THE surmises and discoveries of the past twenty years have established the fact of the existence of life throughout the entire series of stratified rocks known to geologists, both sedimentary and metamorphic. When Principal Dawson published his description of the Eozoön in the Laurentian foundations, he was led to suggest the adoption of the term Eozoic in place of Azoic for all the ages older than Paleozoic, since, if life existed in the oldest formation, it must have continued to flourish in the following æons, even though evidences of its presence had not then been accumulated.
IN his ingenious and interesting work on “Primitive Marriage,” the words “ exogamy ” and “ endogamy ” are used by Mr. McLennan to distinguish the two practices of taking to wife women belonging to other tribes, and taking to wife women belonging to the same tribe.
IN my last lecture, I had occasion to place before you evidence derived from fossil remains, which, as I stated, was perfectly consistent with the doctrine of evolution, in fact, was favorable to it, but could not be regarded as the highest kind of evidence, or as that sort of evidence that we call demonstrative.
WE meet to-morrow to formally begin the biological work of this University—to commence that systematic study of animal and vegetable form and function, relationship and distribution, which we include under the names of Comparative Anatomy, ZoÖlogy, Physiology and Botany, or in the general terms Biology or Natural History.
FROM a lecture recently delivered by Prof. Tyndall before the Royal Institution, we gather the following facts in regard to that natural wonder in Scotland, which for so long remained a puzzle to all investigators. There is an unusual interest centred around its history, from the time when the country-people explained it by their crude and half-mythical theories, to the time when it became a labor of love for the untiring efforts and acute observations of scientists.
GENTLEMEN, MEMBERS AND ASSOCIATES OF THE AMERICAN CHEMICAL SOCIETY : In accordance with the plan of the American Chemical Society, I am called upon to address you this evening. I have to congratulate you on its successful establishment, and its prospect of permanent success.
TO hit off the happy medium between over- and under-work is no easy task even to those who have the necessary knowledge, on the one hand, and the liberty to arrange their own scheme of occupation, on the other. But, for one person who is injured by doing too much, I quite believe with Dr. Wilkes that many may be found who are sustaining serious damage from not having enough mental stimulus.
GENTLEMEN : It has devolved upon me this year to deliver, in accordance with prescribed custom, the introductory lecture to the course of systematic instruction upon which you are about to enter. At the outset I am free to confess that I have been not a little perplexed and troubled about what I ought most fitly to say; like many of my predecessors in the office, I have found the choice of subject beset with difficulties, and I have small hope that I can say anything to redeem the usual barrenness of the occasion.
SHARKS are usually spoken of as the most rapacious and abhorrent of sea-animals. That they are rapacious is undeniable, but why they are so is not generally considered. We will go a little into the matter. The shark, a fish of the family Squalidœ, when quite in his infant state, and only a few inches in length, exhibits a pugnacity almost without parallel for his age.
IF we investigate the condition of the ground upon which we now find the ruined settlements of a former people on this coast, it cannot fail to convince us either that all such stations had been established on sandy ground, or that the ground had been artificially changed by sand carried thither when it was rocky or hard.
THIS distinguished physicist and mathematician was born in Belfast, in June, 1824. His father, Dr. James Thomson, was a man of large capacity and culture, who studied in the Glasgow University, became head-master of the Belfast Academical Institution, and in 1832 was appointed Professor of Mathematics in the University of Glasgow. He made various improvements in mathematics, and wrote books upon education.
IN my paper on “ The Fertilization of Flowers by Insect Agency” (“ Proceedings of the American Association for the Advancement of Science,” 1875, pp. 244, 245), I say : “ On my first visit to the Rocky Mountain region, the absence of insects proved very annoying to the entomologists who accompanied me.
REFERENCE has been repeatedly made in our pages to an English Parliamentary Commission, appointed to inquire into the practice of vivisection, or experiments upon living animals, made for scientific purposes by the physiologists of that country.
THIS comprehensive and valuable work belongs in the rank of the cyclopædias, although its author has seen fit to choose for it the less ambitious title of a dictionary. It is qualified as mechanical, and answers to this description, but mechanics goes deep and sweeps wide in the field of Nature and art.
Deep-Sea Bottom Deposits.—The deep-sea bottom deposits found by the Challenger expedition are classified as follows by Mr. Murray, naturalist on the scientific staff : 1. Shore-deposits, and these are mud of a variety of colors, as blue, gray, green, red, also coral-mud and sands; 2. Globigerina ooze ; 3. Radiolarian ooze ; 4. Diatomaceous ooze ; 5. Red and gray clays.
THE chemical laboratory for female students, in the new building adjoining the Massachusetts Technological Institute, has been thoroughly fitted up, and was occupied for the first time early in November. FIVE specimens of ground coffee, chemically examined by C. H. Eddy, of Michigan University, were found to be adulterated to the extent of from 22 to 39 per cent.