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The Figure of a Machine for grinding Lenses spherically. By Mr. Samuel

Jenkins. N° 459, P- ^55.

Fig. 8, pi. 9, represents this machine, which is contrived to turn a sphere
at one and the same time on two axes, which cut each other at right angles,
with equal velocity and pressure on each of them. Without any skill or care in
the workman, it will produce a segment of a true sphere, barely by turning
round the wheels.

A represents a globe covered with cement, in which are fixed the pieces of
glass to be ground.

• Author of several works on natural history, the chief of which is an account of plants used in
the arts, in agriculture, and in medicine, written in German, and amounting to 12 vols. 8vo. Of
the 12 vols, seven were edited by Gmelin after the author's decease.



This globe is fastened to the axis, and turns with the wheel b. c is the
brass cup, which polishes the glass: this is fastened to the axis, and turns with
the wheel d. So that the motion of this cup c is at right angles with the mo-
tion of the globe a.

Of an immoderate and fatal Use of Crabs' Eyes* and other earthy Absorbents,
producing Calculi in the Stomach and Kidneys.'^ By J. Philip Breyne, M. D.,
F. R. S. Addressed to Sir Hans Sloane, President of the Royal Society, &c.
N°459, p. 557. From the Latin.

In this communication Dr. Breyne relates the case of Sir Robert Racket, Kt.
who resided in Barbadoes. He was of a robust constitution, and enjoyed very
good health, except that he was sometimes attacked with the gout, in conse-
quence of indulging too freely in wine. Another consequence of his occasional
intemperance was that he was troubled with cardialgia or heartburn, for the re-
moval of which he frequently made use of crabs'-eyes, chalk and other earthy
absorbents, which afforded a temporary relief; but as after some time he be-
came subject to a daily recurrence of this symptom (the heartburn) he con-
tinued taking the beforementioned absorbents in large doses every day, for a
number of years ; until at length they not only failed to relieve the cardialgia,
but brought on a most distressing sense of weight under the diaphragm, ac-
companied sometimes with vomiting, and most acute nephritic pains. These
symptoms proved fatal in 1694, when the patient was in his 56th year.

On opening the body a great number of calculi of different sizes, and
branched after the manner of corals, were found in the stomach. The largest
and most remarkable of these ramified calculi, though the extremities of some
of the branches had been broken off at the time they were shown to Dr.
Breyne, by Mr. W. Racket, (son of the deceased, and who communicated
to the Doctor the particulars of this case), yet it then weighed 2 oz. 5 drs.
The next in size weighed 1 oz. 1 dr. The others were much smaller, from
the size of a poppy seed to that of a pea, and for the most part of a sphe-
rical shape.

All these calculi were inveloped in the stomach in a thick slimy fluid, which
by drying upon paper in the air became converted into a powder, that very
much resembled the substance of which the aforesaid calculi were composed.
Nevertheless the substance of these calculi was not exactly alike in all. In the

*» * The lapilli cancrorum, vel oculi cancrorum are stony concretions found in the stomach of


f In renibus. But in the history of this case mention is made of one kidney only.


greater number it was white or cineritious ; in others it was of the colour and
consistence of the occidental bezoar; while in a few, it resembled the ori-
ental bezoar.

Moreover there was found in the kidney,* a stone weighing 3 drs, seemingly
formed of 6 spheres, as represented in fig. 4, and in substance similar for the
most part to the calculi found in the stomach.

For other instances of calculi in the stomach, see Phil. Trans. N° 250,-j~ and
Eph. Nat. Curios. Dec. ], Ann. 1, Obs. 181.

Concerning Two Pigs of Lead, found near Ripley, with this Inscription on them.
Imp. Cms. Domitiano Aug. Cos. vii. By the Rev. Mr. S. Kirkshaw.
N° 459, P- 560.

These were found by a countryman, whose horse's foot slipping into a hole
covered with ling, he dismounted, and, thrusting his stick into the hole, per-
ceived something hard, and of the sound of metal ; then, by digging, he
found these two pieces of lead, standing upright, and near each other, about 2
feet under-ground. They are of the same shape and dimensions, and have the
same inscription. One of them weighs 1 1 stone, the other 1 1 stone and 1
pound. The letters of the inscription are raised, and very bold. There have
been 4 other letters on the side of each of them ; but they are become so ob-
scure, that they cannot be discovered with any certainty. — They seem to have
been b. n. i. g. . . . The great Roman causeway leading from Aldborough, in
this neighbourhood, into Lancashire, passes within a little way of the place
where the leads were found. There have been no lead-mines, as far as can be
known, within some miles of it : but a countryman speaks of a large rock,
about half a mile from it, on the top of which there is an impression similar to
either of the leads, only so much larger as to admit of a pan, wherein they
might be smelted, if in so early time they knew the modern art of smelting by
the air.

Camden mentions 20 pieces of lead of this kind, found in Cheshire, part of

them with this inscription, Imp. Domit. Aug. Ger, De. Ceang Camden's

Britan. fol. edit. p. 679. — However, among the Duke of Parma's medals, pub-
lished by Paolo Pedrusi, we do not find any struck in the 7th consulate of
Domitian, but what have the addition of divi filius, or the like. That author
too says, that the first year of Domitian's being emperor was the 8th of his
consulate ; nether of which agree with the inscription on the leads. —

• In rene ; but in which of the kidneys it is not specified. *

t Vol. iv, p. 357, of these Abridgments.


The dimensions of the pieces of lead were, the greatest length 23^^ inches,
the mean breadth 4-^, and the depth or thickness 4 inches.

The Description and Draught of a Machine for reducing Fractures of the Thigh.
By Mr. Henri/ Ettrich, Surgeon. N° 459, P- 562.

This machine consists of no more than a wheel and pinion, with their axles;
the roch, or snagged wheel, being herein accounted as part of the great wheel,
fixed in a light frame of about 2 feet long, (see fig. 1, pi. 10) the whole not
exceeding the weight of 1 5 pounds ; and when taken to pieces, by unscrewing
the frame-pieces, may be packed up in a common rush-basket, belted to the
side, and conveyed to any distance. The room it takes up in working is not a
full yard, and it may be set up and fixed for use in a few minutes. In using
this machine, the surgeon needs only one assistant ; whereas, in most other
methods, their number is most troublesome and ipconvenient : the business of
this assistant is only to mind the surgeon's orders, and move the winch accord-
ing to his direction. When the extension is sufficient, the engine stays itself,
and continues the tension of the limb, by the assistance of this roch, or toothed
wheel, whose teeth are cut fine enough to stay the engine at every line of an
inch, and which is fixed on the back of the aforesaid great wheel, both to the
cross by the help of screws, and on its arbor by having its centre squared out,
so as to fix tight on it, and so near the frame as only to allow a bare clearage :
its teeth, standing counter to the former, admit the spring or catch, fixed on
the inside of the frame, to slip over its vertex, without interruption; but in a
reverse rotation, or when the engine is about to come up, it flies into the spaces,
and stops it. The upper part projects about an inch from the frame, so that
being pressed on by the finger of one hand, the inferior part is elevated above
the range of the teeth, to admit the coming up of the engine, which is to be
directed by the other hand being applied to the winch in any degree. This
engine has its power so commanded, that it may be used without restriction,
from the most robust to the most tender frame, as it acts and exerts its power
in proportion to the resistance made. This extension is made deliberately,
steady, equally, and in one continued line, without the least variation. And,
in oblique fractures of the thigh, where the bones are apt to ride, and there-
fore require a continued extension in a certain degree, to prevent the limb's
shortening after the cure, such a machine must be of excellent service; having
the property of increasing or decreasing the extension at pleasure, and to be
perfected without the least jar or tremor.

The necessary appendages are bands, by which the engine extends the limb.


Immediately from the axle of the great wheel comes a girth, at the other end
of which is a hook, which links into a swivel-ring at the bottom of a sole-
plate : this plate answers the shape of the foot, and is made of well-hammered
brass, the inside of which is padded, to sit easy to the foot: the upper part has
a strap, which clasps over the upper part of the metatarsal bones; and to keep
the straps ending in the sole-plate from galling or pressing the sides of the foot
and ancle, there project 2 arms from the sides of this sole-plate, to which
the straps coming from the ancle-band are fastened. That the whole limb may
be kept in a line with the machine, the leg is suspended by bands, one of
which is placed at the ancle, from the sides of which pass 2 straps, to join the
inferior knee-band: from this band pass 2 straps to the superior knee-band:
all these straps are designed to divide the extension, so that all parts may equally
bear alike, and so to secure the joints of the limb from the violence of the
extension. The inside of these straps are lined; the bands encircling the limb
are contrived in the same manner as the bow or spring of a truss, having strong
clasps at the ends, after the manner of those for pocket-books, to fit any di-
mensions. The band embracing the part above the fracture, and from which
pass 2 straps to the head of the bed, to make the counter-extension, is of the
same kind as the former, and is to be kept on during the whole time of de-
cumbiture, to prevent the patient's body sinking on the fracture, and thereby
contracting the limb. The exterior of the 2 last mentioned straps presses just
beneath the great trochanter on its outside; the other comes from the anterior
part of the same band, and in such a scite, as to give the patient liberty to
raise himself at discretion. To preserve the natural curvity of the thigh, it
would be necessary to have a large broad band arising from the bedside, to en-
compass the fractured part, and keep it steady.

Of petrified Oysters, by Cornelius le Bruyn,* illustrated by James Theodore
Klein, F.R.S. and Sec. Rep. Dantzic. N° 459, p. 568.

That indefatigable traveller Cornelius le Bruyn, among other things worthy
of notice, relating to natural history, mentions oysters, of which not only the
valves, but even the animals themselves were petrified within the shells.

" At some miles from Nicosia, he says, there is a hill, which consists
wholly of petrified oysters. The shells are close shut, and when they are

* Cornelius, or Corneille le Bruyn, a painter, was born at the Hague, and travelled into tlie
Levant in the years 1674—1708. At his return he published his travels, which are considerably
valued on account of their accompanying plates. He must not be confounded with a more emineni
artist, via. Charles le Brun, the celebrated French painter, born in 1619.



[anno 1740.

opened, there appears an oyster on each side, so well consumed, that one might
say it was well engraved there. These shells are also petrified, or turned to
stone. I opened one, in the middle of which there was an oyster quite entire
and at the same time, as it were, engraved in the other shell."

I did not wonder at the shells being turned to stone, but it seemed strange
that the animal oyster should be petrified; nor did the author's reason of
this phenomenon appear to be sufficient.

" When we take sand out of the first shell, we see the oyster, which is in
like manner consumed by time ; whence we must conclude, that these oysters
have been alive there, and that the water running out, the sand has insensibly
supplied its place, and that the oyster, as it died, left the print of its shape in
the shell. Thus there are some of these oysters, like those stones in which
we see a fish."

It will hardly be understood what is meant by the shape of the oyster, a
soft and corruptible animal, being impressed on its shells, before the shells
themselves, by nature hard, were turned into stone ; nor will you easily come
into the author's opinion, that it should be possible for an oyster to imprint its
shape on the shells, in like manner as the skeletons of fishes leave their impres-
sion in soft earth, which is afterwards turned to a stone, for the most part
flaky. Therefore I thought it not amiss to explain this account by schemes of
a lithostreum, which I got whole out of a very hard stone of the mountain
Zijanken-Berg, near Dantzic, in 1736.

It is to be noted, J . That the figured stones of Dantzic, containing many ex-
traordinary vegetable and fossil substances, especially of the mountains Hagels-
Berg, and Zijanken Berg, are formed of potter's earth and clay, mixed with a
little sand, grey, and generally very hard ; so that being beaten with an iron
hammer, they fly asunder like the vitrum fossile imperati. 2. That they con-
tain abundance of shells of cochlidae or conchas, very often entire, petrified,
but very distinguishable by their natural colours; sometimes, when the matrix,
as it is called, is less compact or hard, partly calcined, and partly petrified.

Now in the abovemeiitioned lithostreum, if I mistake not, the same phae-
nomena appear, which le Bruyn has endeavoured, however obscurely, to de-
scribe ; therefore I took care to have an exact draught of this lithostreum, the
valves being opened with great circumspection.

In these, the form of the animal remained entire; but the whole substance
of it was changed to a smooth, hard clay. This perhaps is what le Bruyn
meant, when he said, " In the middle - - - we see the oyster entire, and at the
same time it looks as if it was engraven in the opposite shell."

Now it is well known, that in the inner part of most oysters, especially in


the concave valve, there is a sort of cistern, containing the water which is
greedily drawn in, closed with a thin shelly plate, and from the hinge generally
equalling the whole bed of the animal ; and I have learned by experience, that
this cistern, when it is distinct from the hard shell, is apt to deceive the un-
skilful : for it has happened more than once, that some have pronounced the
cavity covered with a transparent plate in fossil oysters, to be the figure of the
oyster rudely inscribed on either shell.

Perhaps such a shell of Mount Nicosia might impose upon Le Bruyn, " That
the oyster has imprinted its shape on the shell," when he boldly appeals to his
figure, " as may be seen in the figure :" whereas even his figure, considered
attentively, shows nothing but the mere shell, representing only an imaginary
shape of the oyster. I could prove this assertion by many schemes.

Observations of the Planet Mars, viade at Berlin, in the Autumn of 1736. By
Christ. Kirch, Astronomer of the Royal Academy there. N° 459, ?• 573-

Some observations of that planet, as to its places and situations, with res-
pect to the sun and fixed stars, &c.

A Collection of the Observations of the remarkable Red Lights seen in the Air on
Dec. 5, or iQth N. S. 1737, sent from different Places to the Royal Society.
N° 459, P- 583.

1. As observed at Naples by the Prince of Cassano, F.R.S. p. 583. — Dec. l6,
1737, N. s. in the evening, the sun being about 25 degrees below the horizon,
a light was observed in the north, as if the air was on fire, and flashing; the
intenseness of which gradually increasing, at the 3d hour of the night it spread
much westward. Its greatest height was about 65°; for it occupied the whole
extent of both the Bears and the polar star; yet at the sides it was not so high;
for in some places near the north it rose only to 50°, and it gradually diminished,
so as to become insensible at the true horizon.

The abovementioned light at its extremities was unequally jagged, and scat-
tered, and followed the course of the westerly wind; so that for a few hours it
spread considerably wider, yet without ever reaching the zenith. About the
6th hour of the night the intenseness of the colour disappeared : some small
traces of the inflammation still remaining towards the north-east and the west,
which were all vanished at 7-3-'' of the night.

The inflamed matter, in the greatest part of its extent, gave a free passage
to the rays of the stars, even of the 3d and 4th magnitude, situate behind it.
About the 4th hour of the night, a very regular arch, of a parabolic figure,



was seen to rise gently, to 2° ot' rectangular elevation, and to 20° of horizontal
amplitude. This phenomenon was seen all over Italy, as appears by several ac-
counts of it, though with some disagreement between them.

The most probable opinion as to the cause of this phenomenon, ascribes it
to the simple firing of a bituminous and sulphureous matter, on account of its
very little specific gravity, raised to the upper parts of the atmosphere, and
there, by the clashing of contrary winds, broken, comminuted, and at last set
on fire. This opinion has been defended with strong arguments in the Peters-
burg commentaries, by Mayer, on occasion of the appearance of a similar
phenomenon in those northern countries. And indeed the preceding eruption
of Vesuvius, the contrariety of the moving forces, the readiness of the matter
to take fire, the unequal intenseness of the light, the streaks, and all the other
circumstances observed in this meteor, are plain arguments of a genuine and
real accension. And Wolfius, on the appearance of a phenomenon much like
this, which was seen all over Germany on the 17th of March 17 17, is of opi-
nion, that it should be called imperfect lightning, as being produced by the in-
flammable matter of lightning.

2. Observed at Padua, by the Marquis Poleni, F. R. S. p. 587- — At the
time of this meteor, the air was calm, and the barometer was remarkably

At 5\^, there appeared near the horizon a blackish zone, with its upper limb
of a sky-colour, somewhat obscure. Above this zone was another very lumi-
nous, resembling the dawn pretty far advanced. The highest zone was of a
red fiery colour. The altitudes of the zones seemed to bear such proportion,
that the second was double the first, and the third triple; and in many places
they rose somewhat above the 40th degree of altitude. Eastward they extended
to the 55th degree on the horizon, and westward to the 70th.

It is remarkable, that after sun-set on the preceding days, as well as this,
there appeared in the west a remarkable redness expanded on each side; and
on the ensuing evening, the same bright red colour, appearing near the hori-
zon, deceived the common people into a belief, that a new phenomenon, like
the foregoing, was breaking out of the horizon. Near our zenith there ap-
peared some thin lucid clouds, partly of a whitish red, in such a manner, that
they seemed as if occasioned by the burning of houses at some distance to
the north. Others of this sort had happened before, and some were seen

A little after 6, the upper parts began to emit red streamings, or rays, in
plenty ; but in these the red was now and then intermixed with whitish and
darkish colours. In a few seconds after, there issued out from the very equi-


noctial west, a red and very bright column, which ascended to the third part
of the heavens, and a little after, it became curved in the shape of the

At half after 8, almost in an instant of time, the bright zone, from the 8th
degree west to the 50th east, became more vivid, and rose higher; and above
this appeared a new large one, of a red fiery colour, with several successive
streamings tending upward, and passing Co degrees of altitude; the western
part had assumed the form of a thin cloud. At 12, the light of the aurora
was nearly extinct, there appearing only a very weak, light along the tops of the
mountains. Twenty minutes after, there appeared a white brightish beam, at
30° west, and 60° high; but it soon became invisible. In half an hour after,
a very weak light remained in the west, near the horizon; which had not been
observable, if the brightness of the preceding phenomenon had not invited to
continue the observation.

3. Observed at the Observatory of the Institute of Bononia. By Dr. Eustachio
Zanotti, Deputy Professor of ^4stronomy, p. 5y3. — The aurora borealis, which
was formerly a rare phenomenon, and almost unknown in this climate, is now
become very frequent. In Bononia a great number have been observed for
some years past. This time it was so very remarkable, that no one remembers
to have ever seen the like. As to its extent, it spread so as to occupy about
140° of the heavens; and, as to its light, it was so vivid, as by it to distinguish
houses at a great distance; which seemed of a red colour, which made some
people attribute this light to a fire in the neighbourhood.

It continued at times variously increasing and decreasing.

About S*', the aurora formed itself into a concave arch towards the horizon.
The polar star was near the top of its convexity, and some stars shone bright in
the midst of the light; and, among these, J' and y of Ursa major. The con-
cave part was terminated by a basis somewhat dark; which separated the red
light of the arch from a white and very bright light that remained within it.
The arch, which was 15° broad, was of a deeper colour towards the horizon
than towards the pole. The western limit, which was interrupted by clouds,
was wider and more irregular than the eastern limit. Fig. 2, pi. 10, exhibits
the phenomenon conformable to the description now given.

At 8*" 34', the red light continued s|)reading, and made, as it were, a basis
of a weaker redness. At this time the aurora appeared unsettled and curious,
as in fig. 2. At its eastern limit, the pyramid continued visible, but of a more
intense colour towards the north, and from its middle there shot up vertically
a streak of light, between a white and a yellow colour. A very dark narrow
cloud crossed the whole phenomenon, and went to terminate in the pyramid.

3 N 2


At the upper part, a considerable tract of the heavens was enlightened with a
very vivid red light, which was interrupted by several streaks or columns of a
bright yellowish light. These streamings shot up vertically, and parallel to each
other, and the narrow cloud seemed to serve them for a basis. Under the
cloud there issued forth two tails of a whitish light, hanging downward on a
basis of a weak red, and it seemed as if they kindled and darted the light down-
ward. There was likewise seen a white streak, which passed across these two
tails, and extended from one end of the phenomenon to the other, in a posi-
tion almost parallel to the abovementioned cloud.

At 9*" 4"", there now remained but a little reddish light at the north pole; all
the rest was collected near the zenith, not extending lower than the star a. of
Ursa major. In the south, where the sky was clear, there were seen some of
those meteors, called falling stars.

Several persons have positively asserted, that, in the evening of the l6th day,
they perceived a certain stench in the air, like that which is sometimes occa-
sioned by a fog. The same has been taken notice of at other times, when such
phaenomena have appeared.

There was a very thin fog in the air not only on the l6th day, but also on
the preceding and ensuing days. The mornings of the J 7th and 18th, before
and a little after sun-rise, the air appeared of an uncommon fiery colour. The
evening of the 17th, the crepusculum was of an extraordinary height. Between
the north and west, there was seen a very thin red vapour, which lasted almost

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