« EelmineJätka »
construed as expressing approval by Sir Michael bud of ash (Fraxinus excelsior), 2-inch object, and Hicks-Beach of experiments on animals, or in any spot; trans-section of leaf-bud of sycamore (Acer way affecting the exercise by the Secretary of State pseudoplatanus), 2-inch object; trans-section of ovary of his discretionary powers to grant or withhold a of Iris Germanica, 2-inch object. Mr. Flatters is a vivisection licence to the proposed institute.
working man-one of the ardent and enthusiastic It is proposed to erect an observatory on top of
working-men naturalists for which Lancashire has Mont Blanc. The idea originated with M. Janssen,
always been famous. We hope, therefore, the fact of wbo stayed on the mountain some time last summer
our calling attention to his capital slides will be a for the purpose of making meteorological observations.
source of encouragement. In conjunction with M. Eiffel (of tower fame), and with the support of M. Bischoffsheim, Prince Roland
ZOOLOGY. Bonaparte, and Baron Alfred de Rothschild, he has now elaborated a plan which is as daring as the A LINK WITH THE TRILOBITES.-Four or five sea Jungfrau railway. The observatory is to be entirely scorpions have recently been placed in two of the of iron, and is to have a length of eighty-five feet and tanks in the fish-house at the Zoological Gardens. a breadth of twenty feet. The iron roof is to have The creature is better known as King Crab (Limulus), the spherical form of an ironclad turret, which the but the first name is more appropriate. It is really a construction will much resemble. The erection of marine representation of the scorpions in the insectsuch a building on the highest point of Mont Blanc house, and is not a crab at all ; but unlike them it naturally involves thorough preliminary studies, with cannot sting, although the long spine in which its which a Zürich engineer experienced in works on body terminates is the precise equivalent of the high mountains has been charged by M. Eiffel and venomous sting of the scorpion. If the sea scorpions M. Janssen.
find their surroundings sufficiently congenial, they We deeply regret having to record the death of may, perhaps, lay eggs and hatch out young. This Mr. D. Mackintosh, F.G.S., whose work on “The would be a very desirable event, for the young of Scenery of England and Wales,” is well known. It this animal are curiously like some of the extinct a pioneer work on the subject, although it
Trilobites. ascribed everything to marine denudation. Mr. Mackintosh was also well known as a geological lecturer.
BOTANY. “ TECHNICAL EDUCATION" is all in the air. The The Ti PLANT OF TAHITI.-In an interesting official people discussing it remind us of the Little work entitled “ Tahiti, the Garden of the Pacific,” Room at Jerusalem.
by Dora Hort, published by T. Fisher Unwin, there A new Flux for iron has been brought out under
appears the following account of some peculiar the name of Stephanite. It includes aluminum with
properties of the above plant. Perhaps some of the the iron in a chemical combination, and is said to
readers of SCIENCE-Gossip may be able to furnish a render the iron harder than the hardest steel.
satisfactory explanation of the power possessed by
this plant in deadening the heat emitted from fire. M. Bouroux has found there are five species of
"The leaf of the Tii possesses the mysterious plant fungi, and three of bacteria present during the
power of quelling the heat usually emitted from fermentation of bread. The bacteria operate on the
flames of fire. At an early period of Tahitian history gluten.
this property was only known to the idolatrous priests, We are sorry to record the death of an early who made use of their knowledge to assist in the contributor to our columns, that of the genial natural. performance of miracles which would not bear too ist Dr. Thos. Allcock of Manchester, in his sixty-ninth close scrutiny. Standing by the marais, they held year.
branches of the Tii plants, which rendered them
imperviable to the fiery tongue of flame by which MICROSCOPY.
they were surrounded. Captain Blackett related to
me a ceremony he had witnessed some years preNew SLIDES.—Mr. Abraham Flatters, of Open- viously at one of the Leeward Islands. A procession shaw, Manchester, sends us four botanical slides, of natives bearing branches of the plant in question, which for clean-cut sections and definite staining and waved them from side to side as they walked with good mounting are among the best we have examined. bare feet and legs over red-hot stones, and through All botanical students are aware that a well-mounted fiery flames without any injury whatever to their naked section of the organs of plants is worth a thousand limbs. Captain Blackett, after having watched their pictures of the same, as regards their power of im- mode of proceeding, was convinced that waving the pression. Mr. Flatter's slides are as follows: section branches they carried counteracted in some way the of the ovary of Lilium croceum, 2-inch object; leaf- effect of the heat, which he undertook to test in his
own person. Divesting himself of shoes and stockings, he tucked up his trousers, and imitating the others with regard to the Tii plant, he passed in a similar manner through the fire without experiencing the slightest inconvenience from the flames, which he said played about his bare legs.”—7. F. Cranswick.
MERCURIALIS PERENNIS.– At page 179 of SCIENCE-Gossip for the present month, Mercurialis perennis is written of as “sometimes eaten as a vegetable,” surely this is a mistake, the plant is very poisonous, and it is well to caution your readers against eating it ; the plant eaten as spinach is the Mercury Goose-Foot, Chenopodium Bonus Henricus, belonging to the order Chenopodiaceæ, which contains many edible species, as orach, spinach, and beet.7. Jenner Weir.
ABNORMAL SCABIOUS.—I enclose a specimen of scabious herewith, as it has none of the usual compressed central florets on its disk. It may be useful as an example of defective development.R. Ashington Bullen.
VAR. OF LILIUM AURATUM. -Amongst a large number of flowers of Lilium auratum last year, I saw one which struck me as being rather peculiar ; instead of the stigmas and styles being united in their whole length, there was one style with its stigma distinctly separate, and the other two had their styles separate but were united by their stigmas. Is such a case, may I ask, of rare occurrence? I preserved the specimen in spirit. While writing this may I ask what is the best book for a beginner on the study of worms (Vermes) ?- Eldon Pratt.
ARCHÆOLOGY AND PLANT TRADITIONS.-In an address given during an excursion of the Essex Field Club on August 8, Dr. J. E. Taylor made some remarks, to which we invite the attention of archæological botanists. Speaking of their folklore, he said that many of the traditions concerning them were the common property of Norwegian, Danish, German, French, English, Spanish, Russian, Hungarian, and other countries, and he expressed his belief that these traditions were of Aryan origin, older even than the evolution of European languages, and that they were possibly distributed all over Europe during the great Aryan emigration. In this way he connected the popular names and folklore of common plants with ethnological history.
constructed these camps? why were they formed ? and what was the condition of the country at the time? Badbury was puzzling. The Rings consist of three bold and almost perfect embankments and three ditches; they are circular, cover eighteen acres, and have two entrances, facing respectively east and west. The innermost ring is often said to be Keltic, the middle Roman, and the external Saxon or AngloSaxon ; the extreme circumference is 1,738 yards. Of the history of Badbury nothing is really known except that, according to the “Saxon Chronicle” of A.D. 901, the year of Alfred's death, his son and successor, Edward the Elder, held it, while his kinsman and rival Ethelwald was posted at Wimborne. Ethelwald, after stating that he would either live or die at Wimborne, stole off by night to join the Danes and Mercians in Northumbria. There is no evidence that Badbury was the Mons Badonicus of the early chroniclers. Few remains of interest have been found at or near Badbury itself, with the exception of some coins-one, however, a beautiful gold one, pieces of pottery, three swords, and a few bones. The objection to Badbury, or rather the middle ring, being a Roman encampment is that the Romans usually constructed nearly square camps, with four entrances, one in the middle of each of the four faces ; but it did not follow that the Romans might not have occupied Badbury for a time, utilising the fortifications which they found here. To leave Badbury and give a glance at other equally huge earthworks in the neighbourhood of Wimborne, their enormous size and the vast labour implied in throwing them up, must not be overlooked. One could not avoid the conclusion that the population of the district must have been very large, not that of the whole country, a widely different matter, but that of the districts in which the camps are formed. General Pitt Rivers agrees in this opinion, and believes that in an age when much of the land was swampy, or covered with dense and almost impenetrable primæ. val forests, dry downs would offer great attractions of residence, and that the inhabitants would need only to protect exposed parts, the forests or the rivers and swamps sufficiently defending the other sides. Some light, Dr. Crespi concluded, was thrown on the inhabitants of the region by the discoveries made by General Pitt Rivers ; most of the skeletons recently exhumed at Rotherly being exceedingly small, the males averaging 5ft. 1.5in., the females 4ft. gin., while the Anglo-Saxon skeletons at Winkelbury average for males 5ft. 69 in., and the females 5ft. 2'3 in. Some bronze age skeletons found by General Pitt Rivers were of greater stature than the Anglo-Saxon ones at Winkelbury. The almost entire absence of round-headedness showed that a Roman strain was rare among the people of the district. To sum up, so little is at present known of the conditions of life and of the people of the region, where most of the huge camps, which give such interest to the district, were constructed, that it is necessary to speak with very great reserve, so that there is still the widest possible latitude for the imagination. It is consequently not astonishing that the highest authorities do not agree. One thing is clear, that many of these immense fortifications were thrown up after the departure of the Romans, and the proof of this important fact is that vast numbers of Roman coins are found in the embankments often many feet below the top of them, so that they must have been thrown up with the earth with which the fortifications are made ; others may be far more ancient than Roman times. Future explorations may lead to important discoveries, particularly at Badbury, which has in great measure escaped the researches of Archäologists.
NOTES AND QUERIES. ROMANO-British Camps.--At a meeting of the Bournemouth Natural History Society at Badbury Rings, near Wimborne, on June 27th, 1891, Dr. Crespi, of Wimborne, said the whole neighbourhood was deeply interesting to the antiquary ; Badbury, the Castle Hill at Cranborne, and Dudsbury were a few of the most interesting. Several questions of importance would call for brief enquiry. These were : Who
SQUIRRELS IN WINTER. - To doubt that the squirrel hibernates, because it is not infrequently seen abroad in the winter, appears to me rather like questioning whether bats are strictly nocturnal, on the strength of the few notes recently inserted in SCIENCE-Gossip relative to their flying in sunlight. This last occurrence, by the way, is far more common than any of the correspondents who have sent their observations, seem to suppose. I believe no summer passes without my seeing instances of it. At times, á bat will be noticed for several successive days, hawking round the same spot in the brightest hours of sunshine. As to the squirrel, I am well aware that he may be seen in every month of the year ; but the marked absence of regularlity in his winter appearances can only, I think, be explained by still considering him to a certain extent a hibernant. In a wooded country frequented by squirrels, a person who has observed their habits can visit them any day he pleases throughout the summer months, with little fear of failing to find them at home. The litter which a squirrel makes under the tree wherein his daily meal is despatched is quite prodigious ; so that even a casual walk through the grove tells you in what trees squirrels have been recently feeding ; and where the fragments are freshest, a squirrel will be found. But of course you must go at his meal-time. The hour of his afternoon repast is from 3.30 to 4.30, and during that period the squirrel's acquaintance can be cultivated ad libitum. Day after day you will find him in the same tree-a larch if it be August, a beech if it be September--cr ng the cones of the one or the mast of the other, and pelting the fragments down upon you as you sprawl on the sward beneath. I have spent many a pleasant half-hour in receipt of these attentions. In winter, you come across the squirrel by chance, or stumble upon traces of a squirrel feast (under Scotch firs generally) fresh enough to inform you that a squirrel has been there not longer ago than yesterday afternoon. But
go the spot to-morrow, and you will find the very same patch of fragments, only less fresh ; not in the least augmented by further chippings. Or go where you met the squirrel himself, and if you expect to meet him again you are more than likely to be disappointed. Why, then, cannot the squirrel be traced in winter as well as in summer? I think we may answer, because the squirrel only occasionally wakes up to life in the winter, and the fact that he has dined once in such or such a tree is no indication of a likelihood of his returning thereto. Yet I am far from questioning that these frequent interruptions of the squirrel's torpidity may indicate a gradual dying out of the hibernatory habit. If I may speak from the local conditions of my own neighbourhood, where squirrels for the past twelvemonth have been somewhat common (result of some spontaneous migration) no animal could have less need to hibernate. Abundance of food surrounds him at all seasons. Indeed, it is worth mentioning that at least one favourite squirrel-food, the larch-cone, is never out of season. I can give a curious proof of this. During the latter part of last August, 1890, all the squirrels about here seemed to be feeding exclusively on the green larch-cones. It is now August 5th, and the squirrels are nearly all feeding on the old brown larchcones, remnants of the same crop that afforded them food a year ago. This is not because the green cones are not ready ; for as long ago as July 12, the squirrels about Bray, Co. Wicklow, were devouring the green larch-cones, and the cones here are as forward as those at Bray. It is therefore plain that one crop of larch-cones continues to be good feeding for more than a whole year. The squirrel, of course, will at
frequent seasons desert the larches for other forms of food ; during the whole of September, and greater part of October he seems to subsist entirely on beechmast; in winter he loves haws and pine-cones, in spring the tender shoots of the spruce. But, whenever he is hard up, he has an unfailing friend in the larch ; and therefore, if the squirrels in this part of Ireland have need to hibernate, it is from some different cause than that usually assigned, the scarcity of food.-C. B. Moffat, Ballyhyland, Co. Wexford.
GRATES IN THE Open Air.-F. Y. wishes to ask the scientific reason for exposing hot-house grapes to the night air, for the purpose of colouring them.
CONCHOLOGICAL Society's JOURNAL.-As a member of the Conchological Society, may I venture to suggest that the numbers are much damaged for neat binding by the quantity of glue which is used on the backs; they are pinned as well, and in most cases the pins would be sufficient, and ensure neat binding afterwards. I bind my own magazines (as an amateur), therefore I speak practically on the subject. --Mary Heitland,
OPTICAL EFFECT.—The “black branched object which has been popularly likened to the ramifications of the brain" is known as the “figure of Purkinje." Besides being produced in the manner described by H. J. I., the phenomena may be quite as easily noticed by bringing a slight pressure to bear on the eyeball. It is purely a mechanical effect, and is easily explained. Rays of light falling on the eye impinge on the anterior part of the retina, pierce the layer of ramifying fibres of the optic nerve, and the whole strata of the retina, and then act on the bacillary layer, which is composed of minute structures termed rods and cones. In the experiment described by H. J. I., the vision becomes yellowish-red, and is peculiarly marked by dark ramifications which really indicate the branches of the retinal artery. The eye, it will be noticed is directed to the darkest part of the room, while the candle is so held that the light falls on the retina at a slanting angle. This shows up the “ branched object,” which is none other than the ramifying blood vessels intervening between the rays of light, and the bacillary or sensitive layer behind. The experiment depends entirely for its success on a slow movement of the candle. This stopped, the figures disappear.-Fred. H. Davey.
NOTICES TO CORRESPONDENTS.
To CORRESPONDENTS AND EXCHANGERS.-As we now publish SCIENCE-Gossip earlier than formerly, we cannot undertake to insert in the following number any communications which reach us later than the 8th of the previous month.
To ANONYMOUS Querists.-We must adhere to our rule of not noticing queries which do not bear the writers' names.
To DealERS AND OTHERS.-We are always glad to treat dealers in natural history objects on the same fair and general ground as amateurs, in so far as the "exchanges" offered are fair exchanges. But it is evident that, when their offers are simply DISGUISED ADVERTISEMENTS, for the purpose of evading the cost of advertising, an advantage is taken of our gratuitous insertion of “exchanges,” which cannot be tolerated.
We request that all exchanges may be signed with name (or initials) and full address at the end.
SPECIAL Note.-There is a tendency on the part of some exchangers to send more than one per month. We only allow this in the case of writers of papers.
To our Recent EXCHANGERS.-We are willing to be helpful to our genuine naturalists, but we cannot further allow dis. guised Exchanges like those which frequently come to us to appear unless as advertisements.
C. PITHER.-Soak the furniture well with common petroleum. The objects are undoubtedly eggs of some species of inite. Sopping with petroleum is the most likely thing we know to get rid of them. We shall be glad to hear if any of our readers know of anything more insecticidal.
H. L. T.-SCIENCE-Gossip has a large circulation outside the United Kingdom-larger than that of any other scientific journal.
A. FLATTERS.-We have received your two excellent mounts of transverse sections of Lilium croceum, and leaf-bud of ash. Both are very instructive specimens.
JOHN COOKSON.-"The Naturalist's Gazette" was published by Mr. Allen, 4 Ave Maria Lane, E.C., subs. id. monthly. It is now united with “The Garner.”
R. M. W.-The worms are not the young of the common earth-worm, but of the species known as “ brandlings."
H. G. SADLER. - Dr. Aveling's book will help you. Messer's “New Method of Diagnosis” (Allen & Co., Waterloo Place) will help you more.
K. A. D.-We shall be pleased to have your paper.
A SUBSCRIBER.- By some ineans your flower was not enclosed. We have waited, thinking it had been inadvertently lest out. The best means of verifying grasses and sedges would be to consult a herbarium at some museum; or, failing that, Sowerby's “Botany,” at some free reference library.
Rev. B. WHITELOCK AND D. H. S. STEWART.-We are much obliged for the abnormal examples of Geum and Salir alba sent. They are very suggestive objects.
G. E. M.-We frequently get applications for another “ General Index” of Science-Gossip, since the last issued in 1876. The expense, however, is too great unless we were guaranteed a number. Although we are aware there is no Cyclopædia of Natural History in the world equal to the twenty-five volumes of SCIENCE-Gossip, all purchasers do not bind the volumes, and therefore a "General Index” hangs.
H. E. GRISET.-Stark's “ British Mosses." (coloured plates), price 7s. 6d., and Dr. M. C. Cooke's " British Fungi” (coloured plates), price 6s.
R. COUPAR.-Apply to Messrs. Macmillan for Professor Marshall-Ward's book on the “ Diseases of Timber." It is published, we believe, in the “Nature Series," price 28. 6d.
What offers in British shells, or others ?-Mrs. Heitland, The Priory, Shrewsbury.
BOTANICAL slides wanted, mounted sections, &c., useful for class work. A packet of good unmounted material from New Zealand will be given in exchange for each slide.-W. A. Gain, Tuxford, Newark.
WANTED, foreign stamps in exchange for minerals, fossils, shells, and botanical objects, &c.-F. Cartwright, 20 Eldon Street, C.-on-M., Manchester.
WANTED, side-blown eggs-skylark, tits, rooks, hawks, warblers, and many others, in exchange for rare species, some in clutches with nests, and with data.-1. Ellison, Steckton, Keoghley.
OFFERED, "Northern Microscopist,” eighteen pumbers, July 1882, to December 1883 ; also "Selborne Magazine," first eighteen numbers, January 1888, to June 1889, all perfect and clean as published. Wanted, other scientific books, or good micro. material, or slides.-Amos, 17 Alfred Street, Bath.
Can offer rare British shells in return for coal ferns, good rock and diatom mounts, rare stamps, stamp_album, or books on natural history, in good condition.-T. E. Sclater, Bank Street, Teignmouth, Devonshire.
Will give 150 polished geological cabinet specimens of Devonian corals and sponges, valued from 1s. and upwards, for a good microscope, with its appliances. Will also exchange similar specimens for opera-glass, or a secondhand old-fashioned watch that will keep time.-A. J. R. Sclater, M.C.S., 23 Bank Street, Teignmouth.
Will exchange the following sets of eggs for others not in collection : two sets missel thrush, each containing four eggs ; two sets kestrels, four and five eggs; two sets common sandpipers, four eggs; and three eggs of common gull.-J. Hume, 34 Burdon Terrace, Newcastle-on-Tyne.
WANTED, offers for a few Canadian silurian fossils, as well as some English from chalk, Aint, &c.; also Nicholson's “Palæ. ontology," Mantell's "Wonders of Geology," and Woodward's “Mollusca." - J. A. Floyd, 5 Hospital Road, Bury-St.Edmunds.
What offers for a number of text and guide-books for the London University Matriculation Examination. List sent.H. P., 103 Camden Street, London, N.W.
Glazed mahogany insect cabinet, eight drawers, quite new, cost 50S.
Will exchange to value for British birds' eggs, especially sea birds; clutches preferred.-W. H. Killick, Eastbourne, Midhurst.
Wanted, glass-topped boxes, round or square, suitable for mounting fragile and small shells.-Thomas W. Reader, 178 Hemingford Road, Barnsbury, London, N.
DUPLICATES.-Suspecta, loniceræ (bred), ulmata, arcuosa ; also fine varieties of guillemot eggs. Desiderata : eggs, shells, and insects.-W. Hewett, 12 Howard Street, York.
Wanted, perfect specimens of mole-crickets, field-crickets, and wood-crickets, also blatta and British.caught locusts. Duplicates numerous, including P. viridissima, P. brachy. pterus, L. biguttatus, Sympetrum vulgatum, P. machaon, L. sinapis, L. rhamni, A. adippe, paphia, Selene euphrosyne, S. semele, C. typhon, N. lucina, E. Jacobaa, V. atalanta, V. io, V. cardui, &c. - W. Harcourt Bath, Ladywood, Birmingham.
OFFERED, accumulation of dried plants, including Thalict. saxat., Seseli liban., Drosera angl., Clal. marisc., Monstr. hypo., Aspid. thelyp:, &c. Wanted, ŚCIENCE-Gossip for 1888, 1890, and 1891, books, or offers for whole lot.-G. H. Bryan, Thornlea, Cambridge.
I shall be pleased to communicate with anyone interested in conchology.-G. E. Leville, Cross Bank, Waterhead, Oldham.
EXCHANGES. Wright's "Animal Life," Woodward's "Geology of England and Wales," Lyell's “Student's Geology," Mantell's "Excursions,” offered in exchange for silver coins, &c.-W. J. Weston, Beckley, Sussex.
WANTED, unmounted material, diatoms, forams, polycistines, &c., in exchange for choice micro-slides of every description. Foreign correspondence solicited.-Suter, 5 Highweek Road, Tottenham, Middlesex.
OFFERED, South African bird-skins of any order, in fine condition, correctly named and with data, in exchange for named bird-skins of any country but South Africa.-J. G. Brown, North End, Port Elizabeth, South Africa.
OFFERED, Prosopeas holosericum, Opeas clavulinum, Buliminus glandulus, B. tenuiliratus, B. camarotus, Clausilia corticina, Pupina compacta, Lagodiscus ciliferum, L. trochulus, Cyclophorus Zollingeri, Opistophorus corniculum, Cyclotus opalinus, Leptopoma ostrea, Amphidromus furcillatus, from java, in exchange for foreign helices, &c.-G. K. Gude, 5 Giesbach Road, Upper Holloway, N.
NATURAL history specimens. Numerous herbarium speci. mens of rare British alpine flowering plants, mosses, ferns, lichens, marine algæ, &c., or land and freshwater shells and other natural history specimens for exchange. Further particulars sent to any one willing to exchange foreign land shells for the afore-mentioned.-T. Rogers, M.C.S., 27 Oldham Road, Manchester.
British and European lepidoptera wanted, especially noce tual. Will give in exchange fine and large North American butterflies and moths. —Chas. S. Westcott, box 167, Merchantville, N.J., Camden Co., U.S.A.
WANTED, fossils from the Stonesfield slate, Lower Oolite, especially echini and cidaris. Offered, fossils from Gault, Thanet sands, &c.-Fredk. Stanley, M.C.S., Margate.
WANTED, living specimens of dragonflies, larvæ, ova, &c. : also parts of insects, wings, &c. State what required in exchange to-H. D. G., 16 Wandle Road, Croydon, Surrey.
A Member of the Conchological Society wishes to correspond with collectors residing abroad. Good series of duplicates, including many North-West American. Lists exchanged.H. L., 270 Uttoxeter Road, Derby.
Offered, SCIENCE-Gossip for 1887-91, to date, unbound, clean, “Tales of the Wars," Tacitus " Annals," " Anecdotes of Napoleon,' Bret Harte's
0. W. Holmes' "Poems," " Alton Locke," "Hypatia,” " Dombey and Son,”. “Vanity Fair,” “Old Mortality," "Tom Brown's Schooldays," “Chambers' Miscellany," and others. Wanted, British eggs or butterflies.
Send lists to - Hollis, Manthorpe Road, Grantham.
OFFERED, fine specimens of Donat scortum, from Burma.
BOOKS, ETC., RECEIVED FOR NOTICE. “The Right Hand: Left-Handedness,” by Sir Daniel Wilson (London: Macmillan). -"The Telescope," by Joseph W. Williams (London: Swan Sonnenschein & Co.). -"The Microscope."-"The American Monthly Micro. Journal.”—“American Naturalist."-"Canadian Entomologist."-"The Natu. ralist.”—The Botanical Gazette."--" The Gentleman's Magazine."-"The Midland Naturalist."-"The Essex Naturalist. -“The Garner and Naturalist's Gazette."-"Feuille des Jeunes Naturalistes.”—“Mediterranean Naturalist.”—“Journal of Microscopy," &c., &c.
COMMUNICATIONS RECEIVED UP TO THE 12TH ULT. FROM: R. C. P.-A. B.-J. W.-H. D. G.-W. J. W.-T. W. S.W. T. L.-F. G. K.-E. P.-C. S. H.--Ť. R.-E. K. G.H. D.-U. J. W.-F. S.-A. F.-W. H. B.-T. E. LH. W.P.-C.N.-J. M. N. C.-J. H.-J. A. F.-W. H. M. K. -T. W. R.-M. E. P.-A. V.-D. K.-H. L. T.-J. H. G. -W. H.-M. B. W.-A. S. T.-J. W. H.-S. L. M.-J. A.C. P. G.-M. B. M.-J. W. P.-R. G. M.-M. D.-T. J. W. -A. V.--C. M. B.-J. H. G.-J. E.-F, C.-W. A. G.M. H.-F. H. D.-C. D. R.-H. L. T.-A. H.-J. F. C.W. W.-R. A. B.-T. E. S.-A. J. R, S.-&c., &c.
EMBERSHIP of a
and if in the remarks which follow there is nothing strikingly novel, or eminently sensational, I would venture to remind my readers of a statement to be found somewhere in Hannah Moore's works, to the effect that though the office of a reminder is more humble than that of an instructor, it is often quite as necessary.
One of the first things we are prone to overlook is that our rights, as members of a society, are indissolubly linked to certain definite obligations. In this respect we do not differ from the general body of mankind. All men insist more strenuously on the maintenance of their rights, or what they take to be their rights, than they do on the observance of the obligations which those rights inevitably imply. Take the simple instance of the right to speak freely in support of any particular view ; it carries with it the obligation to be deferential, and observant of that degree of courtesy which is perfectly consistent with the most zealous advocacy of our opinions. I write with special reference to the smaller natural
No. 322.-OCTOBER 1891.
history and microscopical societies, and field-clubs which do so much good wherever they are established. It is not unusual in such associations to hear the complaint made by some of the more critical members that subjects are brought forward without due regard to the attainments and proficiency of the general body of subscribers; or, as I myself have heard it expressed, that science is made to put on " too much side." It is undoubtedly the right of members to claim that matters shall be put before them in such a way as will be best calculated to benefit the majority; that is, in interesting language, and in terms which the majority may comprehend. It is only in this way that societies can be kept together, and science be made even more popular than it is already. But the right indicated runs in double harness, so to speak, with a distinct, but often disregarded obligation. It is assuredly the duty of those who attend the meetings of scientific societies to bring with them a certain amount of preparedness, and beforehand to familiarise them. selves with points which are likely to be discussed ; or, where this cannot be done for want of books or for other reasons, to consult a friend who may be able to render the required aid. No scientific society can be reasonably required to supplement the want of all preparation on the part of its members.
Closely related to the matters just considered is the suggestion sometimes made that simplicity of subjects rather than of phraseology is needed, meaning thereby that elementary objects and methods should be more frequently dealt with. Now this is a point on which there is ample room for opinions to differ ; but without entering into any lengthy discussion of these, it is obviously the duty of every member of a society to educate himself up to the level of his fellow-members. Half the pleasure and the profit of taking up with a hobby and joining a society, lie in the fact that one has mainly to educate himself, and thereby to undergo a certain amount of self-imposed discipline. It is not felt to be a discipline at all,