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coantries, under the pretence of esta- tainly have been very little blame in
Wishing the Christian religion, yet violating the truth in such a particular,
the customs which he here describes. The intervention of an eclipse, was a
and which are authenticated by dif- successful omen to Columbus, and it
ferent authors to have *^xisred, are so was surely more dignified than the
barbarous, that civilized natnre must screamitig of a bird they were every
instantly revolt at them. He is sin- day in the habits of hearmg.
ralarly nappy in his descriptive parts. Upon the whole, we do not hesitate
We cannot deprive ourselves of the to pronounce this one of tlie most
pleasure of giving the following :— pleasinjg productions we have seen for
It was the evening ^e, , some tune. It is accompanied with aii
Which, passing o*er the harp of Caradoc, extensive collection of notes illustra-
Swept ait Its chords at once, and blended tive of the Cimbric ditliculties, and
all verv accurate accounts of the maimera

Their music into one conUnuous flow, ana custoQis of the Indians.
Hitt solitary bard, beside his harp

METEORIC $TONES. the ages that have since elapsed, have,

ON a meteoric stone which fell in in like manner, deposited in their aunais
^ neighliourhood of Sigcna, in the epoch, and the ascertiiined circum-
Anwon, old Spain, in the year I77^f stances of several falls of thli kind.
i»yM. the Prorcssor Proust. Even in our own tiniv's, stone , or mi- at present call make it a jjudr neral substances, named Meteoric, have
te of doubt, tnat stones have fallen from been gathered up in the East Indies, in
^ atmosphere, on 4i^<^^ut points of Amenca, in Scotland, in England, in
Our habitable globe. Andaiyity cites this France, in Italy> in Hungary, and at
^ as having ^Mttcntly taken place, and length iji Spaiil ; and that nutlung might

Vol. iv: - . *■ X : r- T

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MeU*or\c Stones,

be wanting to ensure the conviction of and endowed whh similar propcrtiest
tboac who refused their assent to the- could not fail to have one common
combined testimonies of all ages and orifm. But vvliat is this origin J Do
n{ition*, nature seems to have decreed tUcy belong to the earth on which they
very lately the renewing of this astonish- precipitate iheniscTves ? Do they belong
lag phenomenon. On the 6th of to the atin<»sphere kom whence they
Floreal, year 11, or in the month of fall ? Or liave they \y^n launched from
May, 1 803, in the environs of Aigle, the volcanoes of the moon upon our
in Normandy, a shower of these stones globe? These are questions now a^tated

f<?H, and spread over an extent of three
quarters of a league in length by about
lialf a one in breadth.

The National Institute immediately
€leputed a commissary to recognize the
fact on the very spot, and to authenti-
cate the statements of it by confroriting
t^le circumstances witli the deposition
of witnesses, and to transuvit to Paris a
selection of the same stones

amonji^st all tlie naturalists of Europe,
and which the Doctor Izam has collected
in a work entitled, " Aunosphcrical
Lithology," printed at Paris in 1803.
In the cabinet of Madrid there is one
of tiiese stones which has been deposited
there since the year 1/73- His excel*
lency the minister of state, desirous to
throw h^hl on a fact in natural histoiy
so surprising, has been pleased to accord

As immediately after the discovery of it to my demand, in order to he analysed,
anew production in mineralogy, che- The result of this labour I now present
mical analysis is the first labour' that is to the public. We shall leam from
Undertaken upon it, the. president of the the stone of Sigena, that an individual
tioyal Society of London, and certain of this wonderful family has descended
individuals vVho presenred some of these in. Spain, to multiply hy the identity of
stones in their cabinets, made it their its elemcnVs the proofs of a pliciioinc-
business to transmit a part of them to non, the possibility of which^ has licen
Mr. Howard, a member of tlie society, ^n long disputed by the light of reasoa.
that he miglit analyse and aftenvartli As the weight of this stone has lieen
, class them, agreeably to the constituent found very considerablC)notwitlistaDding
principles whicli he might find in them, the degradations and diminutions which

But what was not the astonishment it had experienced before it was trans-
of this chemist, when he had ascer^ained mitted to the cabinet, so that pieces
that these stones which had fallen on niip;lit be still detached from it, without
different points of land, as separate as destroying it, the minister has given
are Benares in India, and Scotland, brders that it shall bo replaced in a part of
Portuf5at, Italv, &c. were nevertheless the cabinet suflv:ientlyconspicuous,thal
comi>oscd of elements perfectly similar, this monument in mmendogy might be
with some triflinp; differences in their ojjcn to the examination of all ~

proportions, and that to this luaexpected who might wish to see it, an(
singularity, they moreover added that
of containing, one ^nd all of them, a
portion of iron allied to niguel ; a species
of combination or alloy, whicli the
habitual constitution of all the parts of
the earth that we are acquainted with,
(deludes any possibilitv' of talcing
place among the minerals that it con^
tains. Tlie identity of these stones has
since confirmed the labours of Howard,

that it

miglu. serve as a mark of comparison
with those which time may produce to
us from America, or even from Spain

We shall copy here the letter of the
captain general of Sarragossa, which
accomjxinied the stone, and wasaddressed
to Don Manuel de Roda, minister oC

In the month of No\"ember last, a

by those of Vouquelin, which have nimour prevailed in this city of an ez'
multiplied the proofs, by retracing txaorcl i nary event which bad taken pkce

through all the same elements, the same
mode of combination, and the same

An accordance so extniordinarv be-
tween these stones and the meteoric
phenomena which accompany their fall,
hath at length induced a conclusion
amongst all the learut^d, that bodies
formed of the sooie colnpoUent parts.

on the l/th of the same month, in the
cultivated grounds of Sena, a viUa^d
depending On tlie district of Sigena- Th«
weather being perfectly calm, about
noon, a noise was heard like the dis*
charge of artillery, which was repeated
three times successively, and whicn w«
followed by the fall of a stotie that,
weighed xiine pounds and 99 <iua€^< ^

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Meteoric Slanes^ 1 ^|

l>atalittle distance from two labourers, might strike one*3 hand with them*
One of them drew near it, i>nt the strong without fear of causing any contusion,
xent which it emitted, cliecked him or pain, or e\'en the least appearance
at first. When recovered' from his sur- of u.'*

jirtse, he went up to it, turned it over We see from this description, that

with his spade, and waited till it was these Aones nnist be of a nature ^rr^

cold enougti for him to remove it to the different iVom those Tve are now ac-

▼iliage, where he delivered it to his quaintcd with, none of which shew so

curate. The information which was surprising a lightness ; and notwith-

obtsdned immediately after on the standing their excessive fragility, which

Spot, and among the mhabitants of the leaves but little hopes that we should

neighbourhood, makes it appear that yet pick uj) any relics, it would never-

neither the noise,nor the fall of the stone, theless be mteresting tSiat som^e person^

were accompanied with a storm or who have a curiosity for this sort of

lightening." objects, and who dwell not far from

To give in one point of view, all that Hoa, would take some pains to itiake

fa now known witn respect to the stones researches oh the spot; perhaps still

that have fallen in Spam, we shall copy some vestiges ofthem might oe recovered,

here the letter of the bachelor Cibdadrcal, The stone of Sigena weighed six

relative to some which fell near the |>ounds, ten ounces, when it was re-

tillage of Roa, in the environs of Bur- mo\'ed from the cabinet. A firagmeiit

gos, in the year 1438. of 3 or 4' ounces, a remnant of those,

"The king Don Juan, and his court, ^'hich the curious had detached fronj

bang out a nunting on the lower side it, accompanied it. It was sprinted

of the village Roa, the sun being hid within ana without, with rusty points,

wider some -white clouds, certain bodies which seemed as if it had been held in'

weresecn to descend from the air, which iVatcr, doubtless to discover whether it

tescmbled stones, of a blackish grey co- would undergo any change therefrom*

loar,and of so considenble a volume that This rust, however void of irtterest it

they excited the greatest surprise. After may at first appear, may, nevertheless

an hour, during which this phenome- ^row some light oti the primitive bed

non lasted, the sun again appeared, and of these stones j it Is commdn, however,

the falconers having mounted their to the whole family of those which now

hwses, rode off immediately to the fix the attention of naturalists.

quarter where the king was, aoout half The stone of Sigena exhibits an irre-

a league distant. They reported that g»far ovoide body, (Vom JT to 8 inches

the field wherein they had been, was rti Icnsth, and from 4 to 5 in width,'

covered in s'^ch a manner with stones and about 4 in its greatest thickness,

cfaD sizes, that the ground could' no It has only, so tt) speak, two sides;.'

longer be distinguished. Tlie king the one fiat, very round on the bordfers,

pornoscd to repair thither, but was dis- and a little dcDressed in its middle; th6*

«Jaded from it, on the consideration that other is a triedre pyramid, obtuse, willi

4 spot which heaven had chosen for the nnenual faces, tno summit and out-'

theatre of its operations, could not be standing edges of which are likewise

afc, and that he had better detach very round. Like all the rest oi its

Aiihersome of his suite. Gomes Bravo, species, it had a bUck and vitrous crust,

the captain of his guard, undertook to which at first gave it the look of having,

execute this mission. He bron^jht been varnished over Avith pitch; but

*way four of these stones to Roa, wlii- the fragility ' of this crust, the shocks

ihcr the king had already retired. They it has undergone, and the hands through

were of a con.sidcrablc si^e ; some were which it has passed, have removc4

round, and as large as a mortar-piece ; the greatest part of It, so that now it

others rescmbledi>ed-pillows, or were like has only some in the qooks of the basis

ihalffenegua, a measure of wheat, in of it, and a little also on the f^ccs of

wcightabout forty-five pounds ; but what the pjrramid.

occasioned the '^eatest astoirfshment. In examining thisplaister, or covering,
Jas their excessive lighmess, as the it is not difficult to jud^ that it must
fargen did not weigh above half a be the effect of afire foreign to the origin
' Jound. They were so tender, that they of the stone ; and we may also perceive,
J«nj«d more like tmtO sea froth con- fVom the little thickness of it, that thia
™D»ed than aijy Other tijiijg. Cne si!mc fire, very energetic doubtless, sinctf

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Meteoric Stones.

it was able to vitrify the surface, has been
notwithstanding veiy momentaneous»
in as muchas the metaliicand sulphurated
parts, which lie iiiunediately under the
crust, had not time to change colour,
nor even to lose any thing of their lustre.

A similar judgment was made of the
stone which the. Abbe Bacheley sent to
the. Frencff Academy, by the learned
who were deputed to examine it. "The
heat," said Lney *' must have been great
enough to melt tlie superficies of it ;
but it was not continued long enough
to penetrate into the interior.

It appears, in fact, that the stones
which »mve been . hitherto discovered,
nresent in general the same singularity.
Nevertheless, if by this word we are to
understand an heat raised to red hot,
we can scarcely conceive how a fire of
this force should have been able to
imprint on the surface of these stones,
an alteration so considerable as that of
the physiognomy of the elements, which •
are found on the crust. It is certain,
however, that when they arrive on the
ground', they are" what is called huruingt
that is to-say, so far heated as to bum
the hands \ but if we are to judge of
the others from that which I have
, before me, I should never suppose that
this heat was intense enough to be
luminous, and to deser^^e to he called

This stone of ours has all the po-
rosity whijcb we expect to find in a
sabulous or sandy aggregate, and devoid .
of every species oT cement; thus a
breath will traverse it with the greatest
fecility, when we hold a piece of it in
dur teetli. ' The steel draws no sparks
from it ; and I am e\'en of opinion that
the pyrites which it contains are not
susceptible of it, for reasons that I shall
mako appear.

The ground work of its colour is
that of all the others, an uniform bluish
grey ; it is that of a black body, en-
lightened by a white body; it is the
shade of an earthy compound tinged by
iron, oxydated to the minimum. . As
to other matters, this stone is an are-
naceous mass, formed of ovoide and
round grains, the biggest of which
scarcely exceed those of hemp seed, and
among which are scattered tne metallic
and sulphurated particles, with all their

f>nmitive lustre, and expecially with that
ight toneof kupfer-niquei thatBoumon
has remarked in some others. In ex-
aiaining the terxtous grains by the

microscope, we likewise discover, that
far from having been&shionedormouU*
ed by the movement of waters, as might
ise tnought at first, they are,, on the
contrary, so many bristled giobules 6f
reflecting or crystalline points, which
will not bear to be at all confounded
with sand.

Those grains which are globular,
have in general a depression upon one
side, which gives tnem some resem- '
bfance to the grain of the ruscus kypo^
phillumy and consequently the air of a
spheroid, composed of crystalline
elenients, or of molecules disposed in
a certain order, although in the broken
places we can perceive nothing to au-
thorise this idea.

Among the different opinions that
have been hazarded as to tne oris;in of
these materials, which w*e are obliged
to entitle atmospherical, the most re-
markable are, that they are either th»
work of the meteor itself, which finding
itself surcharged with gases, sikat,
magnesia, iron, niquel, &c. might hare
engendered thein, as othen engender
rain, by combining their elements by
means of its own heat, and of the at-
tractions which it may cause to ascend ;
and the other that they may have been
launched into our atmosphere, by the
explosion of some volcano in the moon.
But without recapitulating here the
arguments that have been produced to
demonstrate the improbability of these
origins, we need only compare the
interior contexture of these stones, with
their exterior, to abandon every idea that
fire could have ever been the agent of
their formation. If in fact, we advert
to the inductions which may be drawn
from the crystallization of iron and
sulphur 'y from that of the terreous
globules, the brilliancy, the integrity,
the air of freshness tnat the diilerent
parts preserve; if we further consider
that the terreous and metallic elements
which constitute this class of minerals^
have neither in their nature or modes of
combination, any tiling that essenrisdly
distinguishes them firom all the other
compound bodies of our globe, we shall
admit that far from being the result of
a violent imieous operation, which,
equalizes and confounds every thing;^
they must have tbeir ori^nal, on the
contrary, in tranquil mediums, and in.
circumstances doubtless as calm and
as slow as all the other minerals that
coinposrthis globe. ' In efiect, take

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On Uie Globules of the Shod.


tway from them that vitreous coating,
those accidental circumstances, whicli
disfigure and deprive them of their true
aspect y present them to the most ex-
pmeaced lithologists, and they will
jxcsentiy conclude that among all the
lypotfaeses, that of fire, or of volcanoes,
would not even have the advantage of
finding itself the last.

Salvcite objects with reason, that if
these stones had been launched by vol-
eanoes, the metals which they contain
would not ha\'e escaped, being oxidated :
he likewise saw clear, when he judged
that nothing but an electrical dii>charge
was capable of vitrifying them' in the
manner in which they now are. It
must be agreed that the fire which could
distort and unshape their superficies,
&r from acting progressively, and like
that of our furnaces^ must, on the con^
tnjy, have exerted an immense activity
in me shortest space of time possible ;
but this fire which is to join the energy
of the thunderbolt to the rapidity of
lightning, can only be tliat which melts,
Which oxidties iron and plalina, without
karing on the vessel .the smallest trace
of its passage; in fine, it must be that
^bich can melt the blade of a swoixl,
without damaging the scabbard ^ in a
word, we may well compare the stone
of Sigena to a piece of wax that is drawn
back as soon as it is plunged into a
burning furnace; its superficies runs,
whilst aline beyond its interior does
not experience the slightest change of
tempemture. But balverte goes far
bejrond probabihty, when he adds, that
a violent blow of electricity, an extreme
beat, might have determined the for-
mation ot those which are the most vitri-
fied. To this 1 answer, that if the mc-
teorwhich transports one of these stones,
u igneous at its origin, this stone, the
interior of which lb not at all nteltcd,
although of a nature very fusible, cannot
be its work. If, on the contrary, it is
o>ld, till the moment when it begins
to burn, and to produce the explosion
which appears U\ determine the moment
©fits fail, we cannot presume, with
the slightest appearance of^ reason, that
It could any more form it at the second
epoch; that it should be capable of
tti^^ndering a terreous, metallic, and
iulphnreous aggregate, which, well
^on^dered, offers in its separate parts,
no element new to as, no substance
that we do not find in the oilier minerals
pf our globe, i^o! We have no- more

reason to decide that Qne of these mi-'
uerals is foreign to our globe, becauat
our mineralogists have not yet met with
it on the surface of the earth, than we
should have to suppose that those mii-
hons of lupins*, which an hurrican*
lately scattered in tlie environs of Leon,
took their rise in the regions or the
atmosphere, because the species which
produces these grains is not found in iii6


MIC ROSCOPICAL Observationfton
the globules of ttie blood, the fibrine^
the rnusciilar, and aponeurotic fibres.
By M. Viliur, physician, professor of
natural history, and associate member of
the National institute.

Ihe gioDules of the human blood,
which were observed by Leuwenhoeck,
more than a century ago, have beeti
since seen by Lieberkhun, by Baker,
by KaUer, and more especially byi5[>al-
lanzani. Otlier observators, Weiss,
Dellatorre, and several modern philo-
sophers, have aiidfd their labours to
those of their pn.deces6ors. How is it
that modern physiologists have denied
the form, and even the \ cry existence,
of these globules ?

Modem chemistry has deposited Ita
brilliant trophies in the 1 0th volmne of
l^'ourcroy : this learned founder of the
new science has analysed blood and itt
accessories. I shall endeavour to foiifiw
nature throughout her ccmpo: ition ;
the microscoj>ical synthesis will, no
doubt, aflford us some analogies be-
tween the globules, the fioime, and the
other parts of the blood. 1 he globules
are inert, heavy, colorous, and sink to
the bottom of liquids ; the j&brine is
white, IjL'iJtj and poioua, and often
swims at the top. 1 he muscular fibres,
the aponeiiro»es, the cellular tissue,
the membraccs, and the skin, are fonn-
ed, or at ieast nourished, by the blood ;
but it is proved by the experiments of
1 ontana, and Congago, and by the ob-
scr\'ations of Hippocrates, tiiat the blood
contains in it the principle of life. In
its spontnneoiis decomposition, the
blood, in its turn, decomposes all the
air which strikes it, and the watc^

* According to Cavanilles the lubirus
ptloiUi of Linnxus. M.Nee.a Trench botanist .
residing at Mddridt has found it iii rhd
park cf the kingS country house, near the
giite of Madrid.

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• Oh the BMules. ofihe Blood.

\srhich it contams ; the azote, abound-
ing in the atmosphefe, appears to trand-
fonn itself into fibrine, while, at the
same time, tlie oxygene which abounds
in water, oxydates iron, hardens albu-
jnine, gelatins, or ielly, &c. Under all
tliese relations, it became interesting to
8ubmk the matter of blood to fresh ex-

Leuwenhoeck only made use of sim-
fcl^ microscopes in his observations. —
He was not acquainted, as it should
seem, with the means of obser^•ing the
plobules of the blood in living fishes,
m salamanders, ft'ogs, tetards, or bull-
heads, &c. He introduced blood into
glass tubes, and then made his obser-
vations on this vital fluid, in the said
tttb^ J when empty, and when heated,
the rare&ed air of which caused the
blood to enter, in the act and in a state
of condensation. He thought he dis-
covered six' small and lymphatic glo-
bules agglomerated, composing an or-
tfinary globule : this was doubtless an
^ror, lor niaugre the respect produced
by many other accurate and difficult ob:
scr\ations, the observers since Leuwen-
boeck have only been able to see simple,
Spherical globules in man and in hot-
blooded ammals j elliptical, bigger and
lenticular globules in oviparous ani-
inals, serpents, fishes, lizards, frogs,
tetards, &c. as I shall make appear in
this memoir.

It appears that the naturalists have
DOt been patient enough in continuing
tod repeating their observations ; they
have also too much neglected the fa-
miliar use of the microscope ; it is a
delicate instrument, difiicult to manage,
and, above all, to use with facility. —
It is requisite that we should be con-
versant with the rules of optics, with
the phenomena of light, and, above all,
that we be well acquainted with the
mechanism of the eye, and the con-
struction of the instrument that is made
\ise of.

I have made use of the simple mi-
eroficopc of Lyonet, described in the
Acts of Harleim, and in Spallanzani's
work on Circulation, translated into
french, by professor Tourde : this is
vuquestionablv the easiest of all that I
have seen. Spallanzani employed no
other in the experiments of the work
Just cited ; but I have ascertained, from
the first steps tliat have been made in
llii^ p.ursuit, that tli^ simple microscope,
'however good it may be, whatevex na-

bit may have been acquired, in.the ttt
of observing and managing this instni-
ment, will prove insufficient in many
cases. Spallanzani, whose sagacity is
well known, exhibits an instance of it.
—No observator has been more on his
guard against error than he, more in-
ventive in the process, or more fertile in
discoveries ; and yet he speaks of the
circulation of the blood in the germen
or foetus of a pullet in incubation, of
the circulation in salamanders and te-
tards, of the globules of the blood, of
tiieir form and their volume in vessels
and out of vessels, without recognizing
their dilTerence of volume and diameter j
an inconteslible proof that the micro-
scope which he made use of, did not
magnify considerably; for otherwise
he wrould never have said, •* the glot-
bules are the same within and. out of
the ojien vessels, proceeding from the
mesentery of the salamander, &c."

I have, therefore, adapted a com-
pound microscope made by Rbchetle,
of Paris, to the case of Lyonet ; but
being wearied with so many handllngfj
and with the preparations which the
instrument demanded, in order pro-
perly to place the mirror, the object
flass, ana the object to be examined^
made the microscope moveable, like-
wise, the microscope, from right to left
before, and from top to bottom, by
means of pivots and a screw. Another

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