George Jotham Hagar.

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in Switzerland county, Ind., April
12, 1839; was graduated at Miami
University, in 1857, and the
Ohio Medical College, in I860; was
demonstrator of anatomy in the
last institution, in 1860-1861; enter-
ed the Union army as an Assistant
Surgeon, in 1801 ; was promoted to
Lieutenant-Colonel and Deputy Sur-
geon General, June 6, 1894 ; and was
retired, Oct 1, 1895. He was Pro-
fessor of Hygiene in the University of
Pennsylvania, in 1893-1896; and in
the last year was appointed Director
of the New York Public Library (As-
tor, Lenox and Tilden foundations).
After the close of the war Dr. Bil-
lings took charge of the library in the
Surgeon-General's office ; reorganized
the United States Marine Hospital
Service; was Vice-President of the
National Board of Health, in 1879-
1882; and had charge of the compila-
tion of vital statistics in the Eleventh
Census. He died March 11, 1913.

Billings, William, an American
composer, born in Boston, Oct 7,
1746. One of the earliest of Ameri-
can composers, he is accredited with
having introduced into New England
a spirited style of church music. He
died in Boston, Sept. 26, 1800.

Billingsgate, a word said to have
been derived from Belinus Magnus, a
somewhat mythic British prince,
father of King Lud, about B. c. 400.
More probably it came from some un-
known person called Billing. It is
applied to the celebrated London fish
market existent at least as early as
A. D. 979, made a free market in 1699,
extended in 1849, rebuilt in 1852, and
finally exposed to the rivalry of an-
other market begun 1874, completed
1876. The word is also used to indi-
cate foul, abusive language, such as
is popularly supposed to be mutually
employed by fish-wives who are unable
to come to an amicable understanding
as to the proper price of the fish about
which they are negotiating.


Binary Arithmetic

Billion, in English notation 1,000,-
000 times 1,000,000, and in England
it is written 1,000,000,000,000, i. e.,
with twice as many ciphers as 1,000,-
000 has. In the United States and
in France the notation is different,
the word billion signifying only 1,000
millions, written 1,000,000,000.

Billiton, a Dutch East Indian is-
land between Banca and the S. W. of
Borneo, of an irregular, sub-quad-
rangular form, about 40 miles across.
It produces iron and tin, and exports
gago, cocoanuts, pepper, tortoise shell,
trepang, edible birds' nests, etc. It
was ceded to the British in 1812 by
the Sultan of Palembang, but in 1824
it was given up to the Dutch. Pop.
(1890) 38,779.

Bilney, Thomas, an English mar-
tyr, born about 1495, probably at
Norwich ; studied at Trinity Hall,
Cambridge, and was ordained in 1519.
He was opposed to the formal " gooa
works " of the Schoolmen, and de-
nounced saint and relic worship ; and
to these mild Protestant views he con- 1
verted Hugh Latimer and other young
Cambridge men. In 1527 he was ar-
r igned before Wolsey, and on recant-
ing, absolved, but was confined in the
Tower for over a year. Stung by re-
morse, after two years of suffering, he
began to preach in the fields of Nor-
folk, but was soon apprehended and
condemned ; and although allowed to
receive the sacraments of the Church
from which he differed so little, he
was burned as a heretic at Norwich,
Aug. 19, 1531.

Biloxi, a city in Harrison co.,
Miss., the site of the first settlement
on tho Mississippi by white men, un-
der the direction of d'Iberville, in
1699. Pop. (1910) 7,988.

Biloxi Indians, the name given to
on of the 10 groups of tribes into
which the Siouan stock of Nortn
American Indians is divided.

Bimetallism, a term invented by
Henry Cernuschi and currently used
to denote a double monetary standard
of value. A Bimetallic Congress was
held at Brussels in April, 1896, repre-
sentatives from Great Britain,
France, the United States, Germany,
Austria-Hungary, Belgium, Denmark,
Holland, Rumania, and Russia being
present. Ultimately the members

constituted themselves a permanent
committee, and expressed their opin-
ion that a preliminary and immediate
agreement might result from the re-
establishment of bimetallism by the
United States, the reopening of the
Indian mints for the coinage of sil-
ver, the turning into silver of part of
the metallic reserve of the Bank of
England, and the absorption of a suf-
ficient amount of silver by the vari-
ous European States. The currency
question in the United States influ-
enced very materially the canvass for
the Presidency in 1896. It appeared,
as the year wore on, that free silver
doctrines had captured a majority of
the Democratic party, and at the Chi-
cago Convention (July 7th) this ma-
jority adopted a platform demanding
" the immediate restoration of the
free and unlimited coinage of gold and
silver at the present legal ratio of 16
to 1, without waiting for the aid or
consent of any other nation," and
that " the standard silver dollar shall
be full legal tender equally with gold
for all debts, public and private."
inated for the Presidency, but was de-
cisively beaten by WILLIAM McKiN-
LET, the Republican candidate, who
favored a single gold standard, though
he pledged himself to promote action
by international agreement. To this
end he sent commissioners to France,
Great Britain and Germany, in 1897,
and they, together with the French
Ambassador, laid various proposals
before the British Government, the
chief of which were that the Indian
mints should be reopened, and that
Great Britain should annually pur-
chase $50,000,000 of silver. The In-
dian Government, however, declined
to agree to the first suggestion, and
no action resulted.

Binary Arithmetic, a method of
notation invented by Leibnitz, but
which appears to have been in use in
China about 4,000 years ago. As the
term binary implies, there are only
two characters in this notation ; these
are 1 and 0. By it, our 1 is noted by
1, our 2 by 10, 3 by 11, 4 by 100, 5
by 101, 6 by 110, 7 by 111, 8 by 1,000,
9 by 1,001, 10 by 1,010, etc. The
principle is that multiplies by 2 in
place of by 10, as on the common sys-

Binary Engine

Binary Engine, usually an en-
gine having one cylinder, the piston
being impelled by steam, which, hav-
ing done its work there, is exhausted
into another part of the apparatus,
where it is allowed to communicate
its unutilized heat to some liquid vola-
tile at a lower temperature ; the va-
por of this second liquid, by its ex-
pansion in a second cylinder, yields
additional useful force.

Bingen, a German town in the
Province of Rhine-Hesse, Hesse ; on
the left bank of the Rhine, and the
right of the Nahe. It is of con-
siderable historical interest, contain-
ing the ruins of the Castle of Klopp,
blown up by the French in 1689 ; the
remains of a 12th century monastery ;
and the tower, which, tradition tells
us, was the scene of the tormenting
death of Hatto, Archbishop of Mainz,
said to have been eaten alive by mice
in the 9th century. A statue of " Ger-
mania," heroic size, has been erected
here to commemorate the German vic-
tories of 1870-71. Pop. (1900) 9,670.

Bingham, Hiram, an American
Congregational clergyman, born in
Bennington, Vt, Oct. 30, 1789; was
one of the first missionaries of the
Congregational Church to be sent to
the Sandwich Islands, where he ac-
quired much influence with the na-
tives. He died in New Haven, Conn.,
Nov. 11, 1869.

Bingham, John A., an American
politician, born in Mercer, Pa., in
1815; became a lawyer in 1840; mana-
ger of the trial of President Johnson;
minister to Japan in 1873-1885. He
died, March 20, 1900.

Bingham, Kinsley S., an Amer-
ican legislator, born in Camillus, N.
Y., Dec. 16, 1801; went to Michigan in
1833; was a member of Congress in
1849-1851; Governor in 1855-1859,
and United States Senator in 1859-
1861. He died, Oct. 5, 1861.

Binghamton, city and capital of
Brooine county, N. Y.; at junction of
the Chenango and Susquehanna rivers
and on several railroads; 50 miles E.
of Elmira; has a Government Build-
ing, State Asylum for the Insane,
Armory, and the Commercial Trav-
eler's Home; is one of the largest
cigar manufacturing cities in the
country. Pop. (1910) 48,443.


Binlcy, "Ward, the Garrick of
the Dutch stage, was born at Rotter-
dam in 1755, of English parents. In
1799 he made his debut on the stage
of Amsterdam, and from the first
took his place at the head of his
profession. He died at The Hague
in 1818.



Binnacle, corrupted from bittacle,

| a wooden case or box in which the
compass on board a
ship is kept to pro-
tect it from injury.
Binney, H i b-
bert, a Canadian
clergyman, born in
Nova Scotia, Aug.

t 12, 1819 ; graduated

i at Oxford University

! in 1842. He became

i Bishop (Anglican)

, of Nova Scotia and

i Prince Edward Is-

, land, in 1851, this be-
ing the first instance
of England founding
a bishopric in her
colonies. He attend-
ed the General Con-
vention of the Prot-
e s t a n t Episcopal
Church held in Chicago in 1886.
died in 1887.

Binney, Horace, an American
lawyer, born in Philadelphia, Jan. 4,
1780 ; was graduated at Harvard in
1797; and for many years was at the
head of the Pennsylvania bar. He
had a number of distinguished cases
in his career ; the most noted one be-
ing the defense of the city of Philadel-
phia against the executors of Stephen
Girard. He was also a director in the
United States Bank. He wrote many
valuable papers, and was the author
of "The Leaders of the Old Bar of
Philadelphia," and "The Privilege of
the Writ of Habeas Corpus Under the
Constitution." He died in Philadel-
phia, Aug. 12, 1875.

Binocular, literally, having two
eyes or pertaining to both eyes; an
instrument having two tubes, each
furnished above with an eye glass,
so as to enable one to see with both
eyes at once.

Bintnrong (bear-marten), a ge-

nus of carnivores in the civet section.
Its resemblance to raccoons, beside


which it used to be placed, is entirely
superficial. It is a slow, arboreal and
nocturnal animal, partly vegetarian,
indeed omnivorous, in its diet, with
lank body, coarse, dark hair, long,
tufted ears, and prehensile tail. There
is but one species found in India, Ala-
lay, Sumatra and Java. It is easily

Binne, or Benuc, the largest and
most important tributary of Niger
river, West Africa. It rises in the
mountains N. of Adamawa and at Lo-
koja joins the Niger.

Biobio, the largest river of Chile,
has a W. N. W. course of about 200
miles, from near the volcano of An-
tuco in the Andes to Consepcion on
the Pacific Ocean. It is 2 miles wide
at its mouth, and navigable for 100
miles. The river, since 1875, has
given name to a province with an
area of 5,353 square miles, and a pop.
(1914) of 103,873.

Biograph, an apparatus that dis-
plays in rapid sequence a long series
of photographs. It differs from the
kinetoscppe in that instead of showing
small pictures through an enlarging
lens by reflected light, it projects them
on a screen where they are shown life
size, or larger if desired.

Biology, a term first introduced by
Treviranus of Bremen, adopted by
the leading English speaking natural-
ists, and now having universal cur-
rency. It is used in two senses : ( 1 )
(In a more restricted sense) : Physi-
ology; (2) (In a wider sense) : The
science of life in its widest accepta-

Biot, Jean Baptiste, French
mathematician and physicist born at
Paris 1774, and died there 1862. He
became professor of phvsics in the
College de France in 1800, in 1803
member of the Academy of Sciences,
in 1804 was appointed to the Observ-
atory of Paris, in 180G was made
member of the Bureau des Longitudes,
in 1809 became also professor of physi-
cal astronomy in the University of
Paris. IH connection with the meas-
urement of a degree of the meridian
he visited Britain in 1817. He is es-
pecially celebrated as the discoverer of
the circular polarization of light.

Biotite, a hexagonal and an opti-
cally uniaxial mineral, formerly called


magnesia mica, hexagonal mica, and
uniaxial mica ; named after Jean Bap-
tiste Biot

Biped, a descriptive term, some-
times applied to man, but more fre-
quently to birds.

Birch, the English name of the
trees and shrubs belonging to the bo-
tanical genus betula. The common
birch grows best in healthy soils and
in Alpine districts. The drooping or
weeping birch is a variety of this tree.
It grows wild on the European conti-
nent and in Asia. The wood of the
birch is tough and white. It is used
for making brooms; it is often burned
into charcoal ; twigs are by many em-
ployed for purposes of castigatipn.
The oil obtained from the white rind
is used in tanning Russia leather. The
Russians turn it to account also as a
vermifuge and as a balsam in the
cure of wounds. In some countries
the bark of the birch is made into
hats and cups. The canoe birch, of
which the North American Indians
constructed their portable caooes is
so ca'led for that reason.

Birch, Samuel, an English Ori-
entalist, born in London, Nov. 3, 1813.
He entered the British Museum as As-
sistant Keeper of Antiquities, in 1836,
and ultimately became Keeper of the
Egyptian and Assyrian Antiquities.
He was especially famed for his ca-
pacity and skill in Egyptology, and
was associated with Baron Bunsen in
his work on Egypt, contributing the
philological portions relating to hiero-
glyphics. He died Dec. 27, 1885.

Bird, Charles, an American mili-
tary officer, born in Delaware, June
17, 1838. On March 2, 1867, he was
brevetted First Lieutenant and Cap-
tain in the United States army for
gallantry in the battle of Fredericks-
burg, Major for Spottsylvania, and
Lieutenant-Colonel for Petersburg,
Va. He was appointed a Second
Lieutenant, 14th United States In-
fantry, in 1866; promoted to Major
and Quartermaster in 1895 ; commis-
sioned Colonel of United States Vol-
unteers in 1898 ; Brigadier-General
and retired in 1902.

Bird, Frederic Mayer, an Amer-
ican clergyman, born in Philadelphia,
June 28, 1838; graduated at the Uni-
versity of Pennsylvania in 1857, and


at the Union Theological Seminary in
1860. He was rector at Spotswood,
N. J., in 1870-1874; Chaplain and
Professor of Psychology, Christian
Evidences and Rhetoric, at Lehigh
University in 1881-1886; and acting
chaplain there in 1893-1898. He was
noted as a hymnologist, and as the
collector of one of the most complete
and valuable musical libraries in the
United States. Died April 2, 1908.

Bird, Robert Montgomery, an
American dramatist and novelist,
born in Newcastle, Del., about 1803 ;
died in Philadelphia, Jan. 22, 1854.

Bird-Catching Spider, a name
applied to a gigantic spider, a native
of Surinam and elsewhere which preys
upon insects and small birds which it
hunts for and pounces on.

Bird Lice, the common name
given to the small parasites so fre-
quently seen infesting birds.

Bird Lime, a substance whitish
and limy in appearance ; used, as its
name imports, for capturing birds. It
is, in general, manufactured from the
bark of the holly.

Bird of HI Omen, a phrase often
applied to a person who is regarded as
unlucky ; one who is in the habit of
bringing ill news. The ancients
thought that some birds indicated
good luck, and others evil.

Bird of Paradise, the English
designation of a family of conirostral
birds. They are closely allied to the
crows, with which, indeed, they are
united by some writers. They have
magnificent plumage, especially the
males, who can, moreover, elevate
quite a canopy of plumes behind their

Bird's Eye, the eye or eyes of a
bird. In botany, the name of several
plants with small, bright, usually blue,

Bird's-Eye Maple, curled maple,
the wood of the sugar maple when
full of little knotty spots, somewhat
resembling birds' eyes, much used in
cabinet work.

Bird's-Eye View, the representa-
tion of any scene as it would appear
if seen from a considerable elevation
right above.

Bird's Nest the nest of a bird.
Those of the several species vary in


their minor details so as to be in most
cases distinguishable from each other.
Edible birds' nests are nests built
by the collocalia esculenta, and cer-
tain other species of swallows inhabit-
ing Sumatra, Java, China, and some
other parts of the East. The nests,
a Chinese luxury, are formed of a
mucilaginous substance, secreted by
the birds from their salivary glands.

Birds of Passage, birds which
migrate with the season from a colder
to a warmer, or from a wanner to a
colder climate.

Bireme, a Roman ship of war
with two banks of oars. It was in-
ferior in magnitude and strength to
the trireme.

Biren, Ernest John, Duke of
Conrland, a Lithuanian of mean fam-
ily, was born in 1690, and went in
1714 to St. Petersburg. Anna, Duch-
ess Dowager of Courland, made him
her favorite, and when she became
Empress of Russia, intrusted to him
the administration of the kingdom.
On the death of the Empress he as-
sumed the regency, by virtue of her
will ; but, in 1740, a conspiracy was
formed against him by Marshal Mu-
nich, and he was condemned to death,
which sentence was changed to banish-
ment. Peter III. recalled him, and
Catherine II. restored him to his for-
mer dignity. In 17G3, Biren re-en-
tered Mitau ; and, profiting by the les-
sons of misfortune he had experienced,
governed for the remainder of his life
with mildness and justice. He died
in 1772.

Birge, Edward Asahel, an Amer-
ican naturalist, born in Troy, N. Y.,
Sept 7, 1851; graduated at Williams
College in 1873 ; studied physiology
and histology at Leipsic in 1880-1881.
He became Instructor of Natural His-
tory in the University of Wisconsin
in 1875 ; Professor of Zoology in
1879 ; and Dean of the College of Let-
ters and Science in 1891. In 1897 he
became Director of the Geological and
Natural History Survey of Wiscon-

Birkenfeld, a German principali-
ty belonging to Oldenburg, but sur-
rounded by the Prussian Rhine Prov-
ince, and intersected by the railway
from Bingen to Saarbruck. It has an



area of nearly 200 square miles, with
a population of (1910) 50,496; it
Las been connected with Oldenburg,
300 miles distant, since 1817. The
capital, Birkenfeld, has a population
of about 3,000.

Birmingham, city and county-
seat of Jefferson co., Ala. ; at the
junction of several trunk railroads;
96 miles N. W. of Montgomery, the
State capital. Birmingham was in-
corporated as a city in 1871 with a
population of less than 1,000. Its
noticeable development began in 1880
and its remarkable progress may be
eaid to date from 1890. In 1896 its
tv.-Q largest iron and steel corporations
began selling pig iron for export at
prices as satisfactory as those ob-
to ined on domestic orders ; and since
then it has had a larger development
in the iron and steel industry than
any city S. of Pittsburg. Pop. (1890)
2G,178; (1900) 38,415; with suburbs,
about 100,000; (1910) 132,685.

Birmingham, a city of England,
on the Rea river near its confluence
with the Tame, in the N. W. of War-
wickshire, with suburbs extending
into Staffordshire and Worcester-
shire; 112 miles N. W. of London,
and 97 S. E. of Liverpool. It is the
principal seat of the hardware manu-
facture in Great Britain. Bir-
mingham is known to have existed in
the reign of Alfred, in 872, and is
mentioned in the Domesday Book
H086) by the name of Bermengeham.
Another old name of the town is
Bromwycham, a form still preserved
very nearly in the popular local pro-
nunciation, Brummagem. Pop. (1801)
73,670; (1891) 478.113; (1901) 523,-
179; (1911) 525,833.

Birney, David Bell, an American
military officer, born in Huntsville,
Ala., May 29, 1825 ; son of James Gil-
lespie Birney ; studied law in Cin-
cinnati, and. in 1848, began practice
in Philadelphia. At the outbreak of
the Civil War he entered the Union
army. He distinguished himself in
the battles of Yorktown, Williams-
burg, Fredericksburg, Chancellors-
ville and Gettysburg. He died in
Philadelphia, Pa., Oct. 18, 1864.

Birney, James Gillespie, an
American statesman and publicist,
born at Danville, Ky., Feb. 4, 1792. i

Birth -Rate

Though a Southern planter, he eman-
cipated his slaves and became a prom-
inent anti-slavery leader in the South,
proprietor and editor of the anti-slav-
ery journal, " The Philanthropist,"
etc. He was candidate of the Liberty
Party for President in 1840 and 1844.
He died at Perth Amboy, N. J., Nov.
25, 1857.

Birney, William, an American
lawyer, born in Madison county, Ala.,
May 28, 1819 ; was educated in Paris ;
took part in the Revolution of 1848;
and was appointed, on public compe-
tition, Professor of English Litera-
ture in the College at Bourges,
France. In 1861 he entered the
United States army as a private, and
was promoted to brevet Major-Gen-
eral. In 1863-1865 he commanded
a division. He died Aug. 14, 1907.

Biron, Armand de Gontanlt,
Baron de, Marshal of France; born
about 1524. He took a prominent
part in the civil wars of Huguenot
and Catholic, and served at the bat-
tles of Dreux, St. Denis and Moncon-
tour. He negotiated the peace of St.
Germain, and narrowly escaped at the
massacre of St. Bartholomew. He
was killed at the siege of Epernay, in

Biron, Charles de Gontanlt,
Dnc de, son of the preceding; born
in 1562, was Admiral and Marshal of
France, and is noted for the. friend-
ship which Henry IV. entertained for
him, and for his treason toward that
monarch. He early covered himself
with glory at the battles of Arques
and Ivry, and at the sieges of Paris
and Rouen. The king loaded him
with honors, saved his life at the fight
of Fontaine Francaise, and made him
ambassador to England. Biron en-
tered into a conspiracy with Spain
and Savoy against his sovereign ; and
the plot being revealed by Lafin. its
instigator, he was beheaded in 1602.

Birth-Rate, the proportion of
births to each 1,000 inhabitants. It is
affected by economic and social condi-
tions, war, famine, etc., the well-to-do
having a lower rate than the average.
In the United States the rate among
foreign residents is 38.29; natives,
26.35; general average, 26.68. As a
rule, about 105 boys are born to 100



Birn, the name of a warlike chief
of South America, who flourished in
the 16th century. In 1526, this name
was given to the empire of the Incas,
now known as Peru.

Biscay or Vizcaya, the most
northerly of the Basque Provinces of
Spain, is bounded N. by the Bay of
Biscay, E. and S. by its sister prov-
inces, Guipuzcoa and Alava, and W.
by Santander. It has an area (very
mountainous in the S.) of 836 square
miles, and pop. (1913) of 363,587. !
Chief town, Bilbao; pop. 93,536.

Biscay, Bay of, that portion of
the Atlantic Ocean which sweeps in
along the N. shores of the Spanish
Peninsula in an almost straight line
from Cape Ortegal to St. Jean tie
Luz, at the W. foot of the Pyfenees,
and thence curves N. along the W.
shores of France to the island of
Ushant. Its extreme width is ab&ut
400 miles, and its length much about
the same.

Biscuit, in genera! language, iiin
flour cake which has been baked in the
oven until it is highly dried.

In pottery, articles molded and
baked in an oven, preparatory to the
glazing and burning. In the biscuit
form, pottery is bibulous, but the glaze
sinks into the pores and fuses in the
kiln, forming a vitreous coating to the

Bishop (a word derived frcm the
Greek episcopos, that is, overseer,
through the Saxon biscop), in the
early Christian Church, the name of
every person to whom tbe care of a
Christian congregation was intrusted.
Every congregation even in country
districts had at least one such over-
seer. The word was accordingly
used in the early history of the
Church in exactly the same sense as
presbyter or elder.

In the United States a bishop is
the highest dignitary in the Greek,
Catholic and Protestant Episcopal
Churches. These bishops generally
claim to be successors of the apostles.
In the Methodist Episcopal and Prot-
estant Episcopal Churches the bishop
is elected by the Conference or Con-
vention representing the respective
churches of the diocese. In the Ro-
man Catholic Church growth has been
sufficient in the opinion of the ruling

functionaries of that communion, to
warrant the establishment of the
greater hierarchy, and as a conse-

Online LibraryGeorge Jotham HagarThe New world encyclopedia; a library of reference (Volume 1) → online text (page 47 of 91)