. Hobbs*, 73

  Entomology: Spider Bites and “Kissing Bugs.” L. O. Howard*, 31

  Evans, E. P. A Survival of Mediæval Credulity, 577, 706

  Evolutionary Variation in the Past, Rate of. (Frag.), 285

  Exploration and Geography in 1899. (Frag.), 619

  Explosives, The Applications of. C. E. Munroe*, 300, 444

  Faith and Knowledge. (Corr.), 497

  Fiske’s Views Compared. (Corr.), 498

  Flinders, Petrie, W. M. Recent Years of Egyptian Exploration, 625

  Floating Stones. (Frag.), 735

  Food Poisoning. V. C. Vaughan, 47

   ”   Preservatives, Expert Opinions respecting. (Frag.), 736

  Ford, R. C. Malay Folklore, 239

  Forenoon and Afternoon. C. F. Dowd, 492

  Forestry, American Advances in. (Frag.), 506

     ”      in California. (Frag.), 509

  Fossiliferous Formation below the Cambrian, A. (Frag.), 139

  Funafuti Atoll, Constitution of the. (Frag.), 283

  Future of the New York Canals. (Frag.), 735

  Gegenschein, The. (Frag.), 618

  Geography and Exploration in 1899. (Frag.), 619

  Geology, A Century of. J. Le Conte, 431, 546

     ”     Fossiliferous Formation below the Cambrian. (Frag.), 139

     ”     Funafuti Atoll, Constitution of the. (Frag.), 283

     ”     of Columbus, Ohio. (Frag.), 141

  Gerhard, William P. Needed Improvements in Theater Sanitation, 84

  Giddings, F. H. Exact Methods in Sociology, 145

  Glacial Lakes in New York. (Frag.), 391

  Glangeaud, P. Wingless Birds, 254

  Halsted, B. D. Genuine Starch Factories*, 716

     ”     ”  ”  The New Field of Botany, 98

  Hawley, W. L. Development of the American Newspaper*, 186

  Heat Insulators. (Frag.), 507

  Heilprin, A. A Year’s Progress in the Klondike*, 455

     ”      ”  The Gold Sands of Cape Nome*, 633

  High Altitudes, Dangers of, for Elderly People. (Frag.), 136

  Hobbs, W. H. Emigrant Diamonds in America*, 73

  Home Burdens. (Table), 125

  Horsford, Cornelia. Vinland and its Ruins*, 160

  Howard, L. O. Spider Bites and “Kissing Bugs”*, 31

  Hydrogen, Solidification of. (Frag.), 618

  Hygiene: Bacteria of the Dairy. (Frag.), 284

  India Rubber, Artificial. (Frag.), 136

    ”      ”    Cultivation of. (Frag.), 732

  Japanese Paper. (Frag.), 389

  Jew, The Dread of the. (Frag.), 280

  Jordan, D. S. Old Rattler and the King Snake, 371

     ”    ”  ”  The Education of the Neminist, 176

  Jordan’s (President) Neminism. A. Pangloss, 494

  “Kissing Bugs” and Spider Bites. L. O. Howard*, 31

  Klondike, A Year’s Progress in the. A. Heilprin*, 455

  Language and Life. (Table), 503

  Law: Criminal Jurisprudence, Decline of, in America. G. C. Speranza,

  Le Conte, Joseph. A Century of Geology, 431, 546

  Lesquereux and Sullivant, Honors to. (Frag.), 285

  Lesueur, E. A. Electricity from Thales to Faraday, 242

  Lewis, N. P. Modern City Roadways*, 524

  Literature for Children. (Frag.), 619

  Lombroso, C. A Paradoxical Anarchist*, 312

  Malaria, The Mosquito Theory. Major R. Ross, 42

  Malay Folklore. R. C. Ford, 239

  Man of Science in Practical Affairs. F. W. Clarke, 487

  “Manuring with Brains.” (Frag.), 731

  Medalists, Royal Society. (Frag.), 620

  Medicine: Plague Antitoxin. (Frag.), 732

      ”     Rats and the Plague. (Frag.), 509

  Meteorology: Climate and Carbonic Acid. (Frag.), 621

  Mexico, Prosperity and Enterprise in. (Frag.), 283

  Mineralogy: Emigrant Diamonds in America. William H. Hobbs*, 73

  Miracle, A Thirteenth-Century. (Frag.), 394

  Monopolies, The War against. (Frag.), 508

  Montana, Alkali Soils in. (Frag.), 734

  Mosquito Theory of Malaria, The. Major R. Ross, 42

  Munroe, E. C. The Applications of Explosives*, 300, 444

  Natural History: “Salamanders” and “Salamander” Cats. N. Robinson*, 556

     ”       ”     Whales, Longevity of. (Frag.), 618

  Negro Question: Educated Colored Labor. (Frag.), 141

    ”       ”     Transplantation of a Race. N. S. Shaler, 513

  Neminism, President Jordan’s. A. Pangloss, 494

  Neminist, The Education of the. D. S. Jordan, 176

  New York Botanical Garden’s Museum. (Frag.), 733

   ”    ”  Glacial Lakes in. (Frag.), 391

  Nome, The Gold Sands of Cape. Angelo Heilprin*, 633

  Ocean Depths, Animals of the. (Frag.), 736

    ”   The Deeps of the. (Frag.), 390

  Old Rattler and the King Snake. D. S. Jordan, 371

  Ophir, The Site of. (Frag.), 736

  Oregon, Eastern Oyster Culture in. F. L. Washburn*, 233

  Ornithology: Birds, Destruction of the. (Frag.), 393

       ”       Sand Grouse, The. (Frag.), 392

       ”       Wingless Birds. P. Glangeaud, 254

       ”       Winter Birds in a City Park. J. B. Carrington*, 366

  Orton, Edward, Sketch of. (Portrait), 607

  Outdoor Improvement, For. (Frag.), 284

  Oyster Culture, Eastern, in Oregon. F. L. Washburn*, 233

  Packard, R. L. Remarkable Volcanic Eruptions in the Philippines, 374

  Pangloss, A. President Jordan’s “Neminism”, 494

  Paper, Japanese. (Frag.), 389

  Paris Exposition in 1900, The, and Congresses. (Frag.), 140

  Park-making among the Sand Dunes. (Frag.), 139

  Parliamentary Amenities Committee, The. (Frag.), 137

  Parsons, C. A. Steam Turbines and High-Speed Vessels*, 696

  Patrick, Mary M. Woman’s Struggle for Liberty in Germany, 328

  Pawnshops in Germany. (Frag.), 736

  Pearl Mussels. (Frag.), 621

  Pension Funds for Railroad Men. (Frag.), 734

  Periodicity of War. (Frag.), 735

  Perrot, G. Value of the Study of Art, 204

  Petrie, W. M. Flinders. Recent Years of Egyptian Exploration, 625

  Physical Investigation, Where it fails. (Frag.), 284

     ”     Measurements of Asylum Children. (Frag.), 138

  Physiology: Scavengers of the Body. M. A. Dastre, 379

  Plague Antitoxin. (Frag.), 732

    ”    Rats and the. (Frag.), 509

  Plantations for Rural School Grounds. (Frag.), 393

  Plant Names, English. (Frag.), 140

  Pseudo-Science: Neminist, The Education of the. D. S. Jordan, 176

  Psychology: Animals Reason? Do. Rev. E. R. Young*, 105

      ”       A Survival of Mediæval Credulity. E. P. Evans, 577

      ”       Morbid Sense of Injury, The. W. F. Becker, M. D., 596

      ”       “Warming Up.” (Frag.), 506

  Public Library, The Function of the. (Table), 616

  Putnam, Professor, on the Origins of the American Races. (Frag.), 507

  Pygmies, Amazonian, Stories of. (Frag.), 733

  Rats and the Plague. (Frag.), 509

  Religion, Is the Christian, Declining? C. A. Briggs, 423

  Religious Suicides. (Frag.), 731

  “Ribbon Lightning.” O. Cook*, 587

  Riemer, W. E. De. Agricultural Education in Foreign Countries, 218

  Rivet, M. B. Early Experiments in Air Flight, 603

  Roberts, Comptroller, on Excessive Taxation. F. Smith, 645

  Robinson, N. “Salamanders” and “Salamander” Cats*, 556

  Ross, Major R. The Mosquito Theory of Malaria, 42

  Royal Society Medalists. (Frag.), 620

  “Salamanders” and “Salamander” Cats. N. Robinson*, 556

  Sand Dunes, Park-making among. (Frag.), 139

  Sand Grouse, The. (Frag.), 292

  Sanitation: Broom, The, as a Spreader of Disease. (Frag.), 734

  Scavengers of the Body. M. A. Dastre, 379

  Science and Dogma. (Table), 728

     ”    of Art Form, The. D. Cady Eaton*, 685

     ”    South-Sea Bubbles in. J. Trowbridge, 401

     ”    The Man of, in Practical Affairs. F. W. Clarke, 487

  Scripture, E. W. Cross-Education*, 589

  Sea Water, Effect of, on Soil. (Frag.), 508

   ”    ”    on Cements, Action of. (Frag.), 733

  Serviss, G. P. Scenes on the Planets*, 337

  Shaler, N. S. The Transplantation of a Race, 513

  Simplon Tunnel, The. (Frag.), 388

  Smith, Rev. S. G. Typical Criminals*, 539

    ”    Franklin. A State Official on Excessive Taxation, 645

  Sociology: Democracy, Real Problems of. F. Smith, 1

      ”      Exact Methods in. F. H. Giddings, 145

  South-Sea Bubbles in Science. J. Trowbridge, 401

  Specialization. (Table), 125

  Spencer, H. Professor Ward on Naturalism and Agnosticism, 349

  Speranza, G. C. Decline of Criminal Jurisprudence in America, 466

  Standard Time, How Obtained. T. B. Willson, 213

  Starch Factories, Genuine. B. D. Halsted*, 716

  Steamships, Sixty Years’ Improvements in. (Frag.), 506

  Steam Turbines and High-Speed Vessels. C. A. Parsons*, 696

  Sternberg, George M., Sketch of. (Portrait), 116

  Stones, Floating. (Frag.), 735

  Stotesbury, H. An English University*, 14

  St. Prokopy, A Thirteenth-Century. (Frag.), 394

  Suicides, Religious. (Frag.), 731

  Survival of Mediæval Credulity. E. P. Evans, 577, 706

  Taxation, A State Official on Excessive. F. Smith, 645

  Theater Sanitation, Needed Improvements in. William P. Gerhard, 84

  Trolley Car, What makes the, go? William Baxter, Jr.*,  316, 408, 564

  Trowbridge, John. Latest Developments with the X Rays*, 659

      ”        ”    South-Sea Bubbles in Science, 401

      ”        ”    Wireless Telegraphy*, 59

  Vagrant Electricity, Destructive Effects of. H. S. Wynkoop*, 357

  Vaughan, V. C. Food Poisoning, 47

  Vinland and its Ruins. Cornelia Horsford*, 160

     ”    The Location of. (Corr.), 500

  Volcanic Eruptions in the Philippines, Remarkable. R. L. Packard, 374

  “Warming Up.” (Frag.), 506

  War, Periodicity of. (Frag.), 735

   ”   Spirit, The. (Table), 501

  Washburn, F. L. Eastern Oyster Culture in Oregon*, 233

  Whales, Longevity of. (Frag.), 618

  Willson, T. B. How Standard Time is Obtained, 213

  Wingless Birds. P. Glangeaud, 254

  Wireless Telegraphy. John Trowbridge*, 59

  Woman’s Struggle for Liberty in Germany. Mary M. Patrick, 328

  Wonderful Century, The. W. K. Brooks, 25

  Wynkoop, H. S. Destructive Effects of Vagrant Electricity*, 357

  X Rays, Latest Developments with. J. Trowbridge*, 659

  Young, Rev. E. R. Do Animals Reason?*, 105

  Zola’s Anthropological Traits. (Frag.), 388

  Zoölogy: Blind Fishes of North America. C. H. Eigenmann*, 473


Transcribers’ Notes

Punctuation, hyphenation, and spelling were made consistent when a
predominant preference was found in this book; otherwise they were not

Simple typographical errors were corrected; occasional unbalanced
quotation marks retained.

Ambiguous hyphens at the ends of lines were retained.

In some editions of this eBook, the superscript “e” in the address on
page 708 appears as a normal “e”, the asterism immediately following it
appears as ::, and subscripted numbers in chemical formulas appear as
normal numbers, such as H2O.

The other five issues of Volume 56 also are available at Project
Gutenberg. The eBook numbers are 44725, 47024, 47180, 47181, and 46473.

Page 635: “wofully” was printed that way.

Page 649: Missing closing quotation mark added after “howling

Page 683: “Boisbandran” is a misprint for “Boisbaudran”.

Page 731: “Adrian’s” was printed that way; may refer to “Hadrian”.

Page 734: “Pittsburg” was printed that way.

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