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Scientific American Supplement, No. 401, September 8, 1883
Author: Various
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CAPTAIN MATTHEW WEBB.

Who was drowned on July 24 in attempting to swim through the whirlpool and rapids at the foot of the Falls of Niagara, was born at Irongate, near Dawley, in Shropshire, January 18, 1848. He was 5 feet 8 inches in height, measured 43 inches round the chest, and weighed about 141/2 stone. He learnt to swim when about seven years old, and was trained as a sailor on board the Conway training-ship in the Mersey, where he saved the life of a fellow seaman. In 1870 he dived under his ship in the Suez Canal and cleared a foul hawser; and, on April 23, 1873, when serving on board the Cunard steamer Russia, he jumped overboard to save the life of a hand who had fallen from aloft, but failed, and it was an hour before he was picked up almost exhausted. For this he received a gold and other medals. He became captain of a merchant ship, but soon after he relinquished the sea and devoted himself to the sport of swimming.

At long distance swimming in salt water he was facile princeps, but he did not show to such advantage in fresh water. In June, 1874, he swam from Dover to the North-East Varne Buoy, a distance of 11 statute miles. On July 3, 1875, he swam from Blackwall Pier to Gravesend Town Pier, nearly 18 statute miles, in 4 hours 52 minutes. On the 19th of the same month he swam from Dover to Ramsgate, 191/4 statute miles, in 8 hours 45 minutes. On August 12, 1875, he tried to cross from England to France, and although he failed, owing to the heavy sea, he compassed the distance from Dover to the South Sand Head, 151/2 statute miles, in 6 hours 48 minutes. On the 24th of the same month he made another attempt, which rendered his name famous all over the English-speaking world. Starting from Dover, he reached the French coast at Calais, after being immersed in the water for 21 hours 44 minutes. He had swum over 39 miles, or, according to another calculation, 451/2 miles, without having touched a boat or artificial support of any kind. Subsequently he swam at the Lambeth Baths, and the Westminster Aquarium, and last year, at Boston, U.S., he remained in a tank nearly 1281/2 hours. Latterly he had suffered from congestion of the lungs, and his health had become much impaired.



The story of his final and fatal effort needs here but a brief description. At two minutes past four, on July 24, Webb dived from the boat opposite the Maid of the Mist landing, and, amid the shouts and applause of the crowd, struck the water. He swam leisurely down the river, but made good progress. He passed along the rapids at a great pace, and six minutes after making the first plunge passed under the Suspension Bridge. Immediately below the bridge the river becomes exceedingly violent, and as the water was clear every movement of Webb could be seen. At one moment he was lifted high on the crest of a wave, and the next he sank into the awful hollow created. As the river became narrower, and still more impetuous, Webb would sometimes be struck by a wave, and for a few moments would sink out of sight. He, however, rose to the surface without apparent effort. But his speed momentarily increased, and he was hurried along at a frightful pace. At length he was swept into the neck of the whirlpool. Rising on the crest of the highest wave, he lifted his hands once, and then was precipitated into the yawning gulf. For one moment his head appeared above the angry waters, but he was motionless, and evidently at the mercy of the waves. He was again drawn under the water, and was seen no more alive. Some days later his body was found four miles below the fatal Rapids. It bore tokens of the fearful violence of the struggle which he had undergone. His bathing drawers were torn to fragments, and there was a deep wound in his head. An inquest was held, and the jury returned a verdict of "Found drowned."

Captain Webb was married about three years ago, and leaves a widow and two children. It is understood that he risked his life in this last fatal attempt to obtain money for the support of his family.—London Graphic.

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SEMI-DETACHED VILLAS, BROMFIELD CRESCENT, HEADINGLEY.

These houses are situated in a pleasant part of Headingley, which is the favorite residential suburb in the locality of Leeds. As regards accommodation, the ground-floor of each house comprises good-sized drawing and dining rooms, each with bay windows; well-lighted entrance halls, opening upon wooden verandas; kitchen, pantry, and scullery; on first floor are three good bedrooms, a bathroom, and other necessary accommodation; on second floor are two additional bedrooms. The basement contains coal-place and larder.

In these houses an attempt has been made to produce conveniently-planned and well-arranged habitations, combined with a pleasing and picturesque exterior, without involving a large outlay of money. The materials used are brick of a deep red color for facings, red terra-cotta from Messrs. Wilcock & Co., of Burmantofts, for moulded strings, sills, etc., and a very sparing use of stone from the Harehills Quarries. The front gables are constructed of timber in solid scantlings, well framed, and pinned together with oak pegs, filled in and well backed behind with brickwork; the panels faced with cement, which, together with the cored cornice, are finished in vellum color. The whole of the woodwork of exterior is painted a neutral shade of peacock blue, forming an admirable contrast with the deep red of the bricks, the sashes and casements only being finished in cream color. The whole of the chimneypieces in the interior are carried out from the architect's special design; those in the drawing-rooms being of mahogany, finished in rosewood color, and those in dining-rooms of oak, stained with ammonia and dull wax polished.



The houses, with outbuildings and boundary walls, which have been erected for Mr. John Hall Thorp, of Bromfield, Headingley, have cost L1,450, or thereabouts, this amount not including the price of land. They have been carried out from the designs and under the superintendence of Mr. William H. Thorp, A.R.I.B.A., architect, of St. Andrew's Chambers, Park Row, Leeds.—The Architect.

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THE DWELLINGS OF THE POOR IN PARIS.

In view of the possible approach of cholera, and the sanitary precautions that even the most neglectful of authorities are constrained to take, it is of some interest to us, says the Building News, to know how the poor are housed in the city of Paris, which contains, more than any city in the world, the opposite poles of luxurious magnificence and of sordid, bestial poverty. The statistics of the Parisian working classes in the way of lodgings are not of an encouraging nature, and reflect great discredit on the powers that be, who can be stern enough in the case of any political question, but are blind to the spectacle of fellow creatures living the life of beasts under their very eyes. In 1880, the Prefect of Police gave licenses to 21,219 arrivals in the city of French origin, and to 7,344 foreigners. In the succeeding year, the former had increased to 22,061, while the latter had somewhat diminished, being only 5,493. There was a census taken in 1881, from which it appeared that Paris contained 677,253 operatives and 255,604 employes and clerks, while out of every 1,000 inhabitants, 322 only were born in the city, and 565 came from the departments or the French colonies. The foreign element in the working classes has increased very rapidly, numbering 119,349 in 1876, to which by 1881 there was an addition of 44,689. To every 1,000 inhabitants, Paris now numbers 75 foreigners, though in 1876 the proportion was only 60. It may not be amiss to state that the annual increase of the Paris population is at the rate of 56,043 persons, and that in the five years 1876-81, the city received 280,217 additional mouths. The total population of the capital is 2,239,928, of whom 1,113,326 are males.

Returning to the poorer classes, we find that in 1872 they were estimated at 100,000; but that in 1873 they had risen to 113,733, and in 1880 to 123,735. It is unfortunate to be obliged to say that the majority of these people are housed worse in Paris than in almost any other great city in the world. There are two classes of lodgings for the poor—the one where the workman rents one or more rooms for his family, and, perhaps, owns a little furniture; the other, a single room tenanted for the night only by the unmarried man who pays for his bed in the morning and gets his meals anywhere that he can. Readers will remember how, under the auspices of M. Haussmann, western Paris was almost pulled down and transformed into a series of palatial boulevards and avenues. While the work lasted the Paris workman was well pleased; but he did not like it quite so much when the demon of restoration and renovation invaded his own quarters, such as the Butte des Moulins, and all that densely populated district through which the splendid Avenue de l'Opera now runs. The effect of all this was to drive the workman into the already crowded quarters at the barriers, such as La Gare, St. Lambert, Javel, and Charonne, where, according to the last statistics of the Annuaire, the increase was at the rate of 415 per 1,000. Of course the ill health that always pervaded these quarters increased also; and, from the reports of Dr. Brouardel and M. Muller, the number of deaths from typhoid and diphtheria were doubled in ten years. Dr. Du Mesnil, in making his returns for 1881 of convalescents from typhoid, remarked that the most unsanitary arrondissements were the 4th, 11th, 15th, 18th, and 19th—precisely those to which the principal migrations of laborers had taken place. The 18th arrondissement, which in 1876 had only 601 lodging houses with 8,933 lodgers, had, in 1882, over 850, with 20,816 inmates. In the 19th arrondissement there were 517 houses in 1876, with 9,074 lodgers, and 752 in 1882, with 17,662 inhabitants.

It is not only the crowded condition of the poor quarters that is such a standing menace to the health of the city, but also the shocking state of the rooms, which the unhappy lodgers are obliged to put up with. The owners of the property are, as happens in other places besides Paris, unscrupulous and grasping to the last degree, and have not only divided and subdivided the accommodation wherever possible, but have even raised the rental in nearly all cases. Whole families are crowded into a small apartment, icy cold in winter, an oven in summer, the only air and daylight which reaches the interior coming from a window which looks on to a dirty staircase or a still fouler court reeking with sewage. There are at the present time in Paris 3,000 lodgings which have neither stove nor chimney; over 5,000 lighted only by a skylight; while in 4,282 rooms there are four children in each below 14 years of age; 7,199 with three children; and 1,049 with four beds in each. The Parisian population has augmented only 15 per cent. in seven years; but the district of poor lodging houses has increased by twenty per cent., and the number of lodgings by about 80 per cent. It is true that a law was passed in 1850 to provide for the sanitary supervision of this class of property; but in Paris the law is a dead letter, and, although it is now active in the provinces and in places like Marseilles, Lyons, Bordeaux, and Nantes, it is applied, even there, in a jerky and intermittent manner.

Perhaps the worst of the abominable dogkennels called houses was the group known as the Cite des Kroumirs, in the 13th arrondissement, which, by a strange irony, was built on land belonging to the Department of Public Assistance, which was let out by that body to a rich tenant, who sublet it to these lodging-house owners. This veritable den of infection and misery has now been demolished; but there are plenty of others quite as bad. Notably, there is the Cite Jeanne d'Arc (a poor compliment to have named it after that sturdy heroine), an enormous barrack of five stories, which contains 1,200 lodgings and 2,486 lodgers. No wonder that it was decimated in 1879 by smallpox, which committed terrible ravages here. The Cite Dore is grimly known by the poor-law doctors as the "Cemetery Gateway." The Cite Gard, in the Rue de Meaux, is inhabited by 1,700 lodgers, although it is almost in ruins. The Cite Philippe is tenanted by 70 chiffonniers, and anybody who knows what are the contents of the chiffonnier's basket, or hotte, may easily guess at the effluvia of that particular group of houses. A large lodging-house in the Rue des Boulangers is tenanted by 210 Italians, who get their living as models or itinerant musicians. Both house and tenants are declared to be unapproachable from the vermin.

It is some satisfaction to know that these houses have lately awakened the apathy of some of the public bodies, and that more than one scheme is being put forward with a view of erecting proper industrial dwellings. The Municipal Council is negotiating with the Credit Foncier for the erection of a certain number of cheap houses, which, for the space of twenty years, will be exempt from all taxes, such as octroi, highway, door and window tax, etc. There are also one or two semi-private companies, which are occupying themselves with the question, and it is to be hoped that the rumors of the pestilence in Egypt may hasten the much-needed reform.

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There can be no doubt, says the Engineer, that the inventor who could supply in a really portable form a machine or apparatus that could give out two or three horse power for a day would reap an enormous fortune. Up to the present time, however, nothing of the kind has been placed in the market. Gas is laid on to most houses now, and gas engines are plenty enough, yet they do not meet the want which a storage battery may be made yet perhaps to supply.

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RECENT EXPERIMENTS AFFECTING THE RECEIVED THEORY OF MUSIC.

To prove the incorrectness of Helmholtz's statement that beats do not colesce into musical sounds, but that the ear will distinguish them as a rumbling noise, even when their number rises as high as 132 vibrations per second, Rudolph Koenig has constructed a series of tuning forks, recently presented by President Morton to the Stevens Institute of Technology. The following table exhibits the number of vibrations per second of these forks, the ratios of their vibrations when two are sounded together, the number of beats produced, and the resultant sound:

Vibrations per second. Ratio. Beats. Sounds.

3840 :4096 15:16 128 Ut_{2} 3904 : " 61:64 96 Sol_{1} 3936 : " 123:128 80 Mi_{1} 3968 : " 31:32 64 Ut_{1} 3976 : " 497:512 60 Si_{-1} 3989.3 : " 187:192 53.3 La_{-1} 4000 : " 125:128 48 Sol_{1} 4010.7 : " 47:48 42.7 Fa_{-1} 4016 : " 251:256 40 Mi_{-1} 4024 : " 503:512 36 Re_{-1} 7936 : 8192 31:32 128 Ut_{2} 8064 : " 63:64 64 Ut_{1} 8096 : " 253:256 48 Sol_{-1} 8106.7 : " 95:96 42.7 Fa_{-1} 8112 : " 507:512 40 Mi_{-1} 8120 : " 1015:1024 36 Re_{-4} 8128 : " 127:128 32 Ut_{-4}

On sounding two forks nearly in unison, the sound heard corresponds to a number of vibrations equal to the difference of the numbers of vibrations of the forks.

On sounding two forks, one of which is nearly the octave of the other, the ear perceives a sound, which is that given by vibrations whose number equals the difference in the number of vibrations of the higher fork and the upper octave of the lower fork.

Koenig has also found out the laws of the resultant sounds produced by other intervals than the octave, and has extended his researces to intervals differing by any number of vibrations, as may be seen from the above table.

His conclusion is that beats and resultant sounds are one and the same phenomenon.

Thus, for example, the lowest number of vibrations capable of producing a musical sound is 32 per second; in like manner, a clear musical sound is produced by two simple notes of sufficient intensity which produce 32 beats per second.

Koenig also made a very ingenious modification of the siren for the purpose of enabling Seebeck to sound simultaneously notes whose vibrations had any given ratio. It is furnished for this purpose with eight disks, each of which contains a given number of circles of holes arranged at different angular distances. A description of this instrument, which is also the property of the Stevens Institute, and of Seebeck's experiments is thus given in a letter by Koenig himself.

I.

Effects produced when the isochronism of the shocks is not perfect.

A.

In order to produce a note, the succession of shocks must not deviate much from isochronism.

If the isochronism is but little impaired, we obtain a note corresponding to the mean interval of the shocks.

If the intervals between the shocks are alternately t and t', and if the difference between t and t' is slight, we obtain the two notes t+t' and (t+t')/2. If the intervals between the shocks are alternately t, t', and t'', we obtain the two notes t+t'+t'' and (t+t'+t")/3.

Disk No. 1 has—

On circle No. 1 12 holes, angular distances t=30 deg. " " 2 24 " " " 15 deg. " " 3 36 " " " 10 deg. " " 4 36 " at irregular distances. " " 5 36 " distances t= 101/2 deg., t'=l0 deg.,t''=91/2 deg. " " 6 36 " " 11 deg. 10 deg. 9 deg. " " 7 36 " " 16 deg. 14 deg. " " 8 36 " " 161/2 deg. 131/2 deg.

Circle No. 8 produces the two notes of circles 1 and 2; circle No. 7 the same, but the low note is stronger than in 8.

Circle 6 produces the notes of circles 1 and 3, and so does circle 5, but in the latter the low note is stronger than in 6.

Circle 4 produces a noise approximating only to the note of circle 3.

By pulling out one of the buttons of the wind chest, we admit the air through eleven holes at a time, having an angular distance of 30 deg. and directing it against the corresponding circle of holes on the turning disk. If the arrangement of holes is not repeated identically twelve times on the same circle, we cannot, of course, make use of the above arrangements of holes of the wind tube, and we must then employ one of the movable brass tubes, which communicate with the interior of the wind chest by means of rubber tubes and stopcocks. The experiment with disk 1, circle 4, for example, requires the use of one of these two tubes, while the perforated wind tube of the wind chest may be used with all the other circles of the same disk.

B.

If t is much less than t', while t' is a multiple of t, the note (t+t')/2 disappears, and the notes t+t' and t are heard.

Disk No. 2 has—

On circle No. 1 12 holes, distances 30 deg. " " 2 36 " " 10 deg. " " 3 48 " " 71/2 deg. " " 4 60 " " 6 deg. " " 5 24 " " t= 5 deg., t'=25 deg. " " 6 24 " 6 deg. 24 deg. " " 7 24 " 71/2 deg. 221/2 deg. " " 8 24 " 10 deg. 20 deg.

Circle 8 produces the notes of circles 1 and 2; circle 7, those of 1 and 3; circle 6, those of 1 and 4; and circle 5, the note of circle 1 and of its sixth harmonic.

C.

If the same circular arc is divided into m and n equal parts; that is to say, if mt=nt', we obtain the notes m and n.

Disk No. 3 has—

Distances. On circle No. 1 24 holes, distances 15 deg. " " 2 24 " " 15 deg. & 27 holes, 13-1/3 deg. " " 3 24 " " 15 deg. " 30 " 12 deg. " " 4 24 " " 15 deg. " 32 " 11-1/4 deg. " " 5 24 " " 15 deg. " 36 " 10 deg. " " 6 24 " " 15 deg. " 40 " 9 deg. " " 7 24 " " 15 deg. " 45 " 8 deg. " " 8 24 " " 15 deg. " 30, 36, & 48 holes

Circle 1 produces a single note, circle 2 a second, circle 3 a third, circle 4 a fourth, 5 a fifth, 6 a sixth, 7 a seventh, and 8 a perfect chord.

II.

Experiments to prove that the shocks may proceed from two or several different places to conspire in the formation of a note, provided that the isochronism of the shocks is sufficiently exact, and that the shocks are produced in the same direction.

Disk No. 4 has—

On circle 1 24 holes. " " 2 36 " " " 3 23 " " " 4 12 at an angular distance of 10 deg. from the holes of circle 3. " " 5 12 holes at an ang. dist. of 20 deg. from those of circle 3 " " 6 12 " " " 0 deg. " " " 7 12 " " " 15 deg. " " " 8 12 " " " 15 deg. "

1. If from the same side two currents of air at an angular distance of 15 deg. are directed against circle No. 8 of 12 holes, we obtain the octave of the note produced by the same circle if only one current is used.

The wind-chest is provided with a special arrangement for this experiment. By pulling out button 8, we give vent to 12 currents of air spaced like the twelve holes of the disk; on pulling out button 9 we also produce 12 currents, but they are situated just between the first. Each of these two buttons pulled out alone will produce the same note corresponding to 12 holes, but drawn together they produce the octave, or the note of circle 1.

2. If two currents of air are directed against two similar circles whose holes are situated on the same radii, we obtain the same result.

In this experiment, circles 7 and 8 are sounded by pulling out buttons 7 and 9.

3. When two currents of air are directed on the same radius against two circles of similar holes arranged alternately, these circles sounded simultaneously will produce the octave of the note which one of them would give alone.

This experiment is performed by sounding circles 6 and 7 and pulling out buttons 6 and 7.

4. If we direct three currents of air on the same radius against three similar circles having holes alternating by a third of the distance between two holes of the same circle, the three circles together produce the fifth of the octave (Note 3) of a single circle.

Circles 3, 4, and 5 sounded together emit the note of circle 2.

(By sounding only two circles, 3 and 4, or 4 and 5, we make the same experiment with two circles as disk No. 2 enabled us to make with circle 8 alone; also, by sounding circle 3 alone, we obtain the note corresponding to 12 holes; then pulling out button 4, the notes corresponding to 12 and 36 holes are heard suddenly and very strongly; but as soon as circle 5 is sounded also, the note of 12 disappears completely, and we have left only that corresponding to 36 holes.)

III.

Effects of interference produced by shocks in opposite directions.

1. If we direct against a circle of holes two currents of air in opposite directions, the note obtained with a single current is very much weakened, if the two currents reach the holes simultaneously. If the impulses are not isochronous, the intensity of the note is increased.

2. If the two currents are directed against two circles of the same number of holes, the effect is the same as for the two preceding cases.

3. If two currents of air are directed against two circles, one of which has twice as many holes as the other, we obtain only the low note if every shock of one is isochronous with every shock of the other.

We obtain the notes of both circles, one of which is the octave of the other, if there is no isochronism between the shocks.

Disk No. 5 has three circles of 36, 36, and 72 holes. The air currents are directed against the circles of holes through the movable tubes, made so that they can be detached at pleasure. All these experiments require great precision in the arrangement of these wind tubes. To make sure that the tubes are simultaneously before two holes of the disk, it is well to put little rods through the holes, reaching into the wind tubes, and to remove them only when the tubes are firmly attached. The experimenter should be careful also to place the two tubes exactly at the same distance from the turning disk. It is clear that notwithstanding all these precautions we never obtain perfect interference, but only the weakening of notes that ought to disappear entirely if all the arrangements were made with mathematical exactness, and also if the ear could have absolutely the same position with regard to impulses produced in opposite directions.

IV.

Beats.

Disk No. 6 has—

8 circles of holes to the number of 1, 2, 23, 24, 25, 47, 48, 49.

Circles 3 and 4, 4 and 5, 6 and 7, and 7 and 8 ought to produce as many beats as circle 1 produces simple shocks; and circles 3 and 5, 6 and 8, as many beats as circle 2 produces simple shocks; but we must content ourselves in these experiments with a much less perfect result, for the following reasons: The disk never being rigorously plane, alternately approaches the single wind pipe and recedes from it. No matter how slight this deviation is, every sound given by a single circle is heard with periodical intensities which complicate the phenomenon. This inconvenience could be avoided by placing several wind-pipes around the circle; but while we can extend the period of the holes in two circles (whose difference is 1) around the whole circle by blowing through a single wind tube, we would be compelled to limit it to the distance between two wind tubes, and it would become too short; for, when the disk rotates with a velocity sufficient to produce notes high enough and intense enough, the beats become too numerous to be easily perceived.

Besides these provisions, which sufficiently illustrate the points to which we desire to call especial attention, Koenig also furnishes two more disks.

The seventh contains 8 circles having 48, 54, 60, 64, 72, 80, 90, and 96 holes respectively. The 1st, 3d, 5th, and 8th will produce a perfect chord when the air is admitted through the 11 holes in the wind chest; with one wind tube the entire gamut may be obtained.

Finally the eighth disk contains 8 circles of holes, whose numbers are in the ratio of 1:2:3:4, etc., and which may be used to illustrate harmonics. C. F. K.

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THE MOTIONS OF CAMPHOR UPON THE SURFACE OF WATER.

[Footnote: Continued from SUPPLEMENT No. 391, page 6240.]

To have these movements occur in a constant and invariable manner upon the surface of water, and especially upon mercury, it is necessary to take precautions in regard to cleanliness, this being something that we have purposely neglected to mention to our readers. For we wished, through this voluntary omission, to stimulate their sagacity by bringing them face to face with difficulties that they will perhaps have succeeded in overcoming, with causes of error that they will have perceived, and the principal one of which is the want of absolute cleanliness in the water, vessels, and instruments that they may have used for the experiments.

Thus, very probably, they will have more than once seen the camphor remain immovable when placed in vessels in which they had hoped to be able to see it undergo its gyratory and other motions. Their astonishment will have been no less than our own was when we noticed the sudden cessation of the camphor's motions under the influence of vitreous or metallic objects, such as glass rods or tubes, pieces of gold, silver, or copper coin, table knives, etc., dipped into the liquid in which such motions were taking place before the immersion of the objects under consideration.

The instantaneously sedative power of the human fingers, or of a hair, will have, perhaps, reminded them of some sort of sorcery, or of some diabolic art worthy of the great Albert.



As for ourself, we confess that, after repeating the curious experiments of Mr. Dutrochet day after day, and scrupulously following his directions, we have, in the presence of our results, that were exactly identical with his, almost been tempted to believe ourself to be the victim of some occult power, or at least of some optical illusion, the true cause of which remained a mystery to us. Finally, after many fruitless attempts to find a key to the enigma that engaged our attention, the light finally dawned upon us, and then shone straight in our eyes.

In comparing the last results of our experiments with those that we had obtained previously, we saw, for example, that the camphor moved in the test glasses at a level that was notably higher than that at which its gyration took place the day before, or the day before that. And yet we had always used the same vessels, the same water, and particles detached from the same lump of camphor.

To what, then, could be due the difference observed between the two levels at which we had, in the first and last place, seen the camphor execute its movements? In the absence of any answer that was satisfactory, we finally suspected that the difference that we had noticed was ascribable to the fact that, after the numerous washings that the apparatus had been submitted to in having water poured into them to repeat the experiments, they had gradually been freed from impurities of whatever nature they might have been, and which, unbeknown to us, might have soiled their sides.

Starting with this idea, which was as yet a hyphothetical one, we began to wash our hands, glasses, etc., at first with very dilute sulphuric acid, and then with ammonia. Afterward we rinsed them with quantities of water and dried them carefully with white linen rags that had been used for no other purpose; and finally we plunged them again into very clean water. We thus cut the Gordian knot, and were on the right track.

In fact, on again repeating Mr. Dutrochet's experiments, with that minute care as to cleanliness that we had observed to be absolutely necessary, we saw crumble away, one after another, all the pieces of the scaffolding that this master had with so much trouble built up. The camphor moved in all our vessels, of glass or metal, and of every form, at all heights. The immersed bodies, such as glass tubes, table knives, pieces of money, etc., had lost their pretended "sedative effect" on a pretended "activity of the water," and on the vessels that contained it. The so-called phenomenon of habit "transported from physiology into physics," no longer existed.

The likening of the apparatus employed to obtain motions of camphor upon water, with the entirely physiological apparatus by means of which nature effects a circulation of the liquid contained in the internodes of Chara vulgaris, had proved a grave error that was to be erased from the science into which it had been introduced by its author with entire good faith. The true cause of life had not then been unveiled, and the new agent designated as diluo-electricity vanished before the very simple and authentic fact that camphor moves rapidly upon the surface of very pure mercury, in which no one would assuredly suppose that that volatile substance could dissolve.

Mr. Dutrochet attaches great importance to the manner in which the water is poured (with or without agitation) into the vessel with which the experiment is performed. The matter is in fact of little or no importance, and to prove this, it is only necessary to employ a test glass (see figure) provided with a lateral tube, A, that terminates in a lower tubulure, B, above which there is a contraction, C. Upon pouring water into the lateral tube until the level reaches D, and placing a particle of camphor on its surface, the camphor will be seen to continually move about, even when the liquid has reached the upper edge of the vessel. To reduce the level to various heights, it is only necessary to revolve the tube in the cork through which it is fitted to the tubulure. In proceeding thus, agitation or collision of the water is avoided; and yet if the test glass is very clean, the camphor will continue to move at every level of the water.

But, some one will doubtless say, how do you explain the stoppage in the motions of the camphor on the surface of water contained in vessels that are not perfectly clean? Before answering this question, let us say in the first place that the cause of the motions under consideration is due to nothing else but the evaporation of this concrete oil—to effluvia that escape from all parts and that exert upon the body whence they emanate a recoiling action exactly like that which manifests itself in an aelopile mounted upon a brasier, or, better yet, in the explosion of a sky-rocket. A portion of these camphory vapors, as well as a small portion of the camphor itself, dissolves in the water and forms upon its surface an oily layer which is at first very slight, but the thickness of which may increase in time until it becomes (especially if the vessel is narrow) a mechanical obstacle to the gyration of the small fragments of camphor that it imprisons, and whose evaporation it prevents. Now, as this layer of volatile oil may and does evaporate, in fact, after a certain length of time, the camphor then resumes its gyratory motions; but there is not the least reason in the world for saying on that account that it "has habituated itself to the cause which had at first influenced it, and that, too, in modifying itself in such a way as to render null the influence of a cause that has not ceased to be present" (Dutrochet, l.c.., p. 50).

We have been enabled to convince ourself of the existence of this oily layer of camphor when it was of a certain thickness by introducing under the water on which it, had formed, a few drops of sulphuric ether whose sudden evaporation produced sufficient cold to instantaneously congeal the layer in question and thus render it perfectly visible to the eye. The slight layer of greasy matter that habitually lines the sides of vessels from whence no effort has been made to remove it, produces effects exactly like those of the oil of camphor, that is to say, that in measure as it becomes thicker it likewise arrests the motions of the concrete volatile essence.

This is precisely what happens in a test-glass in which we see the camphor in motion become immovable if the level of the water be raised a few centimeters, and, more especially, if it be raised to the upper edge of the apparatus. In its slow ascent the liquid licks up, so to speak, the oily layer that lines the inner surface of the vessel, and this material spreads over the surface of the water and forms thereupon a layer which, in spreading over the bit of camphor itself, prevents its evaporation, and, consequently, its motions. The existence of the layer under consideration cannot be doubted, since it is made to disappear by causing the water to-overflow from the edges of the vessel, and, more easily still, by spreading a piece of filtering paper over the liquid in which the camphor is in a state of rest. As soon as the paper is removed (without the water being touched by the fingers, it should be understood), the camphor resumes its motions and afterward continues them at all levels.

The fingers themselves, provided they are very clean, have no power to stop the gyration. The following experiment, which is easy to repeat, is an unquestionable proof of this.

Wash carefully the middle finger with aqua ammonia, and afterward with plenty of water, and then dip it into a drinking glass in which a fragment of camphor is rapidly moving, and the gyration will not be stopped. But it will be made to stop instantly if the finger in its natural state (that is, covered with the fatty substances that ordinarily soil the fingers, especially in summer) be dipped into this same glass.

Movements of Camphor upon Mercury.—In order to study the motions of camphor, mercury possesses, as compared with water, a great advantage, and that is that we can easily assure ourselves of the degree of cleanliness of this metal by means of the condensed breath. The vapory-deposits thereon in a uniform manner if the mercury is perfectly clean, but forms variously shaded and more persistent spots if it is soiled by foreign bodies But it is extremely difficult to clean mercury completely. To do so Mr. Boisgiraud and I take distilled mercury and leave it for a long time in contact with concentrated sulphuric acid, taking care to often shake the mixture. Then, after removing the greater part of the acid, we throw the metal into a vessel containing quick lime in powder, and finally pass it through a filter containing a few holes in its lower part.

Purified by this process, mercury not only permits of the motions of camphor on its surface, but renders visible the traces of the vapors that escape from it, and which resemble small tadpoles with a long tail that are endowed with very great agility. Nothing is more curious than to see the particle of camphor successively ascend and descend the strongly pronounced curves presented by the mercury near the sides of the vessel that contains it. On raising the temperature of the metal slightly, the motions of the camphor on its surface are accelerated, and the same effects occur with water that has been slightly heated.

The experiments that we have just called attention to show what importance slight impurities may have upon certain results. "They prove," says our learned colleague Mr. Daquin, "that there exists upon polished substances an imperceptible coating of those fatty matters which serve to-day to explain Moser's images." We find therein also a manifest proof and a rational explanation of those grave errors into which the presence of these fatty matters, that have hitherto been scarcely suspected, led so clever and so distinguished a scientist as the illustrious discoverer of endosmosis.—N. Joly, in La Nature.

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CARBONIC ACID IN BEER.

We present a diagram, on exposition at the last Brewers' Convention in Detroit, of the racking device, devised by J. E. Siebel in 1872, and used at that time in the brewery of Messrs. Bartholomae & Roesing, in Chicago. The object of the apparatus is to retain as much carbonic acid in the beer as possible while racking the same off into smaller packages from the storage vats. The importance of this measure is apparent to every one who knows what pains are taken to preserve the presence of this constituent in all the former stages of the brewing process. In the method of racking off which is in present use in most breweries, the beer is forced through a rubber hose from the cask in the store vault to the barrels, kegs, and smaller packages in the fill room. Owing to the excess of pressure in the beer as it enters the keg, it is evident that a large amount of the carbonic acid gas must escape. The escape of carbonic acid during the process of racking off is indeed so large that even a small difference in the pressure of the atmosphere causes a remarkable difference in this respect. It is, therefore, evident that if a larger pressure can be maintained while racking off, a larger amount of carbonic acid gas will remain in the beer. It is true that the racking off will take a little longer time if done under pressure, but this inconvenience is certainly insignificantly small, when compared with the other labors and troubles daily undergone in a brewery, for the sole purpose to preserve in the beer the carbonic acid in that form in which it has been formed during the fermentation, and in which form it has far more refreshing and other valuable properties than in any other form in which it may be subsequently introduced into the beer by artificial means. The apparatus designed in the accompanying cut is calculated to artificially produce a higher pressure of the atmosphere, at least within the keg which is to be filled with beer. For this purpose, the beer from the store cask running through the pipe, B, enters the keg through a hollow copper bung, fitting light into the bung hole by means of a rubber washer. The air contained in the keg, being replaced by the beer, is forced out by means of the hollow copper bung, taking its course through the pipe, inscribed "Glass Gauge," until it is allowed to escape in the standpipe, C, containing a column of water, the height of which designates the pressure within the keg, and a consequently increased retention of carbonic acid gas. If the keg or barrel is filled with beer, the same becomes apparent from the beer showing itself in the glass gauge; then the faucet, B, is closed, the copper bung is lifted out of the bung hole, and the beer contained in the pipe is just sufficient to completely fill the keg, which is then bunged up, while the apparatus is transferred to the next keg. Should the attendant carelessly neglect to close the faucet in proper time, the surplus beer will not necessarily be wasted, but will be collected in the vessel, D, whence it can be drawn off through e.—Chemical Review.



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ON THE DIFFERENT MODIFICATIONS OF SILVER BROMIDE AND SILVER CHLORIDE.

Hermann W. Vogel has made a comparative study of the properties of silver bromide, obtained by precipitation in an aqueous solution of gelatin, and those of the same compound prepared by precipitation in an alcoholic solution of collodion. In 1874 Stas called attention to six modifications of silver bromide. One of these, granular bromide of silver, obtained by boiling the flocculent precipitate for several days with water, he stated, was the most sensitive to light of all substances known; exposure for two or three seconds to the pale blue flame of a Bunsen burner being sufficient to blacken it. Important as this fact was for photographers it was not applied for years, and it was only in 1878, when, it having been found that silver bromide precipitated in a gelatine solution and boiled for several hours becomes much more sensitive to light, that the remarks of Stas was recalled. Today these observations have become of the greatest importance to practical photography. They have led to the preparation of the silver bromide gelatin emulsion and the silver bromide gelatin plates, which are twenty times more sensitive than the silver iodide collodion plates, and have become indispensable when impressions are to be taken in a dim light.

The extraordinary sensitiveness of silver bromide in gelatin seemed the more remarkable since it was known that silver bromide in collodion is only moderately sensitive. The explanation was sought for in various directions, but as the result of numerous investigations it appears that the chief cause of the difference is the presence of different modifications of silver bromide. From a consideration of the work already done on the subject, Vogel suspected that silver bromide precipitated in an aqueous colloidal liquid would have notably different properties from silver bromide precipitated in an alcoholic colloidal solution. Silver bromide was prepared in many different ways. Emulsions were made in bromide solutions containing gelatin or collodion (the former aqueous, the latter alcoholic), some with the aid of heat, others without. Part of the emulsion was then poured upon plates kept at a moderate temperature and dried. The remainder was boiled or treated with ammonia before being applied to the plates. He also precipitated silver bromide in dilute gelatin or collodion solutions, allowed it to settle completely, washed the precipitate, and mixed it with a new portion of gelatin or collodion before applying it to the plates. Finally he precipitated pure silver bromide, in the absence of all colloids, by means of pure aqueous or alcoholic solutions of bromides and attempted to bring this upon plates, using gelatin or collodion as a cement. The result of all these experiments is that there are essentially two modifications of silver bromide, the one being obtained by precipitation in aqueous, the other in alcoholic solutions. The first, on account of the position of the maximum of sensitiveness for the solar spectrum, he calls blue sensitive, the other, for the same reason, indigo sensitive.

It is of no consequence whether the aqueous or alcoholic solution in which the silver bromide is formed contains gelatin or collodion, or whether the precipitation is effected with excess of bromide or of silver nitrate. It makes no difference whether the solution is hot or cold, or whether the silver bromide is treated with ammonia or whether it is boiled or not. The only necessary condition is that in precipitating indigo sensitive silver bromide the solutions must contain at least 96 per cent of alcohol. From aqueous alcoholic solutions blue sensitive silver bromide is precipitated.

Besides the difference of sensitiveness toward the solar spectrum, these modifications of silver bromide exhibit other characteristic differences in properties which indicate beyond a doubt that they are two essentially different modifications of the same substance. Among these are, 1st. Their unequal divisibility in gelatin or collodion solutions. The indigo sensitive silver bromide cannot be distributed through a gelatin solution, while the blue sensitive modification does so very readily. 2d. Their unequal reducibility; the blue sensitive silver bromide being reduced with much greater difficulty than the indigo sensitive variety. 3d. Their different action toward chemical and physical sensitizers. 4th. Their different action toward photographic developers. 5th. Their different action under the influence of heat. The blue sensitive variety if heated under water has its sensitiveness perceptibly increased, while the other is not changed by such treatment.

A direct transformation of one modification into the other has not yet been accomplished. The effect of the light upon these substances is incipient reduction, and we might hence suppose that the more reducible indigo sensitive variety would be the more sensitive to light. But this is not the case, because it is not chemical reducibility, but the absorption power for light that is of the greatest importance. Now the blue sensitive silver bromide has a greater absorption power than the indigo sensitive variety, and hence its greater sensitiveness. Silver chloride prepared by methods similar to those used in making the two forms of bromides was also found to exist in two modifications. One is designated as ultra violet sensitive, the other as violet sensitive silver chloride.—Amer. Chem. Jour.

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ANALYSIS OF A SAMPLE OF NEW ZEALAND COAL.

[Footnote: Read before the Society of Public Analysts on the 28th June, 1883.]

By OTTO HEHNER

Some discussion having recently taken place as to the value of New Zealand coal as a fuel, the following results of a somewhat full analysis may be worthy of being placed on record.

The sample to which the results refer consisted of large brownish black lumps, many of which showed woody structure; the fractures were conchyloid, the surface shiny and highly reflecting. It was interspersed with a considerable amount of an amber colored resin. When powdered it appeared chocolate brown. It burned readily, the flame being bright and very smoky. Its ash was light and reddish brown.

It consisted of—

Water (loss at 212 deg. F.) 20.09 Organic and volatile matter 75.19 Ash 4.72 ——— 100.00

The organic and volatile constituents had the following percentage composition—

Carbon 71.26 Hydrogen 5.62 Oxygen 21.58 Nitrogen 1.06 Sulphur 0.48 ——— 100.00

The ash was composed of—

Silica 27.26 Alumina 26.48 Oxide of iron 12.98 Lime 20.19 Magnesia 3.42 Sulphuric acid 9.47 Alkalies and loss 0.20 ——— 100.00

From these figures the composition of the coal itself calculates as under—

Water 20.09 Carbon 53.58 Hydrogen 4.23 Oxygen 16.23 Nitrogen 0.80 Sulphur 0.36 Silica 1.29 Alumina 1.25 Oxide of iron 0.61 Lime 0.95 Magnesia 0.16 Sulphuric acid 0.44 Alkalies 0.01 ——— 100.00

One ton furnished 8,458 cubic feet of gas and 8 cwt. of coke.

The very high proportion of water contained in the sample is very remarkable. It was so loosely combined, that even at ordinary temperature it gradually escaped, the coal crumbling to small pieces. The large amount as well as the high percentage of oxygen characterize the so called coal as a lignite, with which conclusion the physical characters of the sample are in perfect harmony.

The resin to which I have referred has not been further analyzed. It was found to be insoluble in all ordinary menstrua, such as alcohol, ether, carbon disulphide, benzene, or chloroform, and neither attacked by boiling alcoholic potash nor by fusing alkali. On heating it swells up considerably and undergoes decomposition, but does not fuse.

The coal may be valuable as a gas coal and for local consumption, but the large proportions of water and of oxygen militate against its use as a steam producer, only 58 per cent. of it being really combustible.

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DETERMINING MANGANESE IN STEEL, CAST IRON, FERRO-MANGANESE, ETC.

By E. RAYMOND.

The method in question is recommended as easy, expeditious, and accurate. It consists in precipitating all the manganese in the state of peroxide, dissolving it in a ferrous solution so as to bring back the manganese to the manganous slate, and determining volumetrically, by means of potassium permanganate, the quantity of ferrous salt which has been converted into ferric. The method of rapidly precipitating manganese peroxide is peculiar. If we act upon cast-iron or steel with nitric acid and potassium chlorate in certain proportions, and boil the mixture, the manganese is completely precipitated in the state of peroxide insoluble in nitric acid, but retaining a small quantity of ferric oxide. Suppose that we have a sample of steel or manganiferous cast-iron containing less than 7 per cent of manganese. Three grammes are treated in a small flask with 40 c. c. of nitric acid, of sp. gr. 1.20, added little by little. The liquid is stirred, and ultimately heated to complete solution. It is withdrawn from the fire, and 15 grammes potassium chlorate are added, and then 20 c. c. of nitric acid at sp. gr. 1.40. It is boiled for about fifteen minutes, until the escape of chlorine ceases; all the manganese is found thrown down as peroxide; hot water is added, the mixture is filtered, and the precipitate washed with boiling water. To dissolve the manganese peroxide thus obtained we measure exactly 50 c. c. of an acid solution of ferrous sulphate, made up with 40 grammes ferrous sulphate to 750 c. c. water and 230 c. c. sulphuric acid (full strength). The 50 c. c. are poured into the flask in which the sample has been dissolved, and to which a little peroxide adheres, and it is then poured upon the precipitate and the filter in a Berlin-ware capsule. The manganese peroxide dissolves very readily, transforming its equivalent of ferrous sulphate into ferric sulphate. The liquid is then diluted to 100 or 150 c. c. for the next operation. We then take a solution of permanganate formed by the same proportions as are used in determining iron by the process of Margueritte (5.65 grammes of the crystalline salt per liter of water), and determine its standard exactly. By means of this liquid we determine volumetrically the quantity of ferrous sulphate remaining in the solution of manganese. We take then 50 c. c. of the original solution of ferrous sulphate diluted as above, and determine the total ferrous salt.

The difference between the two determinations corresponds to the ferrous salt which has been peroxidized by the manganese peroxide. The quantity of iron thus peroxidized multiplied by 0.491 gives the quantity of manganese contained in the portion operated upon. In the case of a steel or cast iron containing but little manganese it is convenient to dissolve the peroxide in 25 c. c. only of the ferrous solution. Small Gay-Lussac burettes may then be used in the titration of only 0.010 meter internal diameter, and graduated into one-twentieth c. c., which allows of great exactitude in the determination. For a spiegeleisen not more than 1 gramme of the sample should be taken, and for a ferro-manganese 0.3 gramme.

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MANGANESE AND ITS USES.

Manganese is one of the heavy metals of which iron may he taken as the representative. It is of a grayish white color, presents a metallic brilliancy, and is capable of a high degree of polish, is so hard as to scratch glass and steel, is non-magnetic, and is only fused at a white heat. As it oxidizes rapidly on exposure to the atmosphere, it should be preserved under naphtha.

It occurs in small quantity in association with iron in meteoric stones; with this exception it is not found native. The metal may be obtained by the reduction of its sesquioxide by carbon at an extreme heat.

Manganese forms no less than six different oxides—viz., protoxide, sesquioxide the red oxide, the binoxide or peroxide, manganic acid, and permanganic acid. The protoxide occurs as olive-green powder, and is obtained by igniting carbonate of manganese in a current of hydrogen. Its salts are colorless, or of a pale rose color, and have a strong tendency to form double salts with the salts of ammonia. The carbonate forms the mineral known as manganese spar. The sulphate is obtained by heating the peroxide with sulphuric acid till there is faint ignition, dissolving the residue in water and crystallizing. It is employed largely in calico printing. The silicate occurs in various minerals.

The sesquioxide is found crystallized in an anhydrous form in braunite, and hydrated in manganite. It is obtained artificially as a black powder by exposing the peroxide to a prolonged heat. When ignited it loses oxygen, and is converted into red oxide. Its salts are isomorphous with those of alumina and sesquioxide of iron. It imparts a violet color to glass, and gives the amethyst its characteristic tint. Its sulphate is a powerful oxidizing agent.

The red oxide corresponds to the black oxide of iron. It occurs native in hausmannite, and may be obtained artificially by igniting the sesquioxide or peroxide in the open air. It is a compound of the two preceding oxides.

The binoxide, or peroxide, is the black manganese of commerce, and the pyrolusite of mineralogists, and is by far the most abundant of the manganese ores. It occurs in a hydrated form in varvicite and wad. Its commercial value depends upon the proportion of chlorine which a given weight of it will liberate when it is heated with hydrochloric acid, the quantity of chlorine being proportional to the excess of oxygen which this oxide contains over that contained in the same weight of protoxide. When mixed with chloride of sodium and sulphuric acid it causes an evolution of chlorine, the other resulting products being sulphate of soda and sulphate of protoxide of manganese. When mixed with acids, it is a valuable oxidizing agent. It is much used for the preparation of oxygen, either by simply heating it, when it yields 12 per cent. of gas, or by heating it with sulphuric acid, when it yields 18 per cent. Besides its many uses in the laboratory, it is employed in the manufacture of glass, porcelain, and kindred wares.

Manganic acid is not known in a free state. Manganate of potash is formed by fusing together hydrated potash and binoxide of manganese. The black mass which results from this operation is soluble in water, to which it communicates a green color, due to the presence of the manganate. From this water the salt is obtained in vacuo in beautiful green crystals. On allowing the solution to stand exposed to the air, it rapidly becomes blue, violet, purple, and finally red, by the gradual conversion of the manganate into the permanganate of potash; and on account of these changes of color the black mass has received the name of mineral chameleon.

Permanganic acid is only known in solution or in a state of combination. Its solution is of a splendid red color, but appears of a dark violet tint when seen by transmitted light. It is obtained by treating a solution of permanganate of baryta with sulphuric acid, when sulphate of baryta falls, and the permanganic acid remains dissolved in the water. Permanganate of potash, which crystallizes in reddish purple prisms, is the most important of its salts. It is largely employed in analytical chemistry, and is the basis of Condy's Disinfectant Fluid.

Manganese is a constituent of many mineral waters, and is found in small quantities in the ash of most vegetables and animal substances. It is always associated with iron.

Various preparations of manganese have been employed in medicine. The sulphate of the protoxide in doses of one or two drachms produces purgative effects, and is supposed to increase the excretion of bile; and in small doses, both this salt and the carbonate have been given with the intention of improving the condition of the blood in cases of anaemia. Manganic acid and permanganate of potash are of great use when applied in lotions (as in Condy's Fluid diluted) to foul and fetid ulcers. In connection with the medicinal applications of manganese it may be mentioned that manganic acid is the agent employed in Dr. Angus Smith's celebrated test for the impurity of the air.

It is the glass maker's soap of glass manufacture, and is used to correct the green color of glass, which is owing to the presence of protoxide of iron. This it converts into the comparatively colorless peroxide.

It is also used in the Bessemer and similar processes, to decompose the oxide of iron. Spiegeleisen, an iron which contains a natural alloy of from 10 to 12 per cent. of manganese, is used for this purpose when conveniently attainable.—Glassware Reporter.

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OZOKERITE, OR EARTH-WAX.

By WILLIAM L. LAY.

ON THE DEPOSITS OF EARTH WAX (OZOKERITE) IN EUROPE AND AMERICA.

[Footnote: Abstract from a paper read before the New York Academy of Sciences.]

There exists a large mining and manufacturing industry in Austria, that of ozokerite, or earth-wax, which has nothing like it in any other part of the known world, an industry that supplies Europe with a part of its beeswax, without the aid of the bees. It may not be generally known that the mining of petroleum was a profitable industry in Austria long before it was in this country. In 1852, a druggist near Tarnow distilled the oil and had an exhibit of it in the first World's Fair in London. In America, the first borings were made in 1859. Indeed, the use of petroleum as an illuminator was common at a very early age in the world's history. In Persia at Baku, in India on the Irawada, also in the Crimea, and on the river Kuban in Russia, petroleum has been used in lamps for thousands of years. At Baku the fire worshipers have a never-ceasing flame, which has burned from time immemorial. The mines of ozokerite are located in Austrian Poland, now known as Galicia. Near the city of Drohabich, on the railway line running from Cracow to Lemberg, is a town of six thousand inhabitants, called Borislau, which is entirely supported by the ozokerite industry. It lies at the foot of the Carpathian Mountains. About the year 1862, a shaft was sunk for petroleum at that place. After descending about one hundred and eighty feet, the miners found all the cracks in the clay or rock filled with a brown substance, resembling beeswax. At first, the layers were not thicker than writing paper; but they grew thicker gradually below, until at a depth of three hundred feet they attained a thickness of three or four inches. Upon examination, it was found that a yellow wax could be made of a portion of this substance, and at once a substitute for wax was manufactured.

The discovery caused an excitement like the oil fever of 1865 in America. A large number of leases were made. When I saw the wells of Pennsylvania, in 1879, there were more than two thousand. The owner of the land received one-fourth of the product, and the miners three-fourths. In the petroleum region, the leases at first were whole farms, then they were reduced to 20, then 10, then 5, and at last to 1 acre, which is a square of 209 feet.

But in the ozokerite region of Poland, where everything is done on a small scale, when compared with like enterprises in this country, the leases were on tracts thirty-two feet square. These were so small that the surface was not large enough to contain the earth that had to be raised to sink the shaft; consequently the earth had to be transported to a distance, and, when I saw it, there was a mound sixty or seventy feet high. Its weight had become so great that it caused a sinking of the earth, and endangered the shafts to such an extent that the government ordered its removal to a distance and its deposit on ground that was not undermined. The shafts are four feet square, and the sides are supported by timbers six inches through, which leaves a shaft three feet square. The miner digs the well or shaft just as we dig our water wells, and the dirt and rock are hoisted up in a bucket by a rope and windlass. But one man can work in the shaft at a time. For many years no water was found; but, as there is a deposit of petroleum under the ozokerite, at a depth of six hundred feet from the surface, the miners were troubled with gas. This is got rid of by blowing a current of fresh air from a rotary fan through a pipe extending down the shaft as fast as the curbing of timber is put in place. The ozokerite is embedded in a very stiff blue clay for a depth of several hundred feet; below, it is interlaid with rock. [Specimens of crude and manufactured ozokerite were on exhibition, through the kindness of Dr. J. S. Newberry.]

That part of the earth's surface has more miners' shafts to the acre than any other part of the globe. As wages are very low in Poland, averaging not more than forty cents a day for men and ten cents for children, a very small quantity of ozokerite pays for the working. If thirty or forty pounds a day is obtained, it remunerates the two men and one or two children required to work each lease. When the bucket, containing the earth, rock, and wax, is dumped in the little shed covering the shaft, it is picked over by the children, who detach the wax from the clay or rock with knives. The miners use galvanized wire ropes and wooden buckets. When preparing to descend, they invariably cross themselves and utter a short prayer. The business is not free from danger, carelessness on the part of the boy supplying the fresh air, or the caving in of the unsupported roof, causing a large number of deaths. One of the government inspectors of the mines informed me that in one week there had been eight deaths from accidents.

The ozokerite is taken to a crude furnace, and put into a common cast iron kettle, and melted. This allows the dirt to sink to the bottom, and the ozokerite, freed from all other solids, is skimmed off with a ladle, poured into conical moulds, and allowed to cool, in which form it is sold to the refiners, for about six cents per pound. The quantity produced is uncertain, as the miners take care to understate it, for the reason that the government lays a tax upon all incomes, and the landowner demands his one-fourth of the quantity mined. The best authority is Leo Strippelman, who states the quantity produced in fifteen years at from 375,000,000 to 400,000,000 pounds, worth twenty-four millions of dollars. As the owners of the land get one-fourth of the sum, they received six millions. This is at the rate of four hundred thousand a year, a rather valuable crop from some two hundred acres of land.

The miners do not support the earth by timber or pillars, as they should; the result is that the whole plot of about two hundred acres is gradually sinking, and this will eventually ruin the industry in that part of the deposit. In another part of the same field, a French company has purchased forty acres, and it is mining the whole tract and hoisting through one shaft by steam power. In that shaft they have sunk to a depth of six hundred feet, and are troubled with water and petroleum. These they pump out very much the same way as in coal and other mines, worked in a scientific manner. The thickest layer of ozokerite found is about eighteen inches, and this layer or pocket was a great curiosity. When first removed at the bottom of the shaft, it was found to be so soft that it was shoveled out like putty. During the night it oozed into the space that had been emptied the day before; this continued for weeks, or until the pressure of the gas had become too weak to force it out.

I have been occupied in the petroleum region of Pennsylvania since 1860, have seen all the wonderful development of the oil wells, and was very much interested in contrasting the Austrian ozokerite and petroleum industry with the American. It is a good illustration of the difference between the lower class of Poles and Jews and the Yankee. Borislau, after twenty years' work, was unimproved, dirty, squalid, and brutal. It contained one school house, but no church nor printing office. None of its streets were paved, and, in the main road through the town, the mud came up to the hubs of the wagon wheels for over a mile of its length. In places, plank had to be set up on edge to keep the mud out of the houses, which were lower than the road. It contained numerous shops, where potato whisky was sold to men, women, and children. It depends on a dirty, muddy creek for its supply of water. Its houses were generally one-story, built of logs and mud.

On the other hand, Oil City, a town of the same age and size, contained eight school houses (one a high school building), twelve churches, and two printing offices. It has paved streets, which, in 1863, were as deep with mud as those in Borislau in 1879. It has no whisky shops where women and children can drink. Many of its houses are of brick, two, three, four, and five stories high. Its water works cost one hundred and fifty thousand dollars. All this has been done since 1860, when it did not contain forty houses.

I saw in the market place of Borislau women standing ankle deep in the mud, selling vegetables. One woman really had to build a platform of straw, on which to place a bushel of potatoes; if the straw foundation had not been there, the potatoes would have sunk out of sight. Borislau is three miles from Drohobich, a city of thirty thousand inhabitants; between the two places, in wet weather, the road was impassable. For a third of the way, it was in the bed of the creek; and I had to wait a day for the water to fall so as to navigate it in a wagon. On inquiring why they did not improve the road, I found the same difficulty as the Arkansas settler encountered with his leaky roof; when it rained he could not repair it, and when it was dry it did not need repair: so with the road to Borislau.

Ozokerite (from the Greek words, "Ozein," to smell, and "Keros," wax) is found in Turkistan, east of the Caspian Sea; in the Caucasian Mountains, in Russia; in the Carpathian Mountains, in Austria; in the Apennines, in Italy; in Texas, California, and in the Wahsatch Mountains, in the United States. Commercially, it is not worked anywhere but in Austria; although, I believe, we have in Utah a larger deposit than in any other place. I made two journeys to examine the deposits in the Wahsatch Mountains. For a distance of forty miles, it crops out in many places, and on the Minnie Maud, a stream emptying into the Colorado, I found a stratum of sand rock, from ten to twelve feet thick, filled with ozokerite.

No systematic effort has been made to ascertain the quantity of ozokerite in Utah. I saw a drift of some fourteen feet at one place, and a shaft twenty-three feet deep at another. In this shaft, the vein was about ten inches wide; and it could be traced along the slope of the hill, for several hundred feet. The largest vein of pure ozokerite is seen on Soldiers' Fork of Spanish Canon, which enters Salt Lake Valley near the town of Provo. This vein is very much like the ozokerite of Austria, and contains between thirty and forty per cent. of white ceresin (which resembles bleached beeswax), about thirty per cent. of yellow ceresin (which resembles yellow wax), and twenty per cent. of black petroleum; the residue is dirt. Dr. J. S. Newberry, of Columbia College, and Prof. S. B. Newberry, of Cornell University, made examinations of the ozokerite found in Utah; those who are interested in the subject will find the papers published in the Engineering and Mining Journal for the year 1879.

A deposit of white ozokerite occurs on the top of the Apennine Mountains, in Italy, of which a specimen is here exhibited. An interesting story is told of its discovery. A church at Modena was robbed; among other articles taken was a quantity of wax candles. A short time afterward, a woman brought to a druggist a quantity of wax and offered it for sale. The druggist bought it and afterward suspected it consisted of the stolen candles melted down. Soon after ward she brought another lot. He had her arrested. When questioned by the magistrate, she said she found the wax in the clay on her farm, about twenty miles from the city. This story confirmed him in the belief that she had stolen the candles, or was the receiver of the stolen goods; for such a thing as a deposit of wax in the soil was unheard of. She was therefore remanded to jail. On three several days, she was brought before the court, and, when questioned, told the same story. She was a member of the church, and requested the priest to be sent for. He came, and, after an interview between them, he said it was easy to disprove her story, if it was a lie, by sending her home, in company with an officer, to investigate. The court sent the priest, who was the only one who believed her. On coming to her house, she took her pick and shovel, and going to the place at the top of the hill, she dug out of the clay a quantity of while ozokerite, proved her case, and was at once set at liberty. She performed the same service for me, and I saw her dig the specimen and heard her tell the story as I have told it to you. The hill was composed of loose clay and stones. It appeared as if it had been forced up by gas or some power from below the surface. The quantity that could be gathered, by one person, laboring constantly for a week, was only twenty-five or thirty pounds. An attempt had been made to sink a shaft; but, at a depth of fourteen feet, the pressure of the clay was sufficient to break the boards that held up the sides. The earth caved in, and the shaft was abandoned.

It is not necessary here to describe the various processes of manufacture; it will be sufficient to enumerate some of the forms of ozokerite, and the uses to which it is put. At Borislau, there are several refineries, where candles, tapers, and lubricating oils are made. In Vienna, there are five factories; in one of these, they make white wax, wax candles, matches, yellow beeswax, black heel-ball, colored tapers, and crayon pencils. In Europe, large quantities of the yellow wax are used to wax the floors of the houses, many of the finer ones being waxed every day. It is a curious fact that the Catholic Church does not allow the use of paraffine, sperm, or stearine candles; at the same time nearly all the candles used in the churches in Europe are made from ozokerite, which is a natural paraffine, made from petroleum in nature's laboratory. In the United States, the only uses made of ozokerite, so far as I know, are chewing gum and the adulteration of beeswax. In this the Yankee gives another illustration of the ruling passion strong in money making, which gives us wooden nutmegs, wooden hams, shoddy cloth, glucose candy, chiccory coffee, oleomargarine butter, mineral sperm oil made from petroleum, and beeswax made without bees.

After this paper was written, the following translation from a pamphlet, published by the First Hungarian Galician Railway Company, in 1879, came to my notice. The writer's name is not published:

"Mineral wax, in the condition in which it is taken from the shafts, is not well adapted for exportation, since it occurs with much earthy matter; and, at any rate, an expensive packing in sacks would be necessary. It is therefore first freed from all foreign substances by melting, and cooled in conical cakes of about 25 kilos. weight, and these cakes are exported. There are now, in Borislau, 25 melting works, which, in 1877, with 1 steam and 60 fire kettles, produced 95,000 metric centners (9,500,000 lb.).

"The melted earth wax is sent from Borislau to almost all European countries, to be further refined. Outside of Austro-Hungary, we may specially mention Germany, England, Italy, France, Belgium, and Russia as large purchasers of this article of commerce.

"PRODUCTS AND THEIR APPLICATIONS.

"The products of mineral wax, are:

"(a.) Ceresine, also called ozocerotine or refined ozokerite, a product which possesses a striking resemblance to ordinarily refined beeswax. It replaces this in almost all its uses, and, by its cheapness, is employed for many purposes for which beeswax is too dear. It is much used for wax candles, for waxing floors, and for dressing linen and colored papers. Wax crayons must be mentioned among these products. The house of Offenheim & Ziffer, in Elbeteinitz, makes them of many colors. These crayons are especially adapted to marking wood, stone, and iron; also, for marking linen and paper, as well as for writing and drawing. The writings and drawings made with these crayons can be effaced neither by water, by acids, nor by rubbing.

"Concerning the technical process for the production of ceresine, it should be said that, when the industry was new (the production of ceresine has been known only about eight years, since 1874), it was controlled by patents, which are kept secret. This much is known, that the color and odor are removed by fuming sulphuric acid.

"From mineral wax of good quality about 70 per cent. of white ceresine is obtained. The yellow ceresine is tinted by the addition of coloring matter (annatto).

"(b.) Paraffine, a firm, white, translucent substance, without odor. It is used, chiefly, in the manufacture of candles, and also as a protection against the action of acids, and to make casks and other wooden vessels water-tight, for coating corks, etc., for air-tight wrappings, and, finally, for the preparation of tracing paper. There are several methods of obtaining paraffine from ozokerite (see the Encyclopedic Handbook of Chemistry, by Benno Karl and F. Strohmann, vol. iv., Brunswick, 1877).

"The details of the technical process consists, in every case, in the distillation of the crude material, pressure of the distillate by hydraulic presses, melting, and treating by sulphuric acid.

"In the manufacture of paraffine from ozokerite, there are produced from 2 to 8 per cent. of benzine, from 15 to 20 per cent. of naphtha, 36 to 50 per cent. of paraffine, 15 to 20 per cent. of heavy oil for lubricating, and 10 to 20 per cent. of coke, as a residue.

"(c.) Mineral oils, which are obtained at the same time with paraffine, and are the same as those produced from crude petroleum, described above. The process consists, as in the natural rock oils, besides the distillation, in the treatment of the incidental products with acids and alkalies.

"Of the products of ozokerite, manufactured in Galicia, the greater part goes to Russia, Roumania, Turkey, Italy, and Upper Hungary. The common paraffine candles made in Galicia—which are of various sizes, from 28 to 160 per kilo—are used by the Jews in all Galicia, Bukowuina, Roumania, Upper Hungary, and Southern Russia, and form an important article of commerce. Ceresine is exported to all the ports of the world. Of late a considerable quantity is said to have been sent to the East Indies, where it is used in the printing of cotton."

The President, Dr. J. S. Newberry, stated that ozokerite was undoubtedly a product of petroleum. Little was known by the public concerning its use and value. He exhibited specimens of natural brown ozokerite, of yellow ozokerite, sold as beeswax, and of a white purified form, which had been treated by sulphuric acid. Specimens from Utah had already been shown before the Academy. There was no mystery as to its genesis in either region, as it had been shown to be the result of inspissation of a thick and viscid variety of petroleum. The term "petroleum" includes a great variety of substances, from a limpid liquid, too light to burn, to one that is thick and tarry. These differ widely also in chemical composition: some yielding much asphalt by distillation, resembling a solution of asphalt in turpentine; some containing so much paraffine that a considerable quantity can be strained out in cold weather. The asphalt in its natural form is a solid rock, to which the term "gum beds" has been applied in Canada. These differences in constitution have originated in the differences in the bituminous shales from which the petroleum, ozokerite, etc., have been derived. In Canada, as excavations are sunk through the asphalt, this becomes softer and softer, and finally passes into petroleum. This is also the case in Utah.

* * * * *

[Concluded from SUPPLEMENT No. 400, page 6390.]

[KANSAS CITY REVIEW.]



THE SOLAR ECLIPSE OF MAY 6, 1883.

Professor C. S. Hastings, of the Johns Hopkins University, also includes many interesting details in his account of the trip:

The voyage from New York to Panama was pleasant with the exception of a few hot days near Aspinwall. Somewhat further south the wind changed, obliging them to call their overcoats from the bottom of their trunks to keep out the cold when crossing the equator. During a short stop in Lima the party had an opportunity of studying South American life. The products of this country are fruits and photographs of the young women. The party enjoyed both eating the former and bringing the latter home for the admiration of their friends. The expedition really began at Callao, where the party embarked on the United States man-of-war Hartford. Few circumstances contributed more to the enjoyment of the trip than the lucky chance which threw this vessel in their way. The Hartford was fitted out last August as flag ship of the South Pacific squadron. The admiral had not yet removed his flag to the vessel, but the extra accommodations provided for him and his train condoned the dignity lost by his absence. On March 22 they weighed anchor for a sail of more than four thousand miles over the blue ocean which stretches between Callao and their destination, Caroline Island. The southeast trade winds favored them, and from the first day there was actually no necessity for altering the position of a sail....

The inhabitants—five men, one woman and two children, according to the eclipse census—are natives of Tahiti. The houses are one story structures with clapboard sides, probably cut out in California and brought out in ships, to be erected on this island. The island on which they are built is about three-fourths of a mile in diameter and nearly circular in outline. The edge, which rises from five to twenty inches from the water, according to the tide's phase, goes down under the water to an even table of coral running out many feet into the sea; and is impossible to step on it with bare feet. At the end of this table the reef goes down perpendicularly, a sheer precipice, into the unfathomable sea. No vessel can anchor here, and to make a landing was an exciting matter. The island was approached in small boats on the side sheltered from the wind, and here, with the luck which characterized the trip, was found the only opening in this barrier of coral. A long cleft, perhaps eight feet wide, at the outer edge of the reef, ran in, narrowing to a mere crack near the shore. Watching a favorable chance, the boats were guided through the surf into a cleft as far as shoal water, when the men jumped on to the reef and carried baggage and instruments ashore as quickly as possible. The boats, which were new when they entered the surf, came out much the worse for wear, and the boat in which Dr. Hastings landed was stove in. Once on shore, life became a succession of wonders, rivaling the tales of Gulliver, and needing the conscientious descriptions of exact scientists to make them credible.

The members of the observing party took up their abode in the larger of the three houses, sleeping in swinging cots slung from the verandas, which afforded shade on three sides of the building. The second house was occupied by the sailors, while the third was left to the natives. These latter were sufficiently conversant with English to serve as excellent guides. Each day the party bathed in a lagoon in the center of the island. This lagoon was bordered by a beach of dazzling white coral sand, and all through its water extended reefs of living coral of the more delicate and elaborate kinds. These corals gave the lake a wonderful variety of colors, forming a picture impossible to paint or describe, and with the least ripple from a passing breeze the whole scene changed to new groups of color. The water was very clear, and in some places deep; in others so filled with coral that a boat could barely skim over the surface without scraping the keel. After crossing a long reef, one day, they entered on a sheet of water so deep that their longest line would not reach the bottom, plainly visible beneath. Fish swarmed here, and it was characteristic of them that every species, if not brilliantly colored, was marked in the most peculiar manner. One variety which frequented the shallow water, where it was heated to the degree uncomfortable to the touch, was a pure milky white, with black eyes, fins, and tail.

The French party arrived two days after the Americans. They had steamed directly from Panama with the hope of anticipating the Americans.

It rained on the morning of the eclipse, but cleared off in good time, and the definition was particularly good. Photographs occupied the time of the English and French observers. Professor Holden and Dr. Dickson searched for intra-mercurial planets; Mr. Preston took the times of contact; Dr. Hastings and Mr. Rockwell devoted their attention to spectroscopic observations of the corona. Dr. Hastings' observations have led to the production of a new theory of the corona. Briefly stated, the theory is that the light seen around the sun during a total eclipse is not due to a material substance enveloping the sun, but is a phenomenon of diffraction.

From his observation during the eclipse of 1878, made at Central City, Dr. Hastings conceived the first idea of this explanation of the solar corona. Further study served to convince him of the truth of this theory, but he had no means of proving it. Before the present eclipse, however, he devised a crucial test of his theory. This test is based on the following already known phenomena: When the moon covers the face of the sun, an envelope of light is seen all round it; the envelope is not visible when the sun is shining, on account of the sun's greater brightness; this light is called the corona; it is extremely irregular in outline. According to the drawing of Mr. J. E. Keeler at the eclipse of 1878, it enveloped the sun as a hazy glow, extending for a distance of several minutes of arc from the sun's limb and at two nearly opposite points is extended out in two long streamers feathering off into space. The opinion has been that this light was due to an atmosphere extending millions of miles from the sun. According to Dr. Hastings' view, it must be light from the sun which has undergone refraction, i.e., which has been bent from its regular course by the interposition of an opaque body like the moon.

In order to make this perfectly plain, suppose the front of a surface of waves of any sort to be striking an object which resists them. If an organ of sense is placed in the resisting object, it will judge the direction of the waves or the direction of the object producing them by a line at right angles with the wave front. Now suppose a body is placed between the body producing the waves and the sensitive organ. The waves must go around this body and will produce an eddy behind it, so that the wave front will have a different direction, and the organ of sense will conceive the origin of the waves to lie in a direction different from that before the body was interposed. Now consider the waves to be waves of light, and their origin the sun. The organ of sense is the retina of the eye. The moon is the opaque body interposed in the course of the waves, and they, being bent, make the impression on the eye that the light comes from beyond the edge of the sun. The moon covers the sun during the eclipse and a little more, so that it can move for about five minutes and still cover the sun entirely. This movement is very slight, and if the corona consists of light from a solar atmosphere, it should not change at all during this movement of the moon. But if diffraction is the cause of the light, then the slightest change in the relative positions of the sun and the moon should change the configuration of the corona, i.e., the corona should not remain exactly the same during a total eclipse. The character of the light as shown by a spectrum analysis should change.

To determine this point Dr. Hastings invented the following instrument: Two lozenge-shaped prisms of glass were fastened in the form of a letter V, and so arranged that all the light falling within the aperture of the V was lost, and that falling on the ends of the glass prisms was transmitted by a series of reflections to the apex of the V, where the prisms touched; here was placed a refracting prism, so that the light could be analyzed. This instrument was attached to the eye piece of the telescope, and the image of the eclipse reduced to such a size that the moon just fitted into the aperture of the V, while opposite sides of the corona were reflected through the prisms to the place where they came together. In this way both sides of the corona were seen through the eye-piece at the same time. On looking at the eclipse this is what Dr. Hastings saw: The light of the corona was divided into its constituents. Prominent among them was a bright green line, which is designated by the number 1,474; to this line attention was directed. Its presence in the spectrum has been an argument in favor of the view that the corona is a solar atmosphere. If this is the case, the line should remain fixed during the eclipse; but if the corona is due to diffraction, this line should change. It should grow shorter in the light from one side of the corona, and longer on the other. The observation was now reduced to watching for a change in the relative length of two green lines.

At the beginning of totality the line from the west side was much the longer, but as the eclipse progressed it shortened notably, while the line from the east side, shorter by about one-third at the beginning of the eclipse, grew longer. When the eclipse ended, the proportions of the lines were exactly reversed. There had been a change equal to two-thirds the length of the lines, while the sun and moon had only changed their relative positions by an extremely small amount. The only way in which this phenomenon can be accounted for is on the diffraction theory. The material view of the corona will not answer for it. But there are other discrepancies in the older view which have been known for some time. The principal ones are: 1. It is known from study of the sun that the gaseous pressure at the surface must be less than an inch of mercury, and is probably less than one-tenth of an inch, but an atmosphere extending to the supposed limits would cause an enormous pressure at the sun's surface, especially since the force of gravity on the sun is very much greater than on the earth. 2. The laws of gravitation would require a solar atmosphere to be distributed symmetrically around the sun, while the corona is enormously irregular in form. The sun is irregular in outline, which would make its diffracted phenomena show the observed irregularity, but it is symmetrical as regards density. 3. The most interesting discrepancy of the theory of the solar atmosphere is the fact that while it is supposed to extend for millions of miles from the sun, the recent comet passed within two hundred thousand miles of the sun, and yet its orbit was not affected in the least, as it would have been if it had plowed its way through a material substance. In taking photographs of the corona it is seen to be larger as the time of exposure is longer. This shows that the corona extends indefinitely, and it decreases in brilliancy in exact accordance with the mathematical laws of diffraction. These laws involve very complicated mathematics, but by them alone Dr. Hastings has proved that there must be diffraction where the corona is, and that it must follow the same laws as those observed. There is a small envelope around the sun, but in the opinion of Dr. Hastings it does not extend beyond what is known as the chromosphere.

* * * * *

The question seems to be settled, with considerable certainty, that nothing exists inside of Mercury large enough to be dignified by the name of planet. There may be, and there probably are, for the perturbations of Mercury indicate it, multitudes of small masses circulating around the sun like the planets, being fragments of comets or condensations of primitive matter, whose combined luster is seen in the zodiacal light.

The other results of the work of the Commission, so far as now known, are connected with the structure of the corona, the solar appendage which extends out for millions of miles from the sun's disk. In the photographs of the Egyptian eclipse of last summer these streamers can be traced back of each other where they cross; no better proof of their extreme tenuity could be given.

The duration of an eclipse of the sun depends on three things, the distance of the sun from the earth, the distance of the moon from the earth, and the distance of the station from the equator. All of these were favorable to a long eclipse in the case of the recent one, and the six minutes of totality gave opportunities for deliberate work not often enjoyed.

* * * * *



A BURIED CITY OF THE EXODUS.

The excavations at Tell-el-Maskhutah, of which illustrations are given, have resulted in some of the most interesting and important discoveries that have ever rewarded the labors of archaeologists. The idea of founding an English society for the purpose of exploring the buried cities of the Delta originated with Miss A. B. Edwards, the well-known authoress of "One Thousand Miles up the Nile," and was carried into effect mainly by her own efforts and the energy and zeal of Mr. Reginald Stuart Poole, of the British Museum, aided by the substantial support of Sir Erasmus Wilson, without whose munificent donations the work could never have been accomplished. The "Egypt Exploration Fund," thus founded and maintained, was fortunate in securing the co-operation of M. Naville, the distinguished Swiss Egyptologist, who set out for Egypt in January of this year with the object of conducting the explorations contemplated by the society. After a consultation with M. Maspero, the Director of Archaeology in Egypt, who has throughout acted a friendly part toward the society's enterprise, M. Naville decided to begin his campaign by attacking the mounds at Tell-el-Maskhutah, on the Freshwater Canal, a few miles from Ismailia. The mounds of earth here were known to cover some ancient city, for some sphinxes and statues had already been found; but what city it could be, archaeologists were at a loss to determine; though some, with Professor Lepsius at their head, believed it to be none other than the Rameses or "Raamses," which the Children of Israel built for Pharaoh, and whence they started on their final Exodus. Any identification, however, of the sites of the Biblical cities in Egypt was so far merely speculative. Practically nothing definite was known as to the geography of the Israelite sojourn, except that the Land of Goshen was undoubtedly in the eastern part of the Delta, and that Zoan was Tanis, whose immense mounds are to form the next subject of the society's operations. The route of the Exodus was as uncertain as everything else connected with Israel's sojourn in Egypt. What sea they crossed, and where, and by what direction they journeyed to it, remained vexed questions, although Dr. Brugsch had set up a plausible theory, in which the "Serbonian Bog" played an important part.



Six weeks of steady digging at Tell-el-Maskhutah, under M. Naville's skillful direction, placed all these speculations in quite a new light. The city under the mounds proved to be none other than Pithom, the "store" or "treasure city" which the Children of Israel "built for Pharaoh" (Exod. i. 11). Its character as a store place or granary is seen in its construction; for the greater part of the area is covered with strongly built chambers, without doors, suitable for the storing of grain, which would be introduced through trap doors in the floor above, of which the ends of the beams are still visible. These curious chambers, unique in their appearance, are constructed of large, well made bricks, sometimes mixed with straw, sometimes without it, dried in the sun, and laid with mortar, with great regularity and precision. The walls are 10 ft. thick, and the thickness of the inclosing wall which runs round the whole city is more than 20 ft. In one corner was the temple, dedicated to the god Tum, and hence called Pe-tum or Pithom, the "Abode of Tum." Only a few statues, groups, and tablets (some of which have been presented to the British Museum) remained to testify to its name and purpose; the temple itself was finally destroyed when the Romans turned Pithom into a camp, as is shown by the position of the limestone fragments and of the Roman bricks. The statues, however, and especially a large stele, are extremely valuable, since they tell the history of the city during eighteen centuries. From a study of these monuments, M. Naville has learned that Pithom was its sacred, and Thukut (Succoth) its civil, name; that it was founded by Rameses II., restored by Shishak and others of the twenty-second dynasty; was an important place under the Ptolemies, who set up a great stele to commemorate the founding of the city of Arsinoe in the neighborhood; was called Hero or Herooepolis by the Greeks (a name derived from the hieroglyphic ara, meaning a "store house"), and Ero Castra by the Romans, who occupied it at all events as late as A.D. 306. Indications are also found of the position of Pihahiroth, where the Israelites encamped before the passage of the "Reedy Sea," and of Clysma. All these data are directly contradictory to preconceived theories: Pithom, Succoth, Herooepolis, Pihahiroth, and Clysma had all been hypothetically placed in totally different positions. The identification of Pithom with Succoth gives us the first absolutely certain point as yet established in the route of the Exodus, and completely overthrows Dr. Brugsch's theory. It is now certain that the Israelites passed along the valley of the Freshwater Canal and not near the Mediterranean and Lake Serbonis. The first definite geographical fact in connection with the sojourn in the Land of Egypt has been established by the excavations at Pithom. The historical identification of Rameses II. with Pharaoh the oppressor also results from the monumental evidence. One short exploration has upset a hundred theories and furnished a wonderful illustration of the historical character of the Book of Exodus. The finding of Pithom (Succoth) is, however, only the beginning, we hope, of a series of important discoveries. When enough money has been collected for the proposed exploration of Zoan (Tanis), results of the highest interest to students alike of the Bible and of Egyptian antiquities may, with certainty, be predicted.

The uppermost view shows a portion of the diggings; a workman is bringing up a barrow-load of soil from one of the deep store chambers which the Children of Israel built more than three thousand years ago. In the foreground lie the fragments of a fallen granite statue, the head and face of which are intact. The other illustration is taken from the temple end of the excavations. The sculptured group of Rameses the Great seated between divinities is one of a pair that adorned the entrance; its companion and the sphinxes that guarded the pylon are at Ismailia. Beyond this group, and a little to the left, is seen the great Stele of Pithom, set up by Ptolemy Philadelphus and Arsinoe, and containing a mass of important information in its long hieroglyphic inscriptions. Behind this, and on either side, the massive brick walls of the store chambers and the inclosing wall of the temple can be traced; while on the right hand, in the middle distance, is a heap of limestone blocks, already collected by Rameses II. for the completion or enlargement of the temple. The excavations were photographed for M. Naville, by Herr Emil Brugsch, of the Boulak Museum, and our illustrations are taken from these photographs, supplemented by sketches.—S.L.P., in Illustrated London News.

* * * * *



THE MOABITE MANUSCRIPTS.

The surprises of archaeology are magnificent and apparently inexhaustible. It is continually bringing forth things new and old, and often it happens that the newest are the oldest of all. Whether this or the exact converse is the case in regard to the latest discovery of Biblical archaeology is a question not to be determined offhand; but the interest and importance of the question can hardly be overrated. There are now deposited in the British Museum fifteen leather slips, on the forty folds of which are written portions of the Book of Deuteronomy in a recension entirely different from that of the received text. The character employed in the manuscript is similar to that of the famous Moabite stone and of the Siloam inscription, and, therefore, the mere palaeographical indication should give the probable date of the slips as the ninth century B. C., or sixteen centuries earlier than any other clearly authenticated manuscript of any portion of the Old Testament. The sheepskin slips are literally black with age, and are impregnated with a faint odor as of funeral spices; the folds are from 6 to 7 inches long and about 31/2 inches wide, containing each about ten lines, written only on one side.

So far as they have yet been deciphered, they exhibit two distinct handwritings, though the same archaic character is used throughout. In some cases the same passages of Deuteronomy occur in duplicate on distinct slips, as though the fragments belonged to two contemporary transcriptions made by different scribes from the same original text. At first sight no writing whatever is perceptible; the surface seems to be covered with an oily or glutinous substance, which so completely obscures the writing beneath that a photograph of some of the slips—which we have had an opportunity of examining side by side with the slips themselves—exhibits no trace of the text. But when the leather is moistened with spirits of wine the letters become momentarily visible beneath the glossy surface.

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