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there are found many remains of an animal called the Mastodon. It had tusks like an elephant, and appears to have been as large. I think you saw the bones of the Mammoth, when we were at Bristol, did you not?
Yes, Father; it must have been a prodigious creature.
Do you recollect its size, Frank?
No, Father; but the man said that it was much larger than any elephant which had ever been seen.
It was, though I forget its exact dimensions. I have read of one, whose head weighed four hundred and fourteen pounds.
Will you tell me, Father, of some instances in which the earth itself has evidently been disturbed by the revolutions which it has undergone?
Instances are very numerous. nent Geologist says, "That our whole country has been evidently convulsed. All the known strata, to the greatest depths that have been explored, have been more or less broken or displaced; and in some instances, have been so lifted, that some of the lowest of them have been raised to the surface; whilst portions of others, to a very considerable depth and extent, have been entirely carried away." I have actually visited some of our coal mines, at an immense depth in the earth, in which there H 2
are what the miners call Faults; which are nothing but immense disruptions of the
Fetch me, Frank, the Supplement to the sixth volume of the Encyclopedia Brittannica: I folded one of the leaves down near a remarkable passage on this subject, the other day. Here it is. "Mount Meisner, in Hesse, six miles long and three broad, rises about 1800 feet above its base, and 2100 above the level of the sea, overtopping all the neighboring hills, for forty or fifty miles round. The lowest part of the mountain consists of the same shell limestone and sandstone which exist in the adjacent country. Above these are, first, a bed of sand; then a bed of fossil wood, one hundred feet thick at some points; and the whole is covered by a mass of basalt, five hundred feet in height. On considering these facts, it is impossible to avoid concluding, that this mountain occupied, at one time, the bottom of a cavity, in the midst of higher lands. The vast mass of fossil wood could not all have grown there, but must have been transported by water from a more elevated surface, and lodged in what was then a hollow. The basalt, which covers the wood, must also have flowed in a current from a higher site; but the soil, over which both
the wood and the basalt passed, has been swept away, leaving this mountain as a solitary memorial to attest its existence.
"Thus, also, on the side of Mount Jura, next the Alps, where no other mountain interposes, there are found vast blocks of granite, some of a thousand cubic yards, at the height of more than two thousand feet above the lake of Geneva. These blocks are foreign to the rocks among which they lie, and have evidently come from the opposite chain of the Alps; but the land which constituted the inclined plane, over which they were rolled or transported, has been worn away, and the valley of lower Switzerland, with its lakes, now occupies its place. Transported masses of primitive rocks, of the same description, are found scattered over the north of Germany which Von Buch ascertained by their characters to belong to the mountains of Scandinavia; and which, therefore, carry us back to a period when an elevated continent, occupying the basin of the Baltic sea, connected Saxony with Norway.'
This account is very interesting, and, indeed, delightful. Many people would have gone by these rocks and mountains, and would not have thought of their history.
True, Frank; there are thousands of persons who live near them, and who have seen
them from their infancy, who know nothing of it. There are wonderful objects to be seen almost every where, if we will but use our eyes and our understandings. You have been reading Barrow's Travels in Africa: did you notice, as I wished you, what he says of the immense mountains near the Cape of Good Hope?
Yes, Father. He gives a particular description of them; and he says that the strata of which they are composed, is not "placed in the order of their specific gravity: the whole formation of them," he says, "clearly points out, that a grand revolution has taken place on the surface of the globe which we inhabit."
This, I think, Frank, is incontrovertible. The researches of almost every day, and in every part of the world, add new proofs to those which we already possess on this remarkable subject.
But, Father, did not the account you read of the mountains from the Encyclopedia, mention primitive rocks? Are there different kinds of rocks?
Certainly. Geologists divide rocks into four classes. The first are called Primitive Rocks. No animal or vegetable remains are to be found in these; indeed, they appear not to have undergone any alteration since they were originally formed. Another class
are called Secondary Rocks; traces of animals and shells, are generally, more or less, to be found in all these. Alluvial Rocks are the third class. These are generally loose in their quality, and have no very solid texture. The fourth class are Volcanic Rocks. As their name imports, they are produced by volcanos. You shall read more about these another day.
How evident it is, Father, that God has written, as you said, the truth of his word upon his works.
It is. The ocean has been over what is now the dry land. A deluge has evidently covered the earth, according to the doctrine of the Scriptures.
What a Being is God! The Psalmist says, "He looketh on the earth, and it trembleth!" And how awful must he be in his displeasure.
Yes, Frank, he must: it could not have been a light thing which induced him to send a deluge on the earth; to break up the fountains of the great deep, and thus to destroy the works of his own hands. His anger must be terrible; but "his favor is life, and his loving-kindness is better than life."
There is every reason, Father, to hope in his goodness.
There is, Frank: we know that “his