ASPECTS OF NATURE IN THE AFRICAN SAHARA. A SUMMER JOURNEY.
PROFESSOR ANGELO HEILPRIN
IT was, I believe, Fromentin, the eminent French scholar and art critic, who remarked that the sudden view of the Orient through the gateway of El-Kantara presented the most contrasting picture of life and Nature that was to be found anywhere on the surface of the earth.
THE extreme fluidity of our heterogeneous population is impressed upon us by every phenomenon of social life here in America. We imagine the people of Europe, on the other hand, after scores of generations of stable habitation, to have settled themselves permanently and contentedly into place.
THAT portion of California lying east of the crest of the Sierra Nevada Mountains has had a remarkable geological history. There are many phenomena to be witnessed in that region which possess much interest aside from their purely scientific aspect, and deserve to be better known than they are at present.
IT is a conspicuous fact that within the last two decades of the present century our foremost colleges and universities, with few exceptions, have been providing for the physical training of their students by the erection of gymnasia which in many instances rival the other buildings on the campus in size and cost, and by assigning the direction of the work done in them to some officer supposed to possess special qualifications for his position.
IN 1837 St. Louis was scarcely more than a small frontier town, yet in that year there was organized, through the efforts of two young men of foreign birth, what was perhaps the first society for scientific research established west of the Alleghany Mountains.
IN addition to the review of the celebrated Foreign-held Bond Case (see Popular Science Monthly, vol. lii, No. 3, pages 354— 373), decided by the United States Supreme Court in 1893, it is proposed to call attention here to additional and interesting features of this case which have not been hitherto noticed in this connection.
WERE the founders of the American Republic to return to the scene of their memorable achievements, that which would surprise them most would not be the railroad or telegraph; it would be the change in the principles and practice of government that has taken place since their day.
THE cord markings on American pottery have been usually ascribed mainly to a desire on the part of the aboriginal potter for decoration. While this may in some cases have been the purpose of the application of the fabrics, which are so distinctly seen in the casts made by Mr. Holmes, it has occurred to me that originally the decorative purpose, if there was any, was quite a secondary matter, and that the real object of the net or coarse fabric was to aid construction.
LAPLACE says, in his Exposition du Système du Monde: “ The law of attraction inversely as the square of the distance is that of emanations starting from a center. It appears to be the law of all forces the action of which is perceptible at sensible distances, as we recognize in electrical and magnetic forces.
THE thermometer, the Abbé Nollet writes, came for the first time from the hands of a peasant of North Holland. This peasant, whose name was Drebbel, was not, however, in fact, one of those coarse fellows who know of nothing but field work; he seems to have been of a diligent nature, and had apparently some knowledge of the physics of the time.
THE merits of Lord Lister’s work in the institution of antiseptic and aseptic surgery are recognized as of the very highest value to the human race, and all nations are delighted to do him honor for it. The general feeling is summarized in an English chronicle which says that for it “he is justly regarded as one of the world’s greatest benefactors.”
DEAR SIR : The ordinary reader, having neither the time nor the facilities for verifying much of what he reads, must needs take a great deal for granted. And this habit of childlike confidence applies especially to the numerous quotations he encounters, for he very naturally assumes that no writer of any pretensions and standing can be so utterly lost to all that is fair and honorable as to deliberately misquote and misrepresent a fellow-craftsman and serve him up to undeserved ridicule.
A PROFESSOR of biology in one of our leading universities has lately been discussing the question how far an acceptance of the doctrine of evolution is compatible with religious orthodoxy of the evangelical type. The answer he gives is on the whole comforting to those who desire to recognize new truth without breaking entirely away from old and cherished opinions.
WE know of no man better fitted to deal with the Scientific Aspects of Christian Evidences* than Professor Wright. He is both a man of science and a theologian ; a trusted professor in an orthodox seminary who is at the same time a fearless investigator of the geological record and of the antiquity of man—and even a sturdy advocate of Glacial man.
The Effect of Trade Unions on Individual Advance.—The growth of a country in civilization and wealth depends chiefly on the efforts of its individuals. The great advances in modern science and industry have been made by men a little ahead of their neighbors in clear-sightedness and push.
IT is very curious and almost paradoxical, says M. V. Brandicourt, reviewing in La Nature the underground temperature observations made in excavating the great Alpine tunnels, to find underneath the eternal snows physical conditions like those of tropical regions.