Imágenes de páginas

are covered with sand, and the wells which were not closed are brackish and useless. Vegetation is destroyed, the ground covered with grey ashes, and some birds and four-footed animals have perished; a new crater had been opened on the north-west side of the mountain, from which stones were rolled down, estimated to be as large as a house in Banda usually is. The most violent eruption, however, and the most fire, issued from the old crater. According to Valentyn, the eruption of this mountain, which broke out in 1690, continued for five years; and an old man, whose respectable character renders his testimony worthy of credit, affirms that it burnt from 1765 till 1775. The inhabitants, therefore, look forward with great apprebension to the future.

Curious Atmospheric Phenomenon. One of those curious atmospherical phenomena which are occasionally seen among the Hartz Mountains, and have once or twice been observed in Cumberland, was last year seen in Huntingdonshire. About half-past four o'clock on Sunday morning, July 16, the sun was shining in a cloudless sky, and the light vapours arising from the river Ouze were hovering over a little hill near St. Neot's, when suddenly the village of Great Paxton, its farm-houses, barns, dispersed cottages, trees, and all its different grass fields, were clearly and distinctly visible in a beautiful aërial picture, which extended from east to west about 400 yards. Nothing could exceed the astonishment and admiration of the spectator, as he looked at this surprising phenomenon from a gentle declivity in an opposite direction, at the distance of half a mile, or his regret at its disappearance in about ten minutes.

Extraordinary Diamond.-A diamond, said to be worth £20,000, and consequently one of the largest in the world, was among the spoils of the Peishwa, and is now in the East India Company's treasury, to be sold for the benefit of the captors. It was brought to England by the ship York.

Indian Wild Ass.--General Sir D. Ochterlony lately despatched, as a present from the nabob of Bhawulpoor to governor-general the marquess of Hastings, a beautiful wild ass, of that species called by the natives Gor Khur. This elegant creature is described as being eleven or twelve hands high, of a beautiful light fawn or cream colour, with long ears, and large black eyes. In disposition it is untractable; and in this, as well as in every other respect, excepting the colour, resembles the zebra. It is said to be a complete model of strength, beauty, and agility.

Immense Block of Amethyst.-A most singular curiosity has been brought to the presidency of Calcutta, by a Portuguese vessel lately arrived from Brazil. Incredible as it may appear to those who have not studied the wonderful combinations of nature, it seems to be a mass of amethysts, of the enormous dimensions of four feet in circumference, by something less than one foot in height, and weighing ninety-eight pounds. It is in its rough state, and is described rather as an assemblage of more than fifty irregular columns, high, smooth, transparent, purple and white, shooting up like a crystallization from one common bed or source, than as a regularly formed and perfect stone. It was sent from the Brazils as a real amethyst, and such also has it been declared by judges of the subject, who have examined it since its arrival in Calcutta.

Native Iron. A mass of native iron, weighing upwards of 3000 pounds, discovered several years ago, on the banks of Red River, in Louisiana, is now in the collection of the Historical Society in the New-York Institution, Its shape is irregular, inclining to oviform; ils surface deeply indented, and covered by an oxide of iron, and it is much broader at the bottom, where it has rested on the earth, than at the top, inclining somewhat in the manner of a cone. By several experiments which have been made upon different

pieces of it, there appears to be a want of uniformity in its quality, some parts being very malleable and ductile, while others possess nearly the bardness of steel. It is susceptible of the highest polish, and is said to contain some metal. This mass of iron was found about 100 miles above. Natchitoches, on Red River, in one of those rich and extensive quarries so common to that part of the country, and about twelve miles from the banks of the river.

Volcano in the Moon. At a late sitting of the Royal Society, captain Kater read an interesting paper on the subject of a volcano which he had discovered in the moon. On examining the dark part of the moon through a telescope, he perceived a bright spot resembling a star; and subsequent observations convinced him that it was a volcano. As that part of the moon in which it is situated has now become illuminated, the volcano is no longer visible; and before the period for observing it returns, it will probably bave ceased to be in a state of eruption. We copy from a Plymouth paper a paragraph on the same subject : “ Mr. Cooke, of Stonehouse, having constantly made observations on the moon for the last twelve months, discovered, about nine o'clock on the night of the 16th of January, (two days before the full, and the only bright night of the moon,) an effusion of smoke, which lasted about a minute, and appeared like the futtering of a bird. It passed over the moon before it evaporated, and must have fore-shortened, as it seemed in effect to have passed over the whole disc, from the place whence it arose, on the east of the spot Menelaus, and near Pilneas; but the effusion prevented the exact spot from being ascertained.” A letter from Gosport Observatory, dated April 6, says, “ At eight o'clock last evening, two bright spots appeared on the opaque portion of the moon's disc. The first we observed was immediately under that very dark shade, termed by Riccioli and others, Mare Humorum, and appeared like a longitudinal mountain (perpendicularly situated in respect to the then position of the moon), the light of which repeatedly increased and diminished in the course of two hours. The other was globular, near the spot Aristarchus, and through a Dollond's four and a half feet achromatic telescope, had the appearance of a star of the sixth magnitude, beneath the surface of the lunar orb. The first was not far distant from the volcano discovered by Mr. Cooke, of Stonehouse, near Plymouth, in the night of the 16th of January last. Whether these bright spots are of a volcanic nature, or whether they are mere portions of the moon peculiarly situated so as to be thus illuminated by the reflection of the sun's rays from the earth, we are not prepared to decide; but certain it is, that they were not seen by us during the first quarter of the last moon, when a good opportunity offered, and diligent observations were made several nights for a similar discovery. The bow whicb joined the cusps of the moon, last evening, was very conspicuous, even to the naked eye; and from the extraordinary light that was shed over the obscure part of her disc, perhaps a better opportunity never offered for such an observation.” Walking upon Water.-

A Mr. Kent, of Glasgow, has invented a machine, by which he is enabled to walk on the surface of the water, with perfect safety, at the rate of three miles in the hour. On Monday the 23d of March, between four and five o'clock, he walked on the Monkland Canal, at that rate, in the presence of about 200 persons, who all testified their approbation at the performance. A few days afterwards, before an immense concourse of spectators, he successfully walked on the Clyde, from above Rutherglen Bridge to the Wooden Bridge, at the foot of the Saltmarket, Glasgow; during which he frequently went through various evolutions with a musket; and repeatedly fired it. Since that he has

exhibited his machine in one of the new wet docks at Leith. The novelty of the circumstance drew together a considerable crowd to witness the uncommon scene. The apparatus consisted of a triangle of about ten feet, formed of rods of iron, to each angle of which was affixed a case of block tin, filled with air, and completely water tight. These little boats, or cases, seemed to be about two feet and a half long, by about one foot and a half broad, and served to buoy up the machine and its superincumbent weight. These cases, we understand, are filled with little hollow balls, attached by a chain, and capable of floating the machine, should any accident happen to the outer case. \From the centre of the little boats rose other tods, bent upwards, so as to meet in the middle at a convenient height, and forming at this junction a small seat or saddle, like that of the common velocipede. Like that machine, likewise, it has a cushion for the breast, and ropes or reins to guide the case at the apex of the triangle; and upon the whole the motion is produced in nearly the same manner. When in the seat, Mr. Kent's feet descended to within a few inches of the water; and to his shoes were buckled the paddles, made of block-tin likewise, and having a joint yielding in one direction, so as not to give a counter-motion to the machine, when moving the leg forward for a new stroke. His heels rested in stirrups attached to the saddle, and the motion was performed by the alternate action of the feet. He started about half past two o'clock, and after various evolutions, crossing and re-erossing the dock several times, and firing a fowling-piece, which, with a fishing-rod, were buckled to the rod in front of the saddle, he proved to the satisfaction of the numerous spectators, the complete safety of bis machine, and the practicability of using it even for a considerable distance.

Horizontal Direction of Balloons, - A Joumal of Rome announces that an inhabitant of Bologna, called Mingorelli, has discovered the horizontal direction of aerostatics, which for so many years has been the subject of physical and mechanical research, and for the discovery of which the Royal Society of London bas proposed a prize of £20,000 sterling. He proposes to take a voyage to England, on being assured of this premium on his arrival, but in point of fact it never has been offered.

New Globes. A Berlin artist, Mr. Charles P. Khummer, has recently published a globe with the mountains boldly executed in relief. This method impresses the subject more forcibly upon the mind than the mode hitherto employed, and is consequently admirably suited for geographical instruction and knowledge.

Newly invented Boat.-A boat, manned by four men, lately proceeded from the barbour of North Berwick to Canty Bay, a distance of two miles, and, after refreshing the crew, proceeded round the Bass Rock, and returned about a quarter past nine, having performed their voyage in the space of an hour and a quarter, gross time, being upwards of six miles, the whole performed without either sails, oars, or any steam apparatus. The invention is entirely that of a respectable millwright there, who expects a patent before he publishes the means of impulsion.

Mode of sweeping Streets, &c. by Machinery.-Mr. Tucker, a gentleman who lately left Limerick for New-York, has obtained a patent there, for sweeping streets by machinery. He is to perform the work of forty men, by two horses, to draw the machine up one side of the streets, and down at the other, which is not only to sweep but to collect the dirt in heaps, ready to carry away.

Machine for raising Water.-A simple machine has, it is said, beon perfected by a gentleman of Shropshire, for raising water from the bolds of ships, and for supplying reservoirs, which, by meaus of a small-weight, will raise a column of water at the rate of 15 quarts per minute, to the height of 100 feet, and so in proportion, double, treble, or quadruple columns of water to double, treble, or quadruple heights.

Egypt.-On the subject of subterranean researches for antiquities in Egypt, we learn from recent advices, that the objects disinterred hitherto are very inconsiderable in comparison with what remains to be discovered. A rivalship exists between the Arab inhabitants and the Europeans, as to the art of successfully excavating the mountains of sand, wherein have been buried for ages the porticos, buildings, and subterraneous galleries, of every description. The Arabs have pierced into the earth, to the depth of several fathoms, and are continually collecting vases, mummies, and other remains of antiquity; and though ignorant enough in other matters, can now distinguish'objects that are rare and in good preservation, from others of an ordinary sort. The Arabs of Gournon are zealously attached to this occupation; so much so, that considering the address with which they execute these labours, it is thought that the Europeans will have no occasion to undertake them, but for money may procure whatever the bowels of the earth shall disclose.

Excavations at Ronie.-Count Blacas, French ambassador at Rome, has caused excavations to be made, for several months past, in the temple of Venus at Rome, built by Adrian, situated between the Coliseum and the Temple of Peace. They are superintended by M. Fea, one of the antiquaries of Italy, and by M. Landon, an architect, and pensioner of the king of France. The excavations which have been made near the arch of Titus, have been attended with results which were not expected. They found there six white Grecian marble steps, which conducted them to the portico of the buried temple, and a large pedestal which supports the steps, a part of the ancient way, five feet and a half in breadth, and thirty in length, on which a balustrade of white marble was supported, the fragments of which have been found. Opposite to the Temple of Peace they have discovered two pillars of Phrygian marble, two feet in diameter, with a Corinthian capital, of beautiful workmanship, an entire entablature covered with ornaments in a very good style, and several Corinthian bases. All these fine fragments are of the same order. In the same place they have found the remains of several private habitations, which had been taken down by Adrian, in order to make room for his temple; two rooms still exist, which are decorated with paintings; they have evidently suffered from some local fire, for a great quantity of calcined materials and broken marbles have been found. They have also discovered two human skeletons, some pieces of terra cotta, a little bust of Bacchus, and several ornaments, in bronze, and marble.

Remedy for a Disease brought on by drinking Cold Water. - A man in Oliver-street, New York, after imprudently drinking cold water during the great heats, was seized with very alarming symptoms, from which be . was relieved by Dr. John De Alton White, who dissolved half an ounce of camphor in a gill of brandy; of this one-third was given at intervals of three minutes, which soon gave the patient relief.

Vaccination in China. — Extract of a letter from J. Livingstone, esq. one ..of the Hon. Company's surgeons in China, dated Macao, the 25th of

March, 1820, to Joseph Hume, esq. M. P.:-"I am quite astonished to obserye in my letters, and in the periodical publications, that the vaccine question is still keenly, agitated. It is surely, like many other questions which I need not mention to you, a humiliating on to the lords of the creation. We have no doubts here. I sometimes vaccinate 500 a week, and for the last ten years may set up a claim to an experience on the

[ocr errors]

subject, which, when compared with that of your noisy and angry disputants, would place theirs as nothing: yet no failure has occurred in my practice. Mr. Pearson, the head surgeon at the Company's factory, has been still more extensively engaged than myself, and has been equally successful : yet you know that the small-pox rages in China every spring sometimes with extreme virulence. I have often seen it in its worst forms in the midst of my vaccinated patients, in the same house and the same bet ; yet no failure has occurred, not even a variolated appearance."

Hydrophobia.- Dr. Lyman Spalding, one of the most eminent physicians of New York, announces, in a small pamphlet, that for above these fifty years, the Scutellaria lateriflora, L. has proved to be an infallible means for the prevention and cure of the hydrophobia, after the bite of mad animals. It is better applied as a dry powder than fresh. According to the testimonies of several American physicians, this plant, not yet received as a remedy in any European Materia Medica, afforded a perfect relief in above 1000 cases, as well in the human species, as the brute creation, (dogs, swine, and oxen.) The discoverer of the remedy is not known : Doctors Derveer (father and son) first brought it into general use. · Antidote to the Plague. - The external use of oil of olives, as a preservative against the plague, has been long known in the Levant; it has been applied by fomentations, frictions, and lotions ; but no one has hitherto taken it as an internal remedy, by drinking it. From a letter from the Swedish consul at Tangier, we learn that this discovery was made last year by M. Colaco, Portuguese Consul at Laraché. His first experiment was upon 200 persons, out of whom there were not ten in whose case it did not prove efficacious. As soon as the infection is caught, from four to eight ounces of oil of olives should be taken at once, according to the strength, &c. of the constitution. A universal perspiration will then take place, and in such abundance, that it appears to expel the virus, even alone: or at least, this has occurred in many instances. Its effects, however, as a sodorific, may be properly seconded, by taking a decoction of elderberries. In some individuals, this oil operates as an emetic; in others, it purges the bowels. But excessive perspiration is usually the principal symptom, and also the most beneficial. The Moors, notwithstanding their superstitious aversion to all interior remedies, especially with respect to the plague, acquiring knowledge from experience, have, at length, had recourse to this simple remedy. In a village near Tangiers, a father of a family, who had lost by the plague bis wife and four children, was enabled to save his own life and four other children, by using the oil. A husbandman Jiving in another village, three of whose children had been carried off by the plague, saved three others by the same means. At Tangier, two negresses survived the contagion by taking a strong dose. Though these are the first examples of any of their colour thus braving the contagion, many additional facts from the interior of the country confirm the trials already made, and those which are daily making. To render the remedy still more efficacious, the oil is used both internally by drinking, and externally by frictions, wastings, &c. Scarcely an instance has occurred wherein this double application has tailed of its effect. A Spanish physician, who has been upwards of a year in this country, has hereby cured almost all the Jews in Tangier. Out of 300 that have been attacked, since the beginning of the year, and who have had recourse to this remedy, scarcely in twelve has the malady proved fatal.

Medical Prize Question. A satisfactory answer not having been given to the question ---"Can the existence of idiopathic fever be doubted, proposed last year by the Société de Médecine of Paris, it is re-proposed, the greatest latitude being given to candidates in the choice and developement

« AnteriorContinuar »