Page images

Scientific Study recommended.

714 To accomplish a knowledge of this, a cor- | radication, infloresence, muscular, action, rect acquaintance with the forms, localities, irritability, absorption, transpiration, and and habits of the individuals composing the manyr other physiological particulars of several kingdoms, should be first attained. organic aetion, that serve, though minutely, For this purpose, the works of the best to keep up the analogy between animal naturalists should be attentively perused, and vegetable life. To pursue this branch and living or stuffed specimens accurately of study with advantage, the works of examined. During this course, classifica. Linnæus, and elementary systems of science, tion and nomenclature should be jointly should be well studied, to attain a clear pursued, and the several synonymes aseer- and familiar acquaintance with those distained. The foundation, thus laid, the tinctions of inflorescence which decide the student may profitably acquaint himself class and order, and those more minute, with general, and next with comparative but not less marked peculiarities of vegeanatomy and physiology, on which de- table structure, habit, or locality, that point pends the demonstration of the habits of out the genus and species. The terms in the subject under investigation ; and such which these are conveyed, are derived from a course of study, if assisted by Derham's the Greek; a knowledge of this is therefore Physico-Theology, Paley's Natural Theo very necessary to a full and perfect estimalogy, and the works of Cuvier, Blumen- tion of their adaptation. In the more bach, and Spallanzani, will open such a view abstruse branches of botanical physiology, of the divine wisdom and contrivance, as a knowledge of chemistry is essential, to may be truly said, in the fullest sense, to account for the influence of soil, climate, lead the mind “ through nature up to and other minute particulars, on the growth nature's God."

of plants. As in the study of animated V Should the student wish to extend his nature, I advised the perusal of elementary inquiries into the minutiæ of animal or treatises, so on the present branch, the same ganization, in osteology, circulation, di- method must be rigidly pursued. The gestion, &e a knowledge of the elements foundation of systematic distinction, being ofw mechanics, hydraulics, and chemistry laid from Lee's Introduction to Botany, will be required; as also that of geometry vegetable physiology should be investigated and mathematics, to ascertain with accu- by Keith's Physiological Botany, after racy the mechanical action of articulation, which, the student will be qualified to the force of muscular power, and the ratio appreciate the scientific essays scattered of arterial and venous circulation. A suffi- through the pages of our magazines, and ciency of general and comparative, ana- transactions of learned societies. ti U tomy may be attained by plates, models, Geology, which will come next in order, and preparations, without the disgusting leads the student to a view of the internal ordeal of the hospital dissecting-room; the structure of the habitable globe, and here, latter is essential to the surgeon, but the as he advances from the primeval granite, former, if properly studied, will be found which is supposed to form the nucleus of to answer every purpose of the physiolo- the globe, through the various superstrata gist. I would here caution the student decreasing in density and gravity to the against indulging, as a study, in animal last superstratum of sand or vegetable biography, and detached investigations, in mould, his previous knowledge in anatomy the pages of magazines, and memoirs of and zoology will be brought into exercise, learned societies. Such productions, though by the investigation of fossil organic rethey may excite curiosity, and stimulate mains, while the various combinations of

inquiry, distract the attention from ele- | mineral and metallic substances will exerumentary study, and frequently : contain cise his chemical acquirements, and lead

matter, for the due investigation of which, immediately, by a natural connexion, to the - the student is unprepared. When any study of the last link of the chain of inanisuch productions are read, as they some- mate nature. nemo eni s m o times will be even with the most careful, / Mineralogy is perhaps one of the most a brief sketch of the particulars should be interesting, as well as the most important made, with short notes of such inquiries as of the natural sciences, and is admirably suggest themselves in the course of the suited to close the student's labours. By perusal. ang pria ment

this study, pursued in the pages of Kirwan, 16m2. Inanimate Nature. This grand divi- assisted by Parke's Chemical Catechism, sion vinvolves botany, geology, and mine the student will view with surprise and ralogy. In botany, the study of animal admiration, the secret but certain operastructure, already attained, will be found of tions, of nature, in the formation of new greato utility in solving the phenomena of bodies by the cheinical action of elementary

[ocr errors]

Observations on Infinity of Power and Essence of Matter.

[ocr errors]

principles, while his pleasure will be en- thousand octillions of tons, that is, it would hanced by an investigation, on mathe require a force equivalent to twice that matical principles, of the science of crys- immense weight to keep two such atoms in tallography, which unfolds the regular their places, were it possible to bring their formation of salts, metals, &c.

centres so near to each other.

Je ben A course of study thus pursued by 1. Supposing the mean specific gravity of natural gradations, expands the mental the earth to be five and a quarter times faculties, and adds fresh energies to the that of water, which is considered to be powers of thought, while it opens to the the nearest estimate, then its whole weight view new causes of love and gratitude to will be three millions six hundred and the great Architect of the universe. i thirty-five thousand trillions of tons ; but

· E. G. B. this is a very small part of the former

number. In order to form some notion of

the force estimated, suppose that the earth OBSERVATIONS ON THE INFINITY OF

contains one thousand millions of inhabiPOWER, AND THE ESSENCE OF MATTER.

tants, and that each can count one hundred MR. EDITOR,

globes, each equal to our earth, in every SIR, For the honourable notice you have minute of time; it would occupy them all, taken of my Principles of Natural Philo constantly day and night, for more than sophy, and the high opinion of its merits one million of millions of years, barely to which you have expressed, col. 555, accept count the number of globes, whose united of my sincere acknowledgments. A diffi- weight would be but just sufficient to keep culty or two has occurred, from this cir- the two centres in their places, as above cumstance, viz. that I have stated the force specified; and, if this force of the atoms of attraction and repulsion to be infinite at is not sufficiently great, carry on the divithe centres of the atoms, and that this forcesion, still by halving, till the last of another constitutes the essence of matter.

hundred points is found, and the force here · I was aware that some objections of this will be as many times greater than the kind might arise, but did not anticipate so above mentioned force, as that itself exmuch opposition to it as I find from many ceeds a single grain; nor can we arrive at of my scientific friends; in consequence of any limits. this, in conjunction with your observations, But this may be otherwise proved, thus: I am desirous of making some remarks imagine spheres of different assignable relative to the subject, which perhaps ap- radii to be described about the centre of the pears to be objectionable chiefly from its atom, as shewn in the corollary to the first povelty.

postulate, then, as proved in the corollary, And first, when I stated that the force of the whole force in each spherical surface is atoms at their centres is infinite, the law of equal; for as much as the force is less at gravitation being continued to those cen any point in a more distant surface, just so tres, I intended that the term infinite should much is the surface greater; hence, the be understood precisely in its mathematical force at the centre is the same as it is in sense, viz. to designate a quantity greater the whole of any one of these surfaces; than any assignable quantity of the same but the force is infinitely greater in the kind; and that it is so, is rigorously de whole surface, than it is at any one point monstrable on the principles proposed. f in that surface: therefore, the force at the For since the attractive force of the whole centre is infinite, taking the term in its earth arises from the combined and com- strict mathematical sense.", so w pounded actions of its several component. That matter is perceptible by means of atoms, each atom contributes some portion its powers is admitted, and when it was of the whole effect; and therefore, at a stated that these powers appear to consti. definite distance from its centre, its force is tute its essence, it was 'not intended to some definite quantity, at half that distance insinuate that this appears from the reasonit is four times greater, and at half the last ing in the sentence, or paragraph, but that distance, it is sixteen times greater, &c. it appears to be so from a consideration of Hence, there is a distance, where the force phenomena in general; and consequently is, at least, one grain, at half that distance the inference must be taken from the work it is four grains, at the half of this last at large. In the objection it is said, that sixteen grains, and again, at the half of the simple essence must necessarily be this, sixty-four grains, &c. * Now let the something distinct from its powers, and be division vbe carried on by halving, till we that from which its powers emanate, and attain the hundredth point, and the force in which they inhere." Now, why must at this last point will be one hundred the simple essence necessarily be something

[ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors]

distinct from the powers?, no man can a force, without an intermediate substances assign the reason. itir i

at least this seems to be the most obvious, When it is said that matter is percep- and natural conclusion. tible by means of its powers, the phrase is Matter, whatever it is, existed from the adapted to common language, as in another beginning, and continues to exist, by an act science we say the sun rises and sets : of Almighty power; and the same may be taken literally, it furnishes the objection; said distinctly of force; and why may pot: but strictly and, philosophically speaking, I this force, so existing by the Creator's willy take matter, and material force, to mean and power, and wisdom, constitute, and: the same thing.. Should we conceive the be, the very substance which we call matparts of matter to consist of minute ter, its real and simple essence? Such my solids, yet we do not perceive matter, or physical theory makes it appear to be, for: any of its phenomena, by these solids : proof of which, see in the work the explabesides, the simple consideration of the nations of nearly one thousand phenomena solids does not include the idea of the of the most difficult interpretation. It is not powers; the powers are the same whether indeed pretended that the explanations are all the solids are there or not, and conse- perfect, or the best that can be offered ; most quently the same effects are produced. I of them will be found simple and natural, mention this to meet another objection, though many of thêm may be, and doubtless which your review has not noticed, but will be, much improved by the labours of which has been strongly urged by some of others; I am continually more and more my learned friends, who are well informed satisfied that the foundation is correct. on philosophical subjects. They have This has resulted from my being in the strenuously contended that forces cannot act habit of bringing the several phenomena, against each other without something to which I observe, to the test of the princiact on as a substratum. This cannot be ples. I find them contradicted by noney proved, and before it is defended, it should and generally they present an explanation be, distinctly stated what the nature of at once simple and complete.? .; ." force is, whether it is a substance, or a

THOMAS Ex Ley. » property, and if a property, a property of Bristol, July 7th, 1829. i what. Doubtless in one way or other material forces emanate from the only I take this opportunity of correcting an error source of power of all kinds, and we know

which has unaccountably uccurred in my work,

page 117, lines 10 and 11, in which the words not, in the slightest degree, of any inter- 1 muriatic acid and lime should be

also in line 7, for more a read a more, and again.

in page 144, line 24, for 5 read 41. that is called a substance, which exists independently of any created being; therefore, if we can call any thing without us a substance, this force is entitled to the ap

FURTHER OBSERVATIONS ON THE ACpellation : , and we see the material uni

CORDANCES IN FACT BETWEEN THE verse, consisting of innumerable systems of

MOTIONS OF THE EARTH AND THE FALL forces, called into action originally by the

OF BODIES, CONSIDERED AS CAUSE AND Supreme Being, and still subsisting by

His will and pleasure, by the word of his MR. EDITOR. ,

, . power. We know indeed little or nothing SIR,I cordially thank you for the opporof force, except by its effects, and the tunity which you afford to free discussion, known laws of its operation; yet in the by your insertion of my last communicaface of the above objection, which I sup- tion, col. 521, in which I have unequivom, pose has arisen from preconceived notions, cally and unanswerably shewn that the the effects are such as at least to make it velocity of a falling body is the true and, appear that the forces or powers, which exact quantity which necessarily results we observe in the phenomena of matter, from the orbicular and rotatory motions of can act against each other without any the earth, and of course, that such fall is intermedium. Thus dry air may be com. the local effect of a local mechanical pressed, or expanded, by applying or re- cause, and not the effect of any principle moving a compressing force, so that it shall called universal gravitation, nor any proof occupy three thousand times more space of the existence of such principle. ins in its rarefied, than in its condensed state; . I now proceed to exhibit some other now this condensation would, evidently, be accordances of the same mode of action impossible, if the solid parts were previ- with phenomena, and I might easily shew ously in contact, therefore the atoms are the exact accordance of it with all phenokept at a distance by a force acting against mena; but I intrude on you merely sonie,


[merged small][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors]

views which I have not printed in my | 1950 miles distant, the weight, or tenTheorems, or Four Dialogues. .

dency to the centre, is double that at the

The descending velocity
The descending velocity, or weight, of su
weight of surface.



The fall towards the centre in all places bodies being as an it varies as Rm or or positions is an

R of or positions is a necessary consequence of OM,' though they are constant or nearly the totality of the action of the whole so; and when they vary, it is together. sphere being directed to the point in the In the case of the earth it is too good or 6096, greatest absolute motion in the centre, as a general expression for the whole sur-every single part being the patient of the face; for although in high latitudes 1524 action of the totality. R. PHILLIPS.' varies, yet as the velocity of the equator is a measure of that of the whole earth, only / Hyde Park Row, May 28, 1829. when multiplied by 4; so when 1524 varies, it demands a different multiplier

VISIT TO THE PYRAMIDS. for the ratio of the areas.

Volume VI. (for 1824,) of the Imperial If any other circle were taken instead | Magazine contains, a brief but interesting of the equatorial, then the multiple by 4 of account of this stupendous monument of the velocity in that circle, would not hold human art. Being founded, however, on for the whole moving surface; because four a visit made about two hundred years times the area of such circle would not be before, ample room remains for the enthe area of the whole moving surface. / lightened observations of a modern traConsequently, 4 would vary as 1524, and veller, to whose researches we stand inthe product 6096, or RM, would be con debted for the following article : stant; it is, therefore, a general expression The next morning I ascended the great for every portion of the earth's surface, pyramid. The outside is formed of rough which is part of a true mathematical stones of a light yellow colour, which form sphere.

unequal steps all round, from the bottom to 3,1 Thus, if latitude 60 were taken, the the summit: these stones, or steps, are two, velocity of rotation would be but half that three, or four feet high, and the ascent is at the equator, or 762 feet per second ; rather laborious, but perfectly free from but the rotatory momentum of the entire danger, or any serious difficulty. What surface would be 762 X 8 6096 as before. I a boundless and extraordinary prospect If 1524 is, therefore, the true velocity of opened from the summit! On one side, a the equatorial circle, 6096 is a universal | fearful and melancholy desart, either level, factor for every part of the terrestrial or broken into wild and fantastic hills of sphere.

sand and rocks ; on the other, scenes of the g. But if any portion is so varied in form, utmost fertility and beauty marked the as not to accord with the multiple by 4, course of the Nile, that wound its way as and is a little more, or a little less, then far as the eye could reach - into Upper RM would vary, and bodies would fall Egypt; beneath, amidst the overflow of with greater or less velocity; as is said to waters, appeared the numerous hamlets be the case at the protuberant equator, and groves, encircled like so many beautiand the flattened poles, where the seconds' | ful islets; and far in the distance was seen pendulum must be longer or shorter, the smoke of Cairo, and its lofty minarets, (because then 4 is too little or too much,) with the dreary Mount Mokattam rising according to the quantity of the departure above. Who but would linger over such a from the motion which four times the area scene; and, however wide he roamed, who of the mean equatorial circle demands. would not feel hopeless of ever seeing it e Of course, in the internal parts of the equalled ? earth, RM is less, because the velocity is The height of the great pyramid is five as distance from the centre when at the hundred feet; its base about seven hundred equator, or from the axis when in lati- feet long at each square, making a circumtudes; and then weight is as velocity or ference of about three thousand feet and distance, compared with that at the sur- its summit is twenty-eight feet square. It face; but every point is still acted upon is perfectly true, as a celebrated traveller by a function of RM, 3900 being to the has observed, that you feel much disapdistance from the centre, as 1524 is to the pointed at the first view of the pyramids: factor, which is to be multiplied by 4. as they stand in the midst of a fat and Hence, bodies increase in weight inversely boundless desart, and there is no elevation as the distance from the centre ; and at the near, with which to contrast them, it is not centre, when 1524 becomes 0, the force easy to be aware of their real magnitude, is the undivided, orbicular motion, but at l-until, after repeated visits and observations,

[ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][graphic][subsumed]
« PreviousContinue »