Robert Smith.

The Friend : a religious and literary journal (Volume 16) online

. (page 99 of 154)
Online LibraryRobert SmithThe Friend : a religious and literary journal (Volume 16) → online text (page 99 of 154)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook


with a heavier tube than the one before allu-
ded to, gathered a considerable quantity of
metal; whirled it twice or thrice round his
head, to elongate the mass, rolled it on a flat
iron plate; to give it a regular shape; and
blew through the tube from the other end, to
make the glass hollow. The rolling and
blowing having been repeated two or three
limes, another workman received it, and sat
down in a chair having two flat parallel arms
sloping downwards. Then, resting the tube
on these arms, he rolled it backwards and for-
wards, to keep the glass from bending ; and a
boy, stooping down at the other end, blew
through the tube, whereby the mass of glass
was maintained hollow. By the aid of an elas-
tic instrument, sha|)ed nearly like sugar-longs,
the workman brought the mass into form,
rolling the tube continually, and healing the
glass frequently to preserve the proper con-
sistence. Another workman, called the " fool-
er," then brought a little melted glass on the
end of a rod, and applied it to the end of the
blown mass, to which it instantly adhered.
This was soon shaped into a foot ; and the
whole was transferred from the tube to a rod
called the " punty," the latter being made to
adhere to the foot of the vessel by a liltk
n)elted glass, and the tube being detached by
a touch with a piece of cold iron at its junc-
tion with the glass. The glass thus trans-
ferred, the making of the upper part of the
vessel proceeded. VV ith the aid of scissors, a
piece of glowing glass was cut off", so as to
allow of a depression for the lip of the jug, and
the edge was bent and curved with a dexterity
altogether beyond the scope of description.
Sometimes one prong, sometimes both ])rongs
of the tongs were inseried in the month of the
jug, and the internal cavity, as well as the
external surface of the jug, were gradually
modelled into shape. An attendant work-
man next brought a smaller mass of melted
glass on the end of another rod, which was
attached to the vessel, and curved in the



form of a handle by a few delicate mana-u-
yrea. |

The rapidity with which these operations
are eflected almost baffles the eye of a spec- 1
tator. 'J'he glass is in such a medium state !
between a solid anil a liquid, that w hile, on the
one hand, it would drop from the tube if not |
kept rotatory, it is, on the other, capable of i
being pulled, twisted, stretched, cut, pressed, !
and worked in various ways. No mould, |
stamp or press was employed in the manufac-
ture of this jug, the whole being eflected by !
the manual dexterity and accurate eye of the
workman, aided by a few of the most simple
tools. Great, indeed, is the surprise excited
at seeing such an elegantly-formed vessel
manufactured in such a way in the space of
ten or twelve minutes. The eye of the work-
rn;m detects when the glass is befi.ming loo
cold for working, and he holds il for a few
seconds at the " working-hole," — one of the
pot-mouths. After every such re-healing, he
sits down again, and rolls the tube in the

chair-arms," with the glass projecting over
near his right hand.

(To hii concluded.)



Cultivating Ground without Manure.

The London Gardener's Chronicle, con-
ducted by Professor Lindly, brings to notice
in the following article, the recent discovery
in Germany of a plan of superseding manure in
cullivalion.

Communication on the art of Cultivating the
ground without Manure. By F. H. Dicks,
Frank/ort-on-thc-Maine, 1842, p. 31.

Wondirs will never Cease. — While our
agriculturalists are eagerly discussing the
comparative advantages of particular soils,
and studying the theory of manures as pro-
pounded by Sprengel and Liebig, a country-
man of these distinguished professors conies
forward to proclaim thai their labours are
vain; for, if we are to believe him, he has
discovered the art of growing luxuriant crops
on the poorest land, and without any manure
whatsoever ; and the cost of the process is so
trifling, that, for the acre of wheat or maize,
it does not exceed five pence sterling; and for
rape, cabbage, &c., amounts to only about hall
ihalsum. At first, wewere dispo.sed loconsider
such extraordinary pretensions as an effusior
of quackery, and entitled to little or no credil :
but our incredulity has been .>ioniewhal shaken
by the numerous and respectable attestations
which the author has appended to his pam-
phlet, and which tend to prove that his method
has been practised with success, during the
last twelve years, in various parts of Germany
and Holland. Thus the certificates from Vi-
enna, dated 1829 and 1830, declare that F.
n. Bicks's process, which would seem to con
sist in some preparation of the seed, " renders
all dunging unnecessary, is applicable to the
poorest'soils, and to ali sorts of plants, and
imparts to ihem a wonderful degree of vege-
tation and fullness;" and they gave the re-
sults of the experiments in the imperial garden
of the Chateau ; from which il appears that



wheat raised from seed sown by F. H. Bicks,
had larger ears aitd ntore grains than that
produced from unprepared seed; that the bar-
ley showed ears with four rows, and a larger
number of grains ; while that from unprepared
seed had only two rows, and a smaller propor-
tion of grains on each stalk ; and the Indian
corn exhibited a larger number of much
stronger and thicker heads.

At Budingen, again, some plants of the sun-
flower, treated according to F. H. Bicks's
method, grew to the height of ten or eleven
feet, with woody stems of eight and a half to
nine inches in circumference. I'en or twelve
potatoe plants, of a large yellow sort, called
.Marburger, yielded each, on the average,
thirty good sized tubers, with stem and
branches seven feet long; and maize, which
grew [lartly singly and partly in rows, had
from two to five, and in some instances, as
many as eight and nine heads. These crips
were obtained in the garden of Count Isen-
burg; and we are further assured by the cer-
lificalu, to which are allached.the signatures
of two burgomasters, the court gardener, a
rand ducal counsellnr, and other olficial per-
sonages that they were raised in ground but
partially dressed, and in the midst of tall
weeds! The triiils of this method in Holland,
made in the summer of 1634, were attended
with results not loss astonishing ; prepared
wheat and rye, though sown Ihick, gave from
fifty to sixty, and even eighty stalks from one
grain ; and a plant of barley bore eight large
ears. Buckwheat rose to four and a half and
five feet ; flax had fuur and five stems from one
seed ; and Indian corn grew from nine to tea
feet in height, with fnur to five heads from a
single corn. The green crops were equally
luxuriant."

Leibig's Agricultural Chemistry leaches us
that animonia is the great stinuilant Jo the
growth of plants. At one of the late agricul-
tural meetings in London, Dr. T. C. Jackson
suggested that seeds might be coated with
some gummy substance, and then rolled in
guano, enough of which would readily ad-
here, to pidduce all the eflects ascribed to
those foreign prepared seeds; the new plan
being a secret.

A mere lea-spoonful of gnano, applied to a
newly struck rose cutting of a few inches in
length, had been suflicienl the following spring

10 pioduce a bush of some six feel in height.

11 is the received opinion thai Ihe nourishment
of vegetable life is derived from the atmos-
phere. — Nncark Advertiser.



Ashes on Corn. — I have been in Ihe liabit
of using ashes and plaster on corn, and be-
lieving that ashes are worth the most, I
thought last spring that I would ascertain the
fact.

I therefore left six rows through ihe middle
of my field. No. 1 without plaster or ashes ;
six rows do. No. 2 with plaster in the hill, and
on Ihe corn ; do. six rows No. 3, with ashes
in Ihe hill ; six do. No. 4, with ashes and
plaster in Ihe hill ; six do. No. 5, ashes and
plaster in the hill, and on the corn after the
first hoeing ; the quantity used was about a



THE rRlEND.



table-spoonful to each hill. The rows were
long enough to contain one quarter of an
acre each six rows. The result was —

No. 1 had 22 bushels ears.

No. 2 do. 24 do.

No. 3 do. 26 do.

No. 4 do. 26 do.

No. .5 do. 31 do.

The field was marked out three feet each
way, and the cultivator used each way and
hoed twice. Thus you see No. 1 would yield
at the rate of forty-four bushels per acre, and
No. 5, sixty-two bushels per acre, which I
should think about an average with the rest of
the field. The soil is a sandy loam mixed
with limestone gravel. The corn crop in this
vicinity is a light one, 1 siiould think two-
thirds or three-fourths of a common crop. I
do not wish to be understood that plaster is of
no benefit to land, for I believe it is very bene,
ficial. I believe if farmers would apply theii
ashes to their land it would net iheni one hun-
dred per cent., in the room of ten or twelve.
If you think these remarks are worth pub-
lishing, do with them as you see fit. — N. V.
Farmer.



Progress of English Orihogra/ihy. — By
looking into the English Hexapla, or six prin-
cipal versions of our English New Testament,
we find the following variations in the 13lh
and 14th verses of the 2d ciiapter of Luke,
which is curious as showing the changes in
the spelling of words and the use of capital
letters, which occur in the course of a few cen
turies. The changes in the shape and fio-urt
of the letters are not less great, but we have
not the types to exhibit them.
WicUf—lSSO.

and sudeynli there was maJe with th
aungel a multitude of heuenly kayghthod
herying god and seiynge, glorie be in the
highest thingis to god . and in erthe pees be
to men of good will.

Tyiidale—ld-.H.
And streight waye ther was with the angell
a multitude of hevenly sowders, laudynge
God and saying : Glory to God on bye, and
peace on the earth : and vnto men reioysyn-
guge.

Rheims — 1557.
And strayghtway there was with the Angel
a multitude of heauenly soldiers, lauding
God, and saying Glorie be to God in the bye
heauens, and peace in earth, and towards men
good wyl.

Geneva — 1583.
And sodenly there was with the Angel a
multitude of the heauenly armie, praising
God, and saying, Glorie in the highest to God:
and in earth peace to men of good will.
Authorized — 1611.
And suddenly there was with the Angel a
multitude of the heauenly hoste praysing God,
and saying Glory to God in the highest, and
on earth peace, good wil towards men.
Modern Testament.
And suddenly there was with the anoel a



multitude of the heavenly host praising God,
and saying. Glory to God in the highest, and
on earth peace, good will towards men.



Researches concerning the Periodical Meteors
of August and November. — By Sears C.
Walker, A. P. S. Read January 15th,
1841, [before the American Philosophical
Society, at Philadelphia, and published in
their I'ransaclions.] Philadelphia, 4lo.
pp. 53.

The last nuinber of the North American
Review has a well written article under the
above caption. It might not be expedient to
occupy so much space in " The Friend" as
would be requisite to follow the writer through
all the philosophical and speculative discussion
to which the subject gives rise; but the fol-
lowing condensed and clear view with which
the article commences of the magnificent
meteoric display of 1833, so exciting at the
lime, and which must yet be in the vivid re-
collection of many, will, no doubt, be read

th interest.

The falling star is so familiar to us that it
rarely attracts more than a passing notice ;
and the attempt to define, distinguish from one
another, and classify, such fleeting phenomena
has appeared a hopeless undertaking, and has
only very recently been made with regular
and systematic zeal. Crude hypotheses, at-
mospheric, volcanic, selenitic, and cosmical,
had long been afloat in men's minds; it had
been conjectured that they might be gaseous
explosions, electrical sparks aerolites, or
"world-chips." Light and flighty enough
for entertaining academic discussion, they
could not, however, command the careful
research of earnest inquirers, until there was
good reason to believe that they were not of
the class of the inconstant ignes fatui. A
multitude of speculations might be enumer-
ated, but so weak and ill-supported that a sin-
gle fact is enough to disperse them. At the
very close of the last century, two college lads,
Brandes and Benzenberg, students of Gottin-
gen, instituted a series of exact observations,
from which it appeared that these meteors
move through the air with the average velo-
city of twenty miles in a second, as swiftly as
he earth in its orbit. This astonishing velo-
city, which has been confirmed by Brandes's
later observations in 1823, Quetelet's in 1824,
Twining's in November of 1833, and Bogus-
lawski's in 1836 and 1837, but which is only
one-tenth part of the speed, according to
VVartmann's determination in 1838, is alto-
gether too great to have originated in any
volcanic eruption, either lunar or terrestrial,
or from any conceivable explosion, while it is
much too small to be attributed to electricity.
It seems, therefore, sufficient of itself to make
a clear opening for the cosmical view, although
it would be most presumptuous, upon this iso-
ted fact, to build a complicated theory, and
to fill space with myriads of little planets. It
was also inferred from these diflerent observa-
tions, that the velocity was not the same for
all the meteors, but that it ranged from ten to



267

two hundred and fifty miles per second, the
least velocity being too great to belong to a
satellite of the earth, and the greatest being
tenfold more than that which would suffice to
throw a body out of the region of the sun's
influence. The height of the meteors, more-
over, was found to vary from six to seven
hundred miles. No common character, in
short, of any theoretical importance, was de-
tected, and no principle established, which
could serve as a means of classification. But,
belbre some of these observations were made,
a fortunate occurrence, skilfully improved, led
to the discovery of such a principle, and, in
1833, a new view of the meteoric phenomena
emanated from New Haven, which has since
attracted the serious attention of the whole
scientific world.

The great meteoric display of November,
1833, which was the occasion of these recent
investigations, was one of the most sublime
showers of fire of which we find any record
in history. " Above, and all around the fir-
mament," says an observer in Missouri,
" thicker than the stars themselves, which
were imcommonly bright, large, and beautiful,
we beheld innumerable fire- balls, of a pallid
colour, rushing down, and, to appearance,
across the sky, drawing after them long lumi-
nous traces, which clothed the whole heaven
in iTiajesty, and gave the air and earth a pale
and death-like appearance." "It would be

difficult," said Aikin, of Maryland, "for

one who had not witnessed the grand exhibi-
tion, to conceive the eficct of this uninterrupt-
ed succession of innumerable meteors, proceed-
ing from a point so nearly vertical towards
the whole circumference of the horizon, and
this, too, during the stillness of night, and with
an atmosphere perfectly transparent. It could
only be compared to one grand and continued
discharge of fireworks, occupying the whole
visible heavens." An observer in Georgia,
also, witnessed the phenomenon, and described
it, but in such glowing language, that we
quote only two sentences, in which the most
remarkable of the meteors is particularly des-
cribed.

" By far the most brilliant one which we
saw, occurred at a kv/ minutes past five in the
morning, and seemed to announce, by its splen-
dor, the/nu/e of this grand exhibition of fire-
works in the heavens. It seemed to pursue,
as near as we could judge, a course from south-
east to north-west, the ball being, apparently,
five or six inches in diameter, with a train of
from thirty to forty feet in length ; the latter
assuming, immediately on the passage of the
meteor, a serpentine form, and dilfusing a light
upon the earth quite equal to that of the full
mooM, and remaining intense at least for forty
or fifty seconds."

James Sperry, at Henrietta, New York,
remarked upon this same meteor, that " it left
a streak of light apparently as broad as the
moon, and extending over at least thirty de-
grees of the arch of the heavens, which was
visible three minutes, shining at first with
such splendor that small objects on the earth
could be as easily distinguished as at the full
of the moon ; it was straight at first, but, after
continuing about one minute, contracted and



268

crooked in the iiiiilille, — tlie bend forming
nearly a right angle with the other part, —
and then gradually grew more dim until it dis-
appeared."

It was also observed, by Professor Olmsted,
of New Haven,—" to shoot off in the north-
west direction, and explode a little northward
of the star Capella, leaving, just behind the
place of explosion, a phosphorescent train of
peculiar beauty. 'I'his line was, at first, nearly
straight, but it shortly began to contract in
lengtli, to dilate in breadth, and to assume the
figure of a serpent drawing itself up, until it
it appeared like a small luminous cloud of
vapour."

Palmer, of New Haven,—" from

seven o'clock in the evening had noticed a
reddish vapo\ir, which first appeared low in the
south, but gradually rose up the southern sky
to the zenith. It was very thin, but still ob-
scured the smaller stars."

President Humphreys said, that " many
persons became exceedingly alarmed; the
light was so intense that some were aroused
from steep by the brilliant illumination of
their apartments, and were under the appre-
hension that their dwellings were in flames."
The meteors were visible throughout almost
the whole of the United States, from Maine to
Louisiana, and from Lake Huron to the Gulf
of Mexico; they were also seen in Mexico,
in the islands of Cuba and Jamaica, off" the
Bermudas, and on board of the brig Francia,
in the Atlantic Ocean, at a distance of three
hundred miles north-east of the Bermudas,
and five hundred iniles from the American
coast. Accounts from all quarters were sent
to Professor Olmsted, who took great pains to
collect them, arranged them systematically,
and published them in the twenty-fifth and
twenty-sixth volumes of " Silliman's Journal,"
where the reader may find them; and however
far removed, his tastes may be from dry phi-
losophical inquiries, he will be fully rewarded
by the entertainment which the perusal of
them will afford. The only valuable obser-
vations, from a place without the apparent
limits of the shower, were made in the Gulf
of Mexico; and, since they have given rise to
an important difference of opinion, which we
shall not consider for the present, we venture
to quote them at length.

" The ship Junior, Captain Gideon Parker
from Mobile for New York, was in the Gulf
of Mexico, latitude 26° north, longitude 85 J°
west. Captain Parker, being on deck a little
before three o'clnck on the morning of No-
vember i;5th, noticed several meteors, but not
more than he had often seen before. Heavy
dark clouds himg low in the north-east, fiom
which the second mate (who held the watch
before Captain Parker came on deck) said,
that the first meteors he saw seemed to break
like lightning. Above the clouds, which were
from fifteen degrees to twenty-five degrees
high, the sky was clear, and the stars bright
as^usual. About three o'clock. Captain Par-
ker first noticed the unusual number of falling
stars, and began to count their number, but
was forced to desist by their rapid increase.
For an hour and a half Captain Parker observ-
ed them. During that time they were seen



THE FKIE.HD.

only in the north-east, above the cloud, and
the eye at first would take in nearly the whole
space of their action, which extended six or'
seven points along the horizon, and about
forty-five degrees in altitude above it ; but, I
towards the latter part of its obscuration, the
space was more extended, say, twelve or four-
teen points horizontally, and a few degrees
higher in altitude. During its whole period
of obscuration, not one was sten in the west ;
although Captain Parker looked particularly
to this fact, and called the male's attention to
it at the time. Captain Parker distinctly re-
members a radiant point in the north-east,
from which all the courses were directed,
some shooting horizontally, some vertically,
and others at all inclinations between the two,
but none upwards, — some shot towards the
north, and some towards the east. This radi-
ant, at first, held about forty-five degrees of
altitude, but seemed to rise five degrees or ten
degrees in the period of his observation ; with-
out, however, moving from the north-east at
all. The meteors resembled common shoot-
ing stars, and were mostly as minute in mag-
nitude as the stars themselves, — ten or twelve,
however, would compare in size with the
morning star. Some of the larger moved
over a space of fifteen degrees to twenty, and
some of them seemed to develope themselves
not far from the point, and to go behind the
cloud. All that descended low enough passed
behind the cloud, — not one between the cloud
and the observer. Near to the radiant the
courses of some that were observed vere very
short, — not more than two or three degrees.
All, both large and small, left a luminous
trace, in which no prismatic colours were
observed; and no one of the traces was ob-
served to continue visible more than two
seconds. The afternoon of the preceding day
had been squally, and wind variable ; but at
the time of observation there was light wind
from north-east.

" At nearly half past four. Captain Parker
yielded the deck to his mate, who states, that,
soon after he came on deck, the stars appeared
passing over from the north-east into the west.
In the west, their courses were very short,
and they seemed 'just to let go their hold.'
'I'he ship was heading south-east. He con-
tinued on deck till eight o'clnck in the fore-
noon. In the mean time, the meteors increased
in number, and spread over the whole heavens,
and were most brilliant about six o'clnck. The
sun rose at half past six." — American Journal
of Science, vol. xxv. pp. .399, 40(1.

The cominon point of radiation spoken of by
Captain Parker, was also noticed by many
other competent witnesses of the phenomena,
and its existence has been unquestionably
established by the collections and observations
of Professors Olmsted and Twining. Profe
sor Olmsted said, that the meteors "com-
menced their progress at di(i



Online LibraryRobert SmithThe Friend : a religious and literary journal (Volume 16) → online text (page 99 of 154)