THIS is an insect which is attracting much attention just now, and which has held a very prominent place in economic entomological literature during the past five years. It has occurred to me that it would not be uninteresting to the many readers of THE POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY to have the facts now known about it laid before them in a popular form, and with as little of the nomenclature of science as is consistent with precision.
JUST as a world-conqueror of ancient times, as he halts for a day in the midst of his victorious career, might long to see the boundaries of the vast territories he has subjugated more clearly defined, so that here he may levy tribute of some nation hitherto exempt, or that there he may discern some natural barrier that cannot be overcome by his horsemen, and which constitutes the true limit of his power, in like manner it will not be out of place, if Natural Science, the world-conqueror of our times, resting as on a festive occasion from her labor, should strive to define the true boundaries of her immense domain.
AN article in the April MONTHLY explained the formation of luminous images upon the principle that light moves in straight lines through any uniform transparent medium; but at the same time no agency in Nature illustrates in so many ways its capability of being turned from a direct course.
CHEMISTRY has been called the analytical science, and undoubtedly with justice in the past, since the most exact processes with which it deals are still those which go technically by the name of analysis; but, of recent years, the arts have been enriched by many perfumes, colors, and drugs, which are the results of careful and laborious construction on the part of the manufacturer, operating under chemical laws.
ELECTED, by the suffrages of your four nations, rector of the ancient university of which you are scholars, I take the earliest opportunity which has presented itself, since my restoration to health, of delivering the address which, by long custom, is expected of the holder of my office.
IN a quiet street at the "West End" of Boston, there stands a house, the window-sills and roof of which, for more than ten years, have been covered with hundreds of pieces of glass, exposed to the full force of the sun’s rays during the whole or greater portion of every day, only being protected by covers in the event of snowstorms.
SCIENCE cannot look otherwise than favorably upon every attempt to determine the quantitative relations of mind and body; and much ingenuity has been expended in the effort to arrive at a geometrical expression of it. Aristotle, "the father of Natural History," as Prof. as Prof. Agassiz calls him, speaks of an angle of the forehead to an horizontal line of the face as an indication of intelligence, and it is evident that the Greek sculptors designedly represented the superhuman attributes of the gods by an angle exceeding that of the highest human.
LOOKING back at the strange and erroneous notions which were formerly entertained of the nature and causes of insanity, and considering what little observation was made of its manifold varieties, we cannot wonder that its jurisprudence was in a very defective state.
MR. CHARLES BELT has given us, in an interesting volume, the results of his natural history studies during a residence of four years in Nicaragua. His opportunities were excellent, and he has the faculty of turning them to good account. He found the climate of the region of almost uninterrupted summer, with abundant rainfall excepting in localities on the western slopes of mountains, and consequently a great profusion of animal and vegetable forms of life.
THE rarest collections of scientific relics are often the most unvisited, and it is a somewhat singular fact, that the choicest and most instructive curiosities in many of our larger cities are not to be found in the popular museums. Thousands of people living in the city of Boston, who are familiar with the stuffed animals and astonishing wax figures in the old Boston Museum, and are accustomed to air their fancy among the respectable fossils and gorgeous tropical birds in the Museum of Natural History, have perhaps never so much as heard of the wonder-exciting collection of anatomical curiosities known as the Warren Museum.
VERY profound philosophers have lately generalized concerning the production of living forms, and the mental and moral phenomena regarded as their highest development. Mr. Herbert Spencer’s theory of Evolution purports to explain the origin of all specific differences, so that not even the rise of a Homer or a Beethoven would escape from his broad theories.
IF the discovery of chemical analysis by means of the spectrum be accepted as the most brilliant scientific achievement of the present century, the research by which the conservation of energy became established on a basis of exact quantitative experiment must be regarded as far more profound and important in its consequences.
THE celebrated Tichborne case, now closed in England, has one aspect which is as full of instruction for us as for the people among whom it occurred. The leading facts have been often printed, but, as the proceedings dragged through several years, it may be well to make a brief summary of the main facts involved in it.
As this work was announced to appear in the “International Scientific Series,” and has been withdrawn from it, a word of explanation is here desirable. In drawing up the plan of this series, it was decided that one of the books now most called for is a compendious treatise upon the science of man, based upon the intimate interactions of body and mind, or what may be termed Mental Physiology.
Relics of an Ancient Malayan Civilization.—At the November meeting of the California Academy of Sciences, photographs of curious hieroglyphics, cut in wood and found on Easter Island, were received from Mr. Thomas Croft, of Papeeti, Tahiti.
ABOUT 800 miles west of Omaha, says the Scientific American, the line of the Union Pacific Railroad crosses Green River, and the approach to the river is for a considerable distance through a cutting of from twenty to forty feet in depth, made in rock.