Obrázky na stránke
PDF
ePub

which ought to give great confidence in the efficacy of such a measure: yiz. • The country-houses and villages within the cordon, although crowded with inhabitants, were spared by the disease. The yellow fever shewed itself in these situations at distant intervals : but such cases were extremely rare, ard it is ascertained that they were not multiplied by contagion, except in two or three instances.' (P. 457.) The only occurrence of this kind, which is here given, is that of an inhabitant of the village of Sans, who died of the fever, and whose wife was seized with it two days afterward, and died also : but neither the children nor the servants, nor any of the neighbours, are stated to have caught the disease; which we should have expected, had it been of a highly contagious character.

The style of this publication is in many passages eminently French, and the language has occasionally drawn from us a smile : —- but the labours of the author form a highly valuable accession to our knowlege of yellow fever, as it has appeared in Europe; while they present a most pleasing and laudable spectacle of disinterested professional enthusiasm, sacrificing for 4 time comfort and happiness, and placing even life in peril, for the love of science and humanity. His merits cannot fail to be duly appreciated; and, if he has not the art or the opportunity to convert his professional talents to the purposes of gain, we trust that the government which he has so well served will place bim in competency, secure against the changes pf fortune.

Art. VII. Archives des Découvertes, &c.; i.e. Archives of Dis.

coveries and new Inventions in the Sciences, Arts, and Manufactures, both in France and in foreign Countries, during the Year 1822. With a Summary of the principal Products of French Industry; a List of Certificates of Inventions, Improvements, and Importations, granted by the Government, during the same Year; and Notices of the Prizes proposed or adjudged by different learned Societies, French and Foreign, for the Encouragement of Science and the Arts. 8vo. pp. 559. Paris. 1823. Imported by Treuttel and Co. Price 10s.6d. s we have more than once adverted to this useful annual

repertory, it would be unnecessary now to explain its general objects, or the plan on which it is conducted.* The materials of the present volume, like those of its precursors, are distributed into the two great divisions of Science and

* See Review, N. S. vol. Ixiv. p. 524. ; lxxi. p. 536. ; and Ixxvii, p. 484.

Arts,

Arts, between which the precise line of demarcation is not always very obvious. : In a part of the arrangement, too, we observe Zoology and Botany aukwardly interjected between Geology and Mineralogy, and Optics between Electricity and Meteorology; which last, again, is removed to an immeasurable distance from Geology. The various subjects, however, are generally well selected, and stated not only with perspicuity and conciseness, but with an uniform regard to correctness and appropriation of style. The amount of information derived from British sources is more ample and important than heretofore: but the report of proceedings in other countries, with the exception of France, is still very scanty and meagre. Yet so diversified and multiplied are the contents of the publication, that we cannot pretend to exhibit even a bare enumeration of them. Besides, many of the articles are already so compressed as to be unsusceptible of more reduced analysis; and we purposely overlook those passages which have been extracted from British journals, or which are easily accessible to the English reader: especially as several of them have been already submitted to our cognizance,' and others may come to be considered in the regular progress of our critical labors. Under these circumstances, then, it may suffice to glance at a few of the topics, as illustrative of the character of the work, or as conveying new or useful intelligence to our readers.

In the geological department, we find a distinct statement of M. Ferussac's researches into the formation of tertiary soils, from which he has been led to infer a change of temperature, and of the level of the waters, as well as the extinction of many sorts of animals and plants. We meet likewise with descriptions of newly discovered caverns in America, and of a remarkable subterraneous accumulation of ice on the northwest coast of that continent. A solitary instance is recorded of a remnant of Chæmorops humilis, entombed in sand-stone, near Lausanne. — M. Moreau de Jonnés, having examined the repository in which the human skeleton was detected in Guadaloupe, is convinced that it is of recent origin; formed, as elsewhere on the coast of that island, by the agglutination of fragments of madrepores, and of other calcareous morsels, rejected by the tide.

Zoology is introduced by a reference to M. Delalande's examination of the skulls and skeletons of various natives of the south of Africa, which indicate peculiarities of organization, and, according to phrenological notions, an inferiority with respect to intellect.

The same indefatigable traveller has added five tortoises to those already known; has communi

cated some interesting observations on the entomology of Africa ; and has prepared, often on the burning sand, or in the recesses of the forest, 122. animal skeletons : some of which were of great dimensions, particularly that of a whale, measuring 78 feet in length, stranded in False Bay. In the comparatively short space of two years, he has transmitted to Europe 19,405 articles, belonging to 1620 species of animals.

Mention is made of a herd of swine, in the state of Vermont, drawn up in the form of a triangle, two sides of which consisted of the largest, stoutest, and the best furnished with tusks, while the base and the centre were composed of the young. This defensive attitude had been assumed in consequence of the advance of a wolf, which was gored to death, and the party then broke up.- Mr. Kirkoff, a Russian officer, when in the neighbourhood of Bhering's island, had a near and an anxious peep of a sea-snake, with a red body, and huge eyes. Acephalocystis racemosa, a new species of hydatid, and found in the human uterus, is announced by MM. Desormeaux and Cloquet ; and the latter also describes a new species of Ophiostoma, nine inches long, and only half a line in its greatest thickness. It was rejected from the stomach of an individual, who had been liable, for some years, to apoplectic seizures : but they ceased from the period of his getting rid of such a troublesome inmate.

We extract the ensuing passage the more willingly, because it is quite in accordance with information which we have received from very respectable quarters.

On the Properties of the Guaco, a Sort of Climber, or Pliant Willow. By M. Leguevel. This shrub, which chiefly occurs in the warm and temperate regions of the viceroyalty of Santa-, towards the 45th degree of north latitude, not only possesses the property of neutralizing the venom of the rattle-snake, and other serpents whose bites prove fatal in the course of some minutes, but it may be employed as a prophylactic ; insomuch that several doses of the juice of the pounded leaves, suitably administered, will render a person invulnerable to the bite of these reptiles.

• M. Leguevel carefully describes the botanical characters of this plant, which he has himself studied in Martinique, whither it was transported in 1814; and he quotes several facts, attested by pers sons worthy of credit and by the local authorities, which prove that persons bitten by the most venomous serpents have, by the juice of the guaco, been saved from any injurious consequences. He also informs us that he personally ascertained the extraordinary effects of the guaco.'

Enothera' tetraptera has the property of flowering very rapidly, and only when the sun has nearly gone down. Its flowers are of a dazzling whiteness, and close with a sort of APP. Rev. VOL. C.

LI

convul

convulsive contraction on the proboscis of the large moth, which seeks to rifle its sweets, but is detained in captivity.

M. Dumège has discovered at Sost, in the valley of Barousse, and in the department of the Upper Pyrenées, a quarry of statuary marble, in various respects superior to that of Carrara, and possessing the delicate semi-transparency so much prized by the sculptor. - M. Brard has applied the crystallization and efflorescence of salts to determine the resisting powers of different kinds of stone to the agency of frost; and he has extended the same principle to similar trials of bricks and cements. M. Schoolcraft announces the existence of enormous masses of pure, native, and highly brilliant copper, on the banks of Lake Superior, in North America.

Professor Howard's alleged production of heat from the collection of the solar rays, in the focus of a concave mirror, is ingeniously explained by M. Pictet, on the principle of the accidental radiation of caloric from the earth's surface. - The recent multiplication of ice-houses in North America has afforded opportunities of studying the formation and structure of ice; of ascertaining that the congelation of each night, in pools and standing waters, is regularly represented by a distinct layer, which decreases in thickness as it becomes lower in the series, and of shewing that, were it not for this lastmentioned circumstance, the

mass would, in ordinary winters, acquire a diameter greater than the summer-heat could dissolve. — From various experiments, M. Pouillet has arrived at the conclusion that, whenever a liquid wets a solid, heat is disengaged; and that this phænomenon is more sensibly marked when the solid absorbs the liquid. — The suspension of clouds in the atmosphere, or, in other words, of bodies more dense than the medium in which they are sustained, is attributed to the influence of an ascending current of heated air from the earth ; which, possessing more energy in summer than in winter, will account for the greater elevation of the clouds in the former season. — M. Breguet's metallic thermometer, as described by M. Prony, should indicate the changes of atmospheric temperature with great sensibility and delicacy, but its liability to derangement renders it unfit for ordinary purposes, Signor Scaramucci, of Florence, has invented a machine which he terms aero-dromo, or aero-naviglio, and which he declares to be capable of ascending, or descending, of stopping, or of moving horizontally; and which may be navigated in the air, for a month, without intermission. Its complement of aeronauts is six; and it is calculated to convey twenty individuals, with their requisite stock of provisions. Á

short winter,

short time must shew whether all this is sober truth or a flight of imagination.

Among the Chemical papers mentioned, is one by M. Serulas, describing a fulminating mixture, by which gunpowder may be ignited under water. - To the same observer we are indebted for the detection of arsenic in most of the pharmaceutical preparations of antimony. - A singular case of a female, thirty-six years of age, who vomited bezoardic concretions, is stated by M. Braconnot. — M. Morin, in his examination of the Smelt, found phosphorus to be present in its composition, in the same state of combination in which it occurs in the milt of fishes, and in the matter of the brain. His analysis of the same species yielded albumen, mucus, osmazome, hydrochlorate of potass, the phosphates of potass, magnesia, iron, and lime, carbonate of lime, an oily matter, phosphorus, and animal fibre. - M. Vogel seems to have established that the volatile oil of bitter almonds, even when deprived of the hydrocyanic acid, is deleterious.- MM. Payen and Chevalier, in a memoir on the cultivation of the Hop, have proved that all the qualities, which that plant imparts to our malt-liquor, reside in the yellow mealy powder of the scaly cones, and not in the cones themselves; and that, consequently, a superior beverage is prepared by the exclusion of the latter from the brewing process. — The earth pistachio, Arachis hypogæa, Lin., a native of South America, which is now cultivated in the Landes of Bordeaux, in the neighbourhood of Toulouse, Montpellier, and Toulon, yields a large quantity of oil, which, for many purposes, is superior to that of olives. - Professor Zimmerman, of Giessen, has discovered that all the aqueous atmospheric substances, as dew, snow, rain, and hail, contain meteoric iron, combined with nickel. Rain usually contains salt, and a new organic substance, composed of hydrogen, oxygen, and carbon, which he calls pysine. These same combinations are found in meteorolites, which are supposed to be rather of a terrestrial than of a cosmical origin.'

In the case of a house in Toulouse struck by lightning, an iron peg, and the needles of a tailor who was at work at the time, were highly magnetized; and we believe that similar effects are produced by lightning more frequently than we are aware. - M. Ampere's experiments tend powerfully to confirm the conclusions of Oersted and Sir H. Davy relative to the identity of the magnetic and electric fluid. - According to the observations of M. Hansteen, the magnetic intensity of the earth is subject to a diurnal variation ; decreasing from the first hours of the morning till ten or eleven o'clock, in L1 2

« PredošláPokračovať »